How are you related to your Y DNA matches at Family Tree DNA? YDNA tests don’t give shared cM clues about how closely you’re related. Take this video tour of your Y DNA match list to start figuring out your relationships to your Y DNA matches.
Y DNA can help you investigate ANY genetic male on your family tree—as long as you test the right person, of course. But you can’t calculate your relationships to your YDNA matches at Family Tree DNA* in the same way you do with your autosomal matches at AncestryDNA, MyHeritage, 23andMe, Family Tree DNA or Living DNA.
Good news, though! Some of the same principles—like genetic distance—DO apply to your Y DNA matching experience. So if you’ve done any work organizing and identifying your autosomal DNA matches, you’re a step ahead.
The following short video tutorial (and the summary below it) will help you start using the information on your Y DNA match list to answer questions about your paternal lineage.
Your Y DNA Match Page: What You Need to Know
Your Y-DNA matches
Your DNA matches can often help you with so many different family history questions. They can help you distinguish between different paternal lines with the same surname. They can help you link different surnames together (such as when the birth father’s name wasn’t attached to his descendants). Sometimes they can help you sort out specific family relationships, too.
A Y DNA profile is essentially a list of numbers and their locations along the Y chromosome. Your Y DNA match list at Family Tree DNA helps you spot others who have similar series of numbers and locations as you. Given enough time, many people will find at least one Y DNA match.
3 top features of your YDNA match list
Your match page contains a lot of information, as shown in the video tutorial above. Here’s a summary of the most important things to do with your Y DNA matches:
- Focus on the genetic distance column. The closer the genetic distance (preferably zero!) the better.
- Use the TiP calculator. It shows you the likelihood that you and this match share an ancestor within 6 generations. (If you and that person have both taken a Family Finder autosomal test at Family Tree DNA, you can also explore that relationship.)
- If you have important matches who have tested at a higher level, consider upgrading your test to 67 or 11 markers (or even to Big Y).
Not sure where to go from here? You can get started by taking a Family Tree YDNA test* (or having a male family member take one). Or check out our Y DNA Quick Guide to learn everything you need to know, and nothing more, about Y DNA testing.