Instructables
Picture of How to install a TV antenna or aerial
222438683_3f18c6987d_b.jpg
Versión en español

Before you buy your antenna and spend your hard earned money you need to consider a few things. You need to find the type of antenna that you need, the location of your antenna, your budget, your skill level and the cost effectiveness of the project. Depending of the location of your home you may not benefit from getting your TV programming from a TV antenna if you don't get enough channels where you live or, if the channels available in your area don't appeal to you. Before you start you may want to search all the stations broadcasting where you live. An excellent source of information is Antennaweb.org. At antennaweb.org  you can search stations in addresses located in United States and overseas territories and, it is a great tool to help you decide what to do next.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Outdoor antenna versus indoor antenna

Picture of Outdoor antenna versus indoor antenna
indoor.jpg
indoor1.jpg
There are pros and cons from both types of antennas. Indoor antennas are:


  • Easy to install, almost right out of the box.
  • Some have great receptivity wherever you place them in your home.


Some disadvantages of indoor antennas are:


  • Some cheaper antennas have limited receptivity.


In contrast outdoor antennas have some benefits like:


  • Choice of unidirectional or omnidirectional.
  • Better and increased receptivity of digital signal.
  • Usually located at the highest point on a structure, thus increasing reception.
  • Choice of shapes and sizes. Some antennas look like arrows, some look like little satellite dishes, some look like grids and, some like flying saucers. The shape of the antenna is a result of its function. Unidirectional antennas look like arrows and some of the newer ones look like small satellite dishes. Omnidirectional antennas may look like grids or small flying saucers.
  • There are many different ways to install an outdoor antenna: gable install, roof, wall or, chimney. There are different installation kits available in almost every hardware store.


The disadvantages of the outdoor antennas are:


  • Unless you hire a professional installer, it requires you to climb ladders, use power drills and, walking on your roof. Caution should be taken to not install your antenna too close to electrical wires or, during wet, stormy or, snowy weather. Always observe the maximum weight capacity on your ladder, do not use unstable ladders and, never overextend your arms trying to reach anything.
  • Installation of an outdoor antenna requires grounding to discharge any electrostatic potential that will attract lightning.
Phil B2 years ago
Since digital broadcasting replaced analog signals, I assume you are using the UHF section of the antenna, even though it also has a VHF section. Did you need to do anything special to guarantee the aim of the antenna toward the broadcast tower?
blkhawk (author)  Phil B2 years ago
I have a VHF/UHF unidirectional antenna. I also installed a rotator that allows me to change the direction of the antenna. The rotator is powered and controlled remotely via another cable to a control box in your room. In my search I also found a direct approach with a crank in the attic. I posted the picture in case someone dares do the same thing.
5934908815_e54d97528e_b.jpg2664519102_163fcbdd12_o.jpg
Phil B blkhawk2 years ago
Thanks for the response. My parents had a Tennarotor (brand name) back in the 1950s and 1960s. I had forgotten about them. I have not had one since. I once saw someone's home brew crank setup. I remember one person being on the roof aligning the antenna while someone else was near a window with the TV in view shouting back and forth when the picture was good.
PatriciaA11 month ago

This is a very useful article. There is a similar article about tv aerials problems in another satellite and aerials installation blog (www.asltd.co.uk) that I would like to share with you. :)

musman81 year ago
It is very useful information about tv installs at home. I love those tips while i am using antenna but i think so as soon as possible will get satellite services
rimar20002 years ago
Thanks for sharing this very useful info.