I’ve Been Using An Antenna For 10 Years – Here Are My 5 Pro Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your Antenna For The Best Free OTA TV

I’ve been a cord cutter for over 10 years now, and an antenna has been an important part of that journey. Even before cutting the cord, I grew up with the old rabbit ear antennae for watching TV as a kid.

Now antennas have come a long way and offer so much more. As a kid, we had a handful of chains. Now I can receive nearly 50 channels with my antenna.

Now, the number of channels you can get varies depending on where you live. A site like AntennaWeb will be able to tell you which stations are nearby and give you an idea of ​​what type of antenna is best for you.

Over the past 10 years I have learned a lot about how to get the most out of my antenna. Here are my 5 pro tips for getting the most out of your antenna.

#1 Positioning

Most antennas receive their best signal if placed high up in a room. The higher it is, the better, because the higher it is, the more likely it is to avoid obstacles that cause poor reception.

The only thing better than high placement inside a room is placing your antenna near a window. If nothing is obstructing your antenna from the broadcast tower, place it near a window for the best signal. However, if you place it in the window, there are a few things to consider. Some antennas can be damaged if they get too hot from the sun. Also, make sure your antenna is properly secured to the window, otherwise over time it may bend or warp, affecting reception.

If you’re still not getting good reception, be patient, sometimes you have to find the right spot in the room to get the clearest picture. Just move the antenna to another location inside the room and it should give better results.

#2 Avoid things that can cause signal interference

If moving it to another location doesn’t work, something may be interfering with the signal. Simple household items like a microwave can block your live signals. A good rule of thumb is not to place the antenna behind your TV or near other electronic devices, as these can interfere with the signal and often lead to choppy reception or, at worst, block it out altogether. Hiding your antenna behind your TV can be an inconspicuous place to place it, but it will make it more difficult to pick up some of the weaker stations in your area.

The metal is also infamous as a known signal blocker. The metal covering of chimneys can interfere with your reception, so don’t hang your antenna near them. If possible, keep your antenna as far away from metal objects as possible.

If some TV channels are picking up perfectly, but you are not getting any or are having poor reception, it is highly likely that something is blocking the signal and causing interference with your antenna.

#3 Amplify for a better signal

If these tips don’t solve your problems, buying an amplifier should help. An amplifier can amplify these weaker signals to give you a clearer picture. Those who live near their local stations probably won’t need an amplifier. However, if your local stations are far from you, an amplifier can be the difference between watching a few boring channels and enjoying your most-watched shows. Most of the best indoor antennas come with an amplifier, with some powered by your TV’s USB port.

Also, if you want to connect an antenna to multiple TVs, you can consider using an antenna booster designed for that. Here is an example of Antennas Direct.

#4 Go as high as you can

A rising antenna is always your best option. This helps your antenna get past any obstacles that might block reception like cars, refrigerators, etc. Placing your antenna as high as possible in your room will help.

Yes, I put it here twice, but it’s really important.

You can also place your antenna in a different upper room and use something like a Tablo or HDHomeRun DVR to stream it to your TV. (They also work as great DVRs!)

#5 Make sure you have the right antenna

Not all antennas are made the same, so there is no one-size-fits-all method. Also, if you are not getting the reception you want with an indoor antenna, you may need to upgrade to an outdoor antenna.

If possible, an outdoor antenna, even if placed in your attic, will give you the best reception.

Bonus Tip Get a DVR!

To help you get the most out of your antenna, maybe consider getting a DVR. Something like a Tablo DVR or HDHomeRun to stream your antenna to multiple devices at once. They can also record your favorite shows to help you build a catalog of movies and TV shows for you to enjoy.

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