How to Install a DirecTV Dish in an Attic
A DirecTV satellite system will not function if the receiver dish is not facing the low-earth-orbit satellite in space over the Gulf Coast. Installing the DirecTV dish in an attic provides protection from the elements for both the dish and the cables connected to it. The procedure avoids the eyesore of mounting the dish on the roof or side of the house. A few tools are needed as well as some bricks from a hardware or cement supply.
Go to a satellite dish location guide website, for example, the AntennaWeb website (see Resources). Click on the "Satellite Dish" location screen. Enter your Zip code and that DirecTV is your satellite service provider in the appropriate text fields to learn the direction the satellite dish must be pointed to "see" the satellite. Memorize this direction.
Stand the DirecTV satellite dish bracket on the floor of the attic next to a window facing the direction of the satellite that will provide the transmission to the dish. Place bricks on the bottom of the bracket to hold it steady.
Loosen the screws on the collar at the top of the bracket with the Torx screwdriver. Insert the pole at the base of the satellite dish through the collar. Push the pole all the way into the bracket. Tighten the screws.
Loosen the screws on the front collar of the dish with the Torx screwdriver. Insert the end of the lateral transponder arm into the collar. Tighten the screws.
Loosen the screws on the side of the transponder with the Torx screwdriver. Slide the transponder onto the free end of the lateral transponder arm. Tighten the screws.
Drill a hole in the attic floor against the wall where the satellite dish is located with the portable drill. Screw in one end of the coaxial cable into the coax output on the transponder. Snake the coaxial cable through the hole in the attic floor and down to the DirecTV satellite receiver on the lower floor. Screw the end of the coaxial cable into the coax input on the back of the satellite receiver.
Turn on the satellite receiver. Press the "Menu" button. Select "System Setup," then "Point Dish/Satellite." Have your assistant sit in front of the satellite receiver. Go to the DirecTV satellite dish. Call the assistant on the cell phone.
Loosen the two knobs on the side of the bracket. Align the front of the dish toward the satellite by adjusting the height and lateral position while your assistant on the phone tells you whether the signal meter on the receiver is showing an increase or decrease in strength. When the signal is strongest, lock down the knobs to secure the DirecTV satellite dish.
- The DirecTV satellite dish should have an unencumbered view of the sky -- it may not work through a wall or any obstruction that is between it and the satellite.
Marshal M. Rosenthal is a technology maven with more than 15 years of editorial experience. A graduate of Brooks Institute of Photography with a Bachelor of Arts in photographic arts, his editorial work has appeared both domestically as well as internationally in publications such as "Home Theater," "Electronic House," "eGear," "Computer and Video Games" and "Digitrends."