Mind your manners — and your DVR recordings

As with many DVR devices, TiVo allows you to record two programs at the same time while watching a third, previously recorded program. (submitted photo)

It’s late.

The kids have gone to bed.

You settle in on the couch to watch “Parenthood,” only to find it’s been deleted off the DVR.

Or you discover the box is out of space and never recorded the latest episode of “New Girl.”

Or you get that pesky pop-up message that the channel will change in five minutes to someone else’s favorite show.

Talk about a buzzkill.

While DVR has become a lifesaver for time-strapped parents, it doesn’t work without a little household compromise.

Every week, Larissa Newton of Mechanicsburg tries to record “Grimm” on NBC. And often, her husband cancels it so he can record football.

For Lisa Moore, recording two shows at the same time forces her to watch one of them. She wishes that her DVR let her watch a third.

Her husband also doesn’t watch his shows quick enough to help clean out the DVR, so she runs out of space for her stuff. She just goes in and deletes his oldest episodes to make space.

But that doesn’t always have to happen.

Our readers share how they record TV in harmony:

How to avoid DVR battles:

  1. Check for a later airing or repeats of your show.
  2. Does the channel offer the full episode on its website the next day? You can always watch it there.
  3. Check to see if what is scheduled to be recorded is a repeat. Then you can cancel it.
  4. If you have on-demand, you can watch the shows later, but you’ll have to watch the commercials.
  5. Try not to delete someone else’s show without asking.
  6. And if nothing else works, you can get another DVR or watch your shows online.

More tips

  1. You can add an external drive to most DVRs for extra storage space.
  2. While recording two shows at the same time, you can watch things you’ve already saved.
  3. Download your service provider’s smartphone application, which allows you to search listings and set things to record on the go.
  4. You can pause and rewind live TV with a DVR.

— Source: Comcast and DirecTV

DVR usage

  1. In 1960: 7 percent of households received cable
  2. In 1990: 56 percent had cable and 66 percent owned a VCR
  3. In 2006: 89 percent of TV content was viewed live
  4. Today: 98 percent of homes own a TV and most have some kind of device hooked up to it 85 percent of TV content is viewed live
  5. DVR usage accounts for 8 percent of our TV time

— Source: nielson.com

Kate Harmon

Breaking news editor, crime junkie, head of election coverage. Chaos is my middle name. Crazy cat lady, Alabama native.

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