Install an Outdoor Antenna

How to Install an Outdoor Antenna — A Step By Step Guide

Contrary to what most people think, television antennas are still widely popular. Not everyone wants to deal with the hassle of monthly subscription bills for cable or satellite TV. And rationally speaking, it’s better to make a one time investment that doesn’t financially drain you every month.

Now when it comes to installing these television antennas at home, most people tend to ask for professional help directly — they just don’t want to tangle themselves in wires.

While this is a good approach, our aim for this article is to inform you that antenna installation is in fact a pretty easy job. It’s nowhere near as hard as some antenna manuals may suggest. Plus, this approach will also save you money. What's better than that, right?

Now we know that if you try to install your antennas with the help of a small, provided guide, it sort of gets too much. So, for you to be able to actually get the job done, we’re here to walk you through the process.

Without further ado, let’s jump into it!

Why are Outdoor Antennas Better than Indoor Antennas?

There are a couple of reasons why both internal and external antennas enjoy almost equal popularity. But if you ask us, we prefer outdoor television antennas over indoor ones, and we’ll tell you why.

As far as indoor antennas are concerned, they don’t carry the added trouble of long installations with them. They are way easier to install. However, the most common problem associated with indoor antennas is their poor reception. They cause so much trouble when it comes to picking up signals that sometimes people even place them outside anyways! (Which may not be a good idea because indoor antennas may not be durable enough to last in the elements.

This problem is greatly avoided when you switch from indoor to outdoor antennas. Outdoor antennas, because of their position, offer superior signal reception. They come in a number of types, depending on the number of signals they can pick up.

For every different type, the reception differs, but generally speaking, all outdoor antennas offer excellent signals and provide you a good number of channels — covering everything you need to have.

However, outdoor antennas are somewhat hard to install. You might bring home someone for professional installation, but through this article, we’ll walk you through the process of external antenna installation!

Things You Need for a Successful Installation

Remember that where outdoor antenna installations are concerned, there can be a number of places and a number of ways you can install your device. For each particular place and way, there are specific installation kits present on the market.

So, the very first step includes gathering all your necessary tools and accessories.

Some of these things include a number of drills, screws, high quality cables, a transformer, a grounding block, the needed mounting kit, and your assembled antenna, of course!

If you don’t have a pre-assembled antenna, assemble it before you climb the roof. It’s not safe to stay up there for too long.

How to Install an Outdoor Antenna

Outdoor antenna installation is a tricky job, especially if you’re nor familiar with it already. We’re here to help you through your process so that you don’t damage your device or put your life at risk.

For your convenience, we are listing all the steps that you will need to take to successfully install your outdoor television antenna without messing anything up. 

Shop for an Antenna

Mandatory steps first, right? We just want to make sure you make a purchase that you won’t regret later!

Before buying any outdoor antenna, make sure it has all the specifications that you require. It’s you who decides whether you need a directional antenna or an omnidirectional, whether you want UHF alone or both UHF and VHF, whether you want a wide signal range or you’ll be using an extra amplifier, and so on. 

Choose the Correct Position for its Placement

Outdoor antennas can be mounted in a number of places: it can be your roof, your garage, your attic, and even your chimney!

However, the best to place it on your roof as it will give you the highest signal reception. 

Prepare Your Tools

Inspect your antenna beforehand and come up with all the necessary tools that might be required for the job. You don't want to be on top of your house with one missing tool in the middle of your installation!

Assemble Your Antenna

Not all outdoor antennas come pre-assembled. In case yours isn’t assembled, assemble it before you proceed to climb the roof.

Arrange the Mounting Bracket

When buying a mounting bracket, you’ll also receive a manual that tells you how to assemble it. It’s recommended that you assemble it accordingly before getting on top of the roof. It’s easier to install it once it is assembled. 

Position the Antenna Pole

Now when you place the antenna pole, make sure it’s pretty high. For reference, you can take a look at some neighbours' antenna to get an idea of the height you need to put your own television antenna at.

The higher it is, the better reception it will have. 

Run a Test

You have to tune the antenna correctly. Ask someone to tell you how the signals are on the TV while you adjust the antenna on top.

Secure and Ground All Cables

The last step is to secure all the wires and ground the antenna using a grounding block. Proceed gradually, this usually takes up time, as it's the most essential step in terms of safety.

At any given point, do not put yourself at any potential risk. Be well aware of your position with respect to all wires, tools, and heights so that you don’t end up accidentally harming yourself.

As long as you’re protecting yourself and safely executing the steps mentioned above, you will be safe and the outdoor television antenna installation will be successful!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Will I Receive my Packaged Antenna?

There’s no definite answer to this because some antennas come pre-assembled, while the others need to be assembled.

For your ease, try purchasing an antenna that is already assembled, this way you’ll only need to put effort into installing it.

How Safe Is it to Install Antenna Yourself?

This depends on your personal knowledge and expertise. 

If you strictly follow our guide step by step and also follow the safety measures outlined in your manual, you’ll be comparatively safer.

But the truth is, it is still a risky job if you’re not a professional electrician.

When Do I Need Professional Help?

At any given time when you feel confused regarding anything!

We put this guide together so that you wouldn't have to hire anyone to do the job for you, but if it seems too much for you, it’s always safe to call an electrician.

Safety Measures

With outdoor antenna installations come a number of safety concerns. To save you from those, we have listed some of the most essential precautionary measures below:

  • Roofs aren’t the safest place to be. To make sure your installation is safe as much as it’s successful, try doing most of the job before climbing to the roof. This can include assembling the antenna, etc.
  • While climbing roofs, make sure that the ladder you’re using is completely balanced and isn’t fragile or too old. The durability is an utmost priority.
  • Don’t try installing your device on a windy day or in adverse conditions. Pick the calmest day as bad weather can result in a number of life threatening mishaps.
  • Make sure that all your wires are grounded before connecting them to a power source.
  • Buy high quality cables, they pose fewer shock risks.
  • Maintain a good and safe distance from all live wires at all times while working.
  • Don’t install your antenna near any power lines: bad weather can cause them to interact and result in fires, explosions, etc.
  • If you’re confused at any point during installation, be calm and patient, and go to a safer spot to think about your next step.
  • Seek professional help when necessary because the slightest wrong step can put you at risk.

Conclusion

Conclusively, we put this detailed guide together to help you find the right way to install an outdoor television antenna. If you think this information is still confusing to you, we recommend that you ask a professional to install it for you. Because for us, your safety is the utmost priority.

We hope we were of help to you and were able to answer all your concerns the right way!

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