The two types of repeaters are passive and active. Passive repeaters have no amplifier and pass information from one antenna to another via cable. Active receivers also use antennas and cables; however, an amplifier boosts the strength of the power output to your devices. Both types of repeaters boost your phones. In cases of extreme signal loss, you will need an active repeater to provide a worthwhile signal.
Building a Passive Cell Phone Repeater
Purchase a piece of coaxial cable long enough to reach from the inside of your structure to the outside. You can find the cables at Radioshack and other electronics stores. Coaxial cabling is not the only type of cable that will work; however, the thicker the cable, the less the power loss and the more effective the repeater.
Attach the cable to two antennas; any type of antenna works for this purpose. One antenna should be on the inside of your structure and the other on the outside.
Check your cell phone's signal strength and make a call. If the call signal is low, move the antenna to a new location until you find a suitable signal.
Building an Active Cell Phone Repeater
Purchase an amplifier that offers amplified output for your specific cell phone. The website wpsantennas.com offers a wide range of solutions. On the left hand side of the webpage, click "cell phone amplifiers" and choose the type of amplifier you need based on your cell phone provider's frequency levels.
Connect one end of the coaxial cable to the outdoor antenna. Attach the other end to the amplifier.
Attach a second piece of coaxial cable to the indoor antenna. Attach the other end to the amplifier.
Check your cell phone's signal strength and make a call. If the call signal is low, move the outdoor antenna to a new location until you find a suitable signal.
Things You'll Need
2 antennas (preferably with coaxial connections)