Ok, well this is kind of an open ended question, since it depends on many different factors. What one person may imagine entails fitting an aerial compared to another may be poles apart. So, in order to answer this questions as best as possible, we need to set some parameters. These are:
1. The person doing the TV aerial installation is able bodied
2. They have at the very least the right equipment
3. They have the correct tools required
4. They have a basic understanding of how to make connections and set systems up.
So, once this is confirmed we can take a look at the 3 main type of aerials installations:
• TV Aerial installed within a loft or attic.
• TV Aerial installed on a gable end or wall outside.
• TV aerial fitted to the top of a chimney stack on the outside of the building.
A major consideration that needs addressing for anyone looking to install an aerial is can it be done safely and without risking life and limb. When it comes to doing any work off a ladder, extreme caution is required. This is particularly so when it comes to working off a ladder on any kind of roof. It is worth noting that the most common accident to happen in the home is a fall.

The Basics

The TV Aerial:

In order for a TV to provide glitch free viewing it needs a strong signal of good quality, with low interference. Interference will adversely affect a signal, and one way to deal with this is by using the right equipment. A good quality aerial with an inbuilt filter will help to pull in a good signal whilst reducing the noise interference.

The Cable:

Along with the aerial, a good quality coaxial cable is required. A decent cable will have a copper core with a good amount of braid made out of either copper or aluminium. It will also have foil shielding within it, all of which helps to reduce the effects of interference. Good coaxial cable also reduces the loss of the digital signals from the aerial head to the television.
Where should you install the aerial?

Aerials installed within a loft: For new builds, most aerials are required to be fitted within the loft space. It is also where the internally fitted coax cable coming from the TV points is gathered usually by the loft hatch. This is by far the safest type of installation, as it only requires a step ladder to get into the loft.

The downside is that many loft installations will require a signal meter in order to know where the aerial gets the best signal. This is impossible to do without the meter and would mean that fitting it correctly is down to good luck rather than good judgement. For properties in a very high signal area, the chances of getting it right increase.

Once fitted in the right location, it is just a case of joining the cable to the exiting internal cables. This is done using either a passive splitter or a distribution amplified. So, this is definitely one that could be done by an amateur, if the circumstances are right.

Aerials fitted to an outside wall, fascia or barge boards: So, this is an installation with a lot of risks, & unless someone absolutely had to I’d advise against it. However, assuming the person doing the work is comfortable working off a ladder, and they know how to place them safely, then this can be done.

Factors to consider are lining up the aerial correctly, splitting signal if required and running cable into the desired rooms of the house. Again, if living within a strong signal area, and by that you can actually see the transmitter, then it is a simple job. If living in an area where the signal isn’t as strong, a signal meter maybe required. Along with a good understanding of how to read the meter & when and at what strength a signal if being split needs amplification.

Aerials fitted to a chimney stack outside: Although the principles of fitting the aerial remain the same, I would strongly advise against this kind of installation. Leave this to the professionals. It just isn’t worth the risk.


All of the installations carry an element of risk, some more than others, so what you want to ask yourself is ‘do I really need to risk my health or even my life just to save a few pounds’? By employing the services of a time served professional aerial engineer that is both insured and provides a warranty with his installation, you could save yourself a lot of time and potential trouble. I know what I’d recommend. Read this next.

Digitec Aerials
19 Wolseley Street
Lancaster, Lancashire, LA1 3PH
01524 489188