Step-by-Step DirecTV Satellite Dish Setup & Installation
By Ran Brown
DIRECTV has become a popular alternative to standard cable, and in some areas of the country, it remains one of the few choices for rural television viewers. Given that DIRECTV allows television viewers to watch hundreds of channels no matter where they live, the service is now more popular than ever. It does require the installation of the satellite reception dish. As a potential customer, you don't need to worry as the installation is not very difficult, and will generally only take an hour or two.
Locate an area on your house with an unobstructed southern exposure. Your location for the dish should be a secure and steady platform like the side of your house or the roof.
Mount the mast (the pole that connects to the dish) on the spot you selected using the screws provided in your installation kit. As you position the mast, you need to use your level to ensure that the mast is plumb. Once you achieve a plumb position, tighten the bolts to securely fasten the mast using your drill and Phillips head bit.
Fasten the low noise block armature to the dish with the screwdriver, then lower the dish onto the mast. Do not tighten the dish to the mast at this point, as you will need to do some further positioning before you are ready for the final tightening.
Insert the coaxial cable into the slot at the rear of the low noise block, through the arm, and attach it to the low noise block array (the coaxial connections located on the array).
Tighten the low noise block array to the end of the arm. Make sure that the coaxial cable is pulled snug so that it is not sticking out.
Connect the other end of your coaxial cable to the satellite signal meter. Making adjustments on each axis, position the dish to achieve the strongest signal you can find. The satellites are positioned along the equator, so you should expect the signal to be strongest slightly above the horizon. It may take a bit of work, but once you find any signal at all, you can fine tune with ease. Once the signal is strong, tighten the dish into place.
Attach the grounding block to the house with the included screws at a point closest the the nearest television and connect the coaxial cable.
Feed the grounding wires from the grounding block to either a metallic cold water pipe or a grounding rod to protect the unit from lighting.
Feed the coaxial cable to the grounding block and make the connection. Secure the coaxial cable to the house approximately every 18 inches using cable staples or cable brackets.
Find a location that is closest to your TV and drill a hole with the 3/8 bit into the house. It is helpful to go into the house to determine where you would like your hole. In some cases, it is best to actually drill your hole from inside the house to be certain the entrance hole is located in an aesthetically pleasing location. Once the hole is drilled, simply insert the coaxial cable.
Connect the cable feed to the DIRECTV receiver, and connect the receiver to the television.
Caulk the hole around the coaxial cable. You want to be sure that your caulking will keep the weather out.
Power up your television and your DIRECTV receiver and follow the installation instructions to begin watching your new service.
- Be very careful when reaching or stretching during your installation. A fall from even a few feet could result in serious injury.
Ran Brown has been writing for over 15 years. His work has been published in the "Nashville Tennessean" as well as several industry-specific entertainment and wireless industry publications. Ran holds a bachelor's degree in finance with an English minor, and a Master of Business Administration.