Technology Electronics

DIY Satellite TV Installation

    Clear View

    • Remember it is extremely important to have a clear view of the southern sky to pick up the satellite signals from DIRECTV and DISH Network. Other satellite services may vary. Use a typical compass to establish this. Make sure there is a place you can locate the satellite dish with an unobstructed view. Look up and over to be certain there is nothing blocking the signal. This could be a building, tree, overhang or other obstruction. A satellite dish can be mounted on a pole, on the side of a building or on a roof. Figure out which would work best in your situation. It must be a secure location.

    Antenna Setup

    • Set the antenna (dish) settings as directed for your specific dish, location and service. Refer to the manual for this information, contact your service provider or use the on-screen menu. Some antennas will require skew and elevations to be set, while others require only the elevation. This can be found on the rear of the satellite dish. Adjust the settings using a wrench. If these settings are off even a little, it can make it almost impossible to find the correct satellite signal.

      The antenna must also be mounted completely level for the above settings to work. The mast (bracket or arm) holding the dish should be checked to make sure it is plumb or vertically level. Use a bubble level to make certain it is. Utilize a pole level when mounting a dish on a pole to ensure the pole you are using is level, too.

    Satellite Wiring

    • Use new RG-6 coaxial cable to install your satellite. Avoid using old house cable or cable found lying around. Run the new cable from the satellite dish through a grounding block and then into your home. Each receiver will need to have a separate cable run. Receivers that are DVR capable will require two cables each to work properly. Remember you cannot split satellite signal, so each receiver must have its own cable. Use a centrally located multiswitch if you have several receivers to install. Avoid using more than 200 feet of cable for the best reception. Connect the receiver to the television.

    Satellite Signal

    • Turn the satellite receiver and TV on. Use the menu to complete the setup. Follow the directions provided for your specific dish setup. You may have to find the satellite signal meter. If the signal is weak or not present, you will have to slowly move the dish from left to right until you see an improved signal. Loosen the bolt on the back of the dish to allow you to move it easily. Tighten the bolt when the signal is more than 70 percent; remember the closer to 100 the better and DISH Network's signal can reach 125. Complete the satellite installation as directed once the signal has been found. Contact the satellite provider to begin service, if needed.

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