[SOLVED] Baofeng Radios not Receiving FM

There are many issues around Baofeng Radios and FM (Frequency Modulation) reception. In this post we have documented troubleshooting tips to help solve the problem.


Many people who purchased Baofeng radios over the past couple of years have been asking why they can’t receive FM Radio

Baofeng radios operate in the frequency range of 68 MHz to 520 MHz. Specifically they support bands shown in the table below. Note that transmission and reception are restricted to specific bands.

UV-5R Frequency Range Specifications

ApplicationFrequency Range
Transmission136 MHz – 174 MHz
400 MHz – 520 MHz
Reception68 MHz – 108 MHz
136 MHz – 174 MHz
400 MHz – 520 MHz

Based on the specs Baofeng radios should support FM reception – see the frequency allocation in the chart below.


However many users have reported issues with this feature

Before diving into solutions, we recommend viewing this video for how to configure your radio for FM reception.

If the problem persists, let’s get into solutions to the problem.

Solution 1

Make sure the antenna is on tight (but not too tight as over-torquing can damage the RF connectors).

Try changing the antenna. Baofeng radios have a removable antenna and can be easily replaced with another one.

If this didn’t solve the problem, let’s move on to the next solution.

Solution 2

Try factory resetting the Baofeng. The video below shows the process.

If this didn’t solve the problem, let’s move on to the next troubleshooting tip.

Solution 3

Try moving to a different location. It’s possible that you’re outside the range of an FM tower. This calculator helps estimate how far you can be before the radio will not be able to receive FM.

Solution 4

Note that the radio will not go into FM mode while it is currently receiving other frequencies. If you are tuned to another broadcast it will not switch automatically. As well, if you have squelch set to 0, it will also not switch to FM (since the device is always receiving). Make sure that you are able to tune to FM.

Solution 5

Tune to FM band and turn the volume to max, you hear a faint “ticking” sound at a regular interval, there’s a strong likelihood that your Baofeng is missing the FM radio receiver chip.

There were many chip shortages globally during and after the pandemic. Baofeng radios were affected. Many resellers however are advertising and selling these devices with no warning or notice of the missing feature. The Baofeng Blog confirms this.

As well, now many of these radios are showing up on eBay so buyer beware!

Note that if you hear static, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the radio is missing the chip. Radios can product static even if they have the required electronics for the desired band of frequencies.

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