How to Hook Up DIRECTV

By Hannah Rice Myers

  • Overview

    While DIRECTV became even more popular with the implementation of the government law requiring everyone to upgrade to digital programming. Although many enjoy the convenience of professional installers doing the work for them, there are some who would rather hook up their DIRECTV systems up themselves. Here's how to do it.
    How to Hook Up DIRECTV
    • Step 1

      Determine the size of your dish. While the DIRECTV dishes are generally small and lightweight, there are some which are larger and heavier. These are perfect for areas of the country which receive heavy rain and snow. Choosing your dish according to your area's overall weather conditions will help ensure the best possible signal at all times.
      Dish and receiver
    • Step 2

      Mount your dish. Before mounting your dish, check the area around your home for any large object that may obstruct the dish from receiving its signal. You will want to aim your dish in the southern direction, so this is the area you will be checking. While most people mount their dishes on their roof, it may be necessary to use another object, such as a nearby tree. You will also need to use a mounting kit, which can be purchased directly from an electronics store like RadioShack, or from a satellite store.
      Mounting kit

    • Step 3

      Aim your dish. When aiming your dish, you want to point it approximately 60 degrees upward. The closer south you are, you can adjust it to 30 degrees. The exact coordinates will vary depending on your exact location.
    • Step 4

      Attach your cable. The best coaxial cable to use is the RG6. It is an indoor/outdoor cable, and it has the dimensions needed to transmit the data from your dish to your receiver. Once you have connected the cable to your dish, you will run it into your home and connect it to "satellite in" on the back of your receiver. If you find there is excess cable, you can roll it up and tie it together with a wire tie to prevent anyone from tripping over it.
      RG6 coaxial cable
    • Step 5

      Test your signal. This can be done one of two ways. First, there will be a set of recommended coordinates on the screen and then an area showing your current coordinates. You can adjust your dish until your coordinates match those suggested. The second option is by watching or listening for signal strength. On the bottom of your screen will be a line showing how strong or weak your signal is. There will also be a beeping that will be slow if the signal is weak and grow faster as it strengthens.
    • Skill: Moderately Challenging
    • Ingredients:
    • Satellite dish
    • Receiver
    • Mounting kit
    • Coaxial cable
    • Tip: If you find that the task if installing your own system is more than you thought it would be, call a DIRECTV distributor in your area and ask for assistance.

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