Cut The Cable - DIY TV Antenna Installation

Looking for creative ways to save money in your budget and handy? You’ll want to start by doing a TV antenna installation to cut down on your cable expenses. While many urbanites think that getting a TV antenna is an archaic thing, there are still plenty of cases where you can use one.

TV antenna installation is vital for people living in remote or rural areas to stay in touch with their local news and network TV channels. DIY installation isn’t simple but it’s achievable by most people with a little bit of knowledge of simple AV installation work. Here are five steps for getting one installed.

Find the Right Type

When you’re looking for a digital TV antenna for your location, you need to do some initial research. Ask around to your friends and neighbors to see what they’re using and how they might be able to direct your search. If they’re using antennas that they’re happy with, you should consider using the same type of antenna given your location.

You’ll have a slightly different configuration than your neighbors for a lot of reasons but there are sure to be some similarities. Think about the reception quality that you’re looking for and that type of reception that you can expect. You can’t always expect to have perfect quality when you’re far away from the source of the signal.

There’s going to be a standard band coverage that you can expect based on your location. The polarization of your antenna is going to make a difference based on where you’re located and where you’re getting your signal from. Every location has a set of requirements to help you narrow down your search.




Find the Location For Your Mount

When you’re looking for the right place to put your aerial mount, you need to know the difference it can make. The aerial mount determines the signal reception quality that you can expect based on your location.

While some locations don’t require you to consider where you put it, others do. Some areas have such good reception quality that there’s no reason to consider where you put your antenna. Strong signals abound and you’ll be able to get the reception you’re looking for no matter where you are.

However, some places require you to set it up in an exact location because of nearby mountains, forests, or land masses. Using your digital TV signal strength meter, you can figure out the perfect placement.

Install it Carefully

Every antenna is going to have its own requirements for the best place to install it. The best way to start the process, once you have the right antenna, is to assemble it according to instructions from the manual.

Be aware of the importance of the corner reflectors in relation to how their point. They need to point directly at your TV towers in order to send your signal in the right direction. Be sure that the whole thing is set up for the proper polarization based on your local TV transmitters

Adjust your mounting clamp so that it meets the diameter of the mounting pole and then slip it over the pole. There will be some nuts to tighten in order to secure the pieces together. Adjust it with your fingers to get enough support but so that you can move it fairly easily.

When you’ve got the perfect angle, then pull out a wrench to tighten the bolts on a permanent basis. Avoid overtightening it but make sure it’s tight enough so that you can’t move it around with your hands.

Cut the cable - DIY TV antenna installation - antenna

Setting Up The Cable Lead

Your coax cable should be linked to your TV socket or else put it in a central splitter area. Your cable should be run along the wall or along the corners of your building. You’ll need to get the cable from the outside of your house to the inside of your house.

Think carefully before you drill a hole into your roof or into the side of your building. You need to have some material to plug up that hole so that you don’t end up leaving space for insects or pests to get into your home. A little bit of sealant silicon can go a long way in both securing your cable as it enters the home and keeping out unwanted critters.

If you have raised floors, you can run your cable underneath those tiles and into your house. It’s much easier to get cables in when there’ an area that you can designate for slipping all of those cables in and out of the building.

Connecting Everything Together

Once you’ve got your cable into your home, you should have a few options for connecting the cable to the antenna. One way to do it is with a saddle and the other is with a clamp. In the case of most digital TV antennas, there is a socket ready to accept the lead.

Cover your cable with weather protection before you finalize the installation. This keeps it from shorting out or for any unwanted elements to get into the socket.

Twist your cable into the socket at the base of the antenna and then place a weather boot around the cable. Then secure everything with UV protected cable ties, leaving enough loop at the bottom to add terminals in the future.

If you end up needing antenna repair in the future, leaving extra cable lead ensures that your service professional can access it without any major problems.

TV Antenna Installation is Easier Than You’d Think

While TV antenna installation might seem like it would be challenging, it’s much easier than most people think it would be. Installing a TV antenna takes some patience, a few tools, and an understanding of what the goals are. If you understand how a signal moves, it’s a pretty straightforward project.

While you should be able to handle most simple installations, check out our guide for the DIY repairs to avoid.


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