Putting an antenna up is a great fall project

Who doesn’t want more TV for free? Now that the snow has melted, it’s time to look at all those projects you talked about all winter. Some of them, like cleaning the dead squirrel out of the gutter, aren’t any fun, but some of them might actually make your home entertainment experience better!

Outdoor antennas add value to your life

I’m talking about putting up an outdoor antenna. Outdoor antennas are generally much more powerful than indoor ones and therefore you may be able to get channels you didn’t get before. The easiest way to start is with our free antenna selector service. Click here and fill out the form and you’ll get a free personalized antenna recommendation created by a real person who looked at all your information and selected the best antenna for you and your area.

You’ll want to have an antenna and some way to mount it to a roof, eave or chimney, plus cable to get into your home and some way to ground it (folks, this is mandatory. Don’t forget this part.) Once you have everything just go on up there and do it.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

It doesn’t need to be a terribly complicated process. Most antennas have a wide “beam” meaning you just need to aim them in the general direction of the broadcast towers and they will work. Running the cable to your TV isn’t terribly hard and from there all you need to do is scan for channels. That’s different on every TV but just look for it in “Antenna Setup” or something like that on the TV side. The scanning process takes just a couple of minutes. Once it’s done, you’ll not only have the network channels you expect, but generally a lot of other channels you never knew about.

Adding an antenna to your home system pays for itself. Once you buy and install the antenna, there’s nothing more to add. As I said, you’ll probably get dozens of channels that aren’t available on cable or satellite, and this may help you get control of a cable bill that’s gotten out of control. You could cut the cord completely, rely on Netflix, Hulu or other services, and still have access to your local news and programs for free. It’s a win-win.

Fall is the right time

This is the time to put up that antenna. It will serve you well during the winter. An antenna will work even when cables are cut and internet service is disrupted.  You just need to make sure you can supply power to the TV. This makes it perfect for stormy winter days.  Installing an antenna now makes sense, while the days are still mild and the cold snap hasn’t started.

Of course, please try to use as much care as you can when you’re up on that roof. Don’t do it if it’s storming or even if it looks like it could storm. Wear grippy shoes, and if you have work boots that’s even better. Bring a friend to hold the ladder, too. It’s a really good idea and afterwards you can settle down and watch all that new TV content together.

When you’re ready to buy an antenna, check out the great selection at Solid Signal!

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.