Summary: How much does a new TV aerial cost, average aerial installation costs and average price for a TV aerial.
It may be that you need to upgrade your aerial to receive digital freeview, or that you wish to install a satellite dish to access freesat on your TV’s. Whatever your requirements, there are several considerations to take into account before attempting this type of project.
|Labour & materials||£60 – £150 (Per installation)||2019||n/a|
Factors to consider
If you are installing an aerial in the loft it can be a fairly simple job to undertake yourself, but if it is a roof aerial a professional is almost certainly required, unless you have specialist equipment and are used to working at height. To decide on the location of the aerial it’s a good idea to talk to your neighbours and to see where they have their aerials and what the quality of their reception is like. If your neighbours are picking up a strong freeview signal from the loft, the chances are you will be able to as well.
If you are planning to install a loft aerial yourself it is a good idea to purchase or borrow a signal meter. This will help you to align the aerial towards the direction of the strongest signal. If you don’t have access to one of these devices you will need a small portable TV which you can take up into the loft (along with your freeview box if possible) to check the quality of the signal.
If you have a compass, you can check on line for the general direction of the best signal in your area. Once you have orientated your aerial in the right direction you will still need to make minor adjustments to get the best picture possible.
To align the aerial switch the TV to the channel with the weakest signal, often Channel 5, then adjust the position of the aerial until a good picture is received. It’s a good idea to move the aerial around in all directions as often a signal hotspot can be found by moving it up or down, or to the left or right just a few feet.
If you are in an area of strong signal you may find it difficult to see any difference in the picture quality. In this situation its worth getting hold of a 12 dB Signal Attenuator which disrupts the picture, allowing you to locate the best spot for the aerial. Remember to disconnect the attenuator once the installation is complete. If you don’t have access to this equipment you can sometimes achieve a similar effect by partially pulling out the TV plug from the aerial.
The aerial should always be positioned away from any metalwork or pipes. Pointing it through a water tank or brick walls will often disrupt the picture, so try to find the location with the least number of obstructions. The aerial should be placed at the highest point possible in the loft and should be located away from any power cables.
The body of the aerial and its elements should not touch any part of the loft and should ideally be mounted using an aerial bracket. In the absence of a bracket, the aerial can be suspended from the rafters using nylon string or garden twine.
Costs to consider
The cost of the actual aerial itself depends on the quality of the aerial you are purchasing. A class 3 aerial which is a basic aerial suitable for use in strong signal areas can cost as little as £10, whereas a wideband high gain class 2 TV aerial can cost over £100.
The mounting bracket can cost as little as £10 and is well worth buying to ensure a secure mounting of the loft aerial. The cable which you will need to run from the aerial to your television set should cost around 40p per metre. If the TV is located a fair distance from the aerial, it’s worth buying good quality cabling to avoid interference and ghosting.
If you decide to instruct an installer to supply and fit your TV aerial you should be able to find a company to complete the job for around £60. This may take some searching as there are some companies around charging as much as £150 + VAT, but a good installer won’t charge this much and will supply all the equipment necessary to do the job well.