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    TV aerials


    Summary: Learn how to fit a TV aerial, install a surface-mounted aerial outlet, wire a coaxial plug and install a flush-mounted aerial outlet.



    The traditional means of receiving a TV or FM radio signal is through a loft or external aerial. Many households receive a signal through a satellite dish or local cable network, but as analogue television is phased out over the next few years, increasing numbers of households will be able to receive a digital signal through a digital aerial. Although no official approval is necessary for erecting aerials, satellite dishes may require planning permission to install.


    Splitters

    If you have an aerial for analogue television, FM radio and from a satellite dish, install a diplexer or triplexer, sometimes called a splitter. This acts as an adaptor to allow a television to receive a signal from separate aerials through a single cable. It can also split the signal from an aerial to supply both a television and hi-fi. The diplexer should be fixed to a joist where the cable enters the house.

     

    Cable routes

    Coaxial cable is used for connecting aerials to TV and radios.  Most aerials come with coaxial cable pre-fitted to the aerial but to extend the cable run, fix connectors to each end of the coaxial cable, following the directions below.

    To run a cable from an external aerial, run the cable down the outside of the house. Drill a hole in the wall or window frame to feed the cable to the required room.

    To run cable from a loft aerial, feed the cable through a hole in the eaves soffit board, along the loft cavity, and through a hole in the ceiling of the required room to reach down the wall.

    To run the cable internally, the cable can be run down from the aerial through service ducts, and under the floor voids or tacked along the top of skirting boards.

    If you have a diplexer, run cables directly from the diplexer to the aerial outlet.

    The section on preparing cable routes offers detailed instructions.

     

    Installing a surface-mounted aerial outlet

    • Prepare the end of the cable by making a 30mm slit on the outer plastic sheath with a sharp knife, fold it back and cut it off.
    • Loosen the copper mesh around the base of the sheath to expose about 20mm (4/5in) of the inner insulation.
    • Remove 15mm (3/5in) of the inner insulation with wire strippers, being careful not to allow the copper mesh to touch the exposed core.
    • Thread the central core underneath the grip in the socket outlet.
    • Wrap the core around the central screw and tighten the screw to secure the core.
    • Tighten the grip to secure the cable.
    • Mark and drill pilot holes in the skirting board and then screw the socket outlet to the skirting board.
    • If you are installing a splitter, fix the splitter to a joist, noggin or skirting board.
    • Wire the coaxial cable into the plugs, following the instructions below.
     

    Wiring a coaxial plug

    • Cut away 50mm (2in) of sheath from the end of the cable.
    • Slide the screw cap onto the cable.
    • Push back the copper mesh around the base of the sheath to expose 20mm (4/5in) of inner insulation.
    • Cut back the insulation with wire strippers to leave 3mm (1/10in) of exposed core.
    • Place the claw gripper over the copper mesh and squeeze it with pliers to tighten. Ensure that the copper mesh does not touch the core.
    • Insert the core into the plug pin cover.
    • Insert the plug pin cover in the plug body.
    • Fasten the plug and cable together by sliding the screw cap down the cable to screw on to the plug.
    • Connect the aerial cable plug directly to the aerial or to the labelled socket on the splitter. If you have installed a splitter, plug the cables running to the sockets into the splitter.
    • Run a cable from the socket to the TV set.

    Push back the copper mesh around the base of the sheath to expose 20mm of inner insulation.


    Installing a flush-mounted aerial outlet

    • Hold the mounting box level against the wall and draw around it.
    • Using a power drill fitted with a masonry bit drill to the depth required to accommodate the mounting box.
    • Drill holes around and inside the outline to make chipping out the housing easier. If the wall is plasterboard, cut out the housing with a padsaw blade.
    • If the wall is masonry, cut out the housing with a club hammer and cold chisel or brick bolster.
    • When the housing is the correct depth clean the hole and vacuum the surrounding area to remove any masonry dust.
    • Press out the plastic tab in the back of the mounting box to make a hole for the cable.
    • Insert an eyelet or grommet into the hole to prevent damage to the cable.
    • Prepare the end of the cable by making a 30mm slit on the outer plastic sheath with a sharp knife, fold it back and cut it off.
    • Loosen the copper mesh around the base of the sheath to expose about 20mm (4/5in) of the inner insulation.
    • Remove 15mm (3/5in) of the inner insulation with wire strippers, being careful not to allow the copper mesh to touch the exposed core.
    • Thread the central core underneath the grip in the socket outlet.
    • Connect the core to the central terminal.
    • Clamp the copper mesh under the grip, squeezing the grip with pliers.

    Clamp the copper mesh under the grip, squeezing the grip with pliers.



    Author: C J Mills Google+



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    Tools Needed
    • Trimming knife
    • Wire cutters/strippers
    • Insulated screwdriver
    • Power drill
    • Masonry OR wood bit
    • Brick bolster OR stone chisel
    • Club hammer
    • Padsaw (For plasterboard)
    • Pliers
     
    Materials Needed
    • A splitter
    • Coaxial cable
    • Socket outlet
    • Screws
    • Mounting box
    • Grommet
     
     
    Discuss Project

    Join an existing conversation or create a new thread related to Electrical in our DIY forum.

     
    Important note:

    The colour-coding system for electric cable changed in 2006, make sure you read Electric cable and flex to view the new information.