How to Program a Satellite Receiver

By Billy Kirk

The two integral components involved in satellite installation are the dish and the receiver. Even once the satellite dish is mounted correctly to a flush surface, there is still much to do to have the satellite receiver correctly programmed and the dish pointing in the exact direction necessary for such programming. With some tweaks and patience, however, your satellite receiver will be set up and programmed in a minimal amount of time.

Ensure that the installed satellite dish is pointed to the southern sky correctly. The southern sky is where the satellite that beams your information will be located. It will not be possible to program the satellite receiver if the satellite is not pointed in this direction.

Plug the receiver directly into the power supply (the wall outlet or the surge protector). Make the connection between your television and the receiver. To do so, use the RCA connectors. These connectors are three prongs from a wire, and each prong is either red, white or yellow. Three color-coded locations that correspond to the RCA connectors will be located on either the back and/or side of your television.

Run the coaxial cable to the receiver from the satellite dish. Make sure the coaxial cable goes into the "Satellite In" connection in the back of the receiver. Keep in mind that this must be a direct connection. Splitters cannot be used on this wire as the signal will be diminished as a result.

Make sure your TV is powered on and then proceed to identify the correct video input. This input will correspond to how your receiver is plugged into your TV. In this case, it will be an AV connection, usually either AV1 or AV2, although this will depend on your set. You will see a satellite display from your company when the correct input is selected.

Press the "Menu" button on this satellite setup display and then hit "Setup". This will give you the opportunity to program your satellite receiver.

Adjust the satellite dish so that the Signal Meter Screen (which should have appeared on your television screen by now) gets the strongest signal possible. This entails making slight adjustments every 15 seconds to the elevation and azimuth (up-down and left-right, respectively) of your dish. Once the dish is correctly aligned, the receiver will put check marks on the TV display beside each necessary adjustment that has successfully been made. If there are any Xs on the screen, the satellite receiver has not been programmed because the dish is out of place. Keep making adjustments until the Signal Meter gives the all clear.