Nothing lasts forever and this is also valid for TV aerials. Of course, you don’t have to worry about purchasing a TV aerial each year. But, because they are placed outside the home and are exposed to all kinds of weather, it is normal for them to get damaged in time. So, what’s the average lifespan of a TV aerial?

Just as it happens in the case of other products, the lifespan of a TV aerial is influenced by the quality of the item. If the aerial is made to last, being manufactured out of high-quality materials, it will last longer than usual. But, if the product is a cheap one, you’ll have the unpleasant surprise to notice it failing in just a few years. In the article that follows you will find everything you need to know about this subject. Maybe it will help you look for more reliable aerials, which don’t need replacement too soon.

What’s the lifespan of aerials installed on the roof of the house?

A rooftop aerial is subjected to a wide range of conditions. It rains and snows on them, wind challenges their position, the scorching sun of the summer heats it up, and branches of nearby trees threaten to hit it. Such an aerial can withstand quite a few challenges over the years. Not to mention that they may end up being struck by lightning. So, how many years will an aerial like this last? If the aerial is of reliable quality and it is installed by a professional, it can last anywhere between one and two decades.

Yes, you can have an aerial installed on the roof of your home for the next 20 years without issues. There are cases in which people used the same rooftop aerial even for 30 years, so they can last for impressive periods.

Unfortunately, an aspect that diminished the lifespan of a rooftop aerial is not being installed by an experienced professional. Many people believe that it is not that hard to set an aerial on a rooftop. But, when this is a DIY project, there are many things that can go wrong. However, in the majority of the cases, the cable and fixings are the ones that get damaged sooner than the aerial itself.

What can one expect from a cheap aerial or antenna?

There are two aspects that can diminish the lifespan of an aerial or antenna. The antenna is cheap and made without regard to the latest standards. Or the aerial or antenna has been installed by someone who is not professional or by yourself, as a DIY project. No matter how handy you may be, there are things you may overlook due to your lack of experience in this sector. Under these circumstances, you cannot expect your aerial to last 10 to 20 years.

For example, if you want to buy an affordable aerial, which is not made to answer to the needs of the professional market, you should seriously consider installing it in a loft, rather than on the roof. Inside a loft, an aerial is more protected and its lifespan may be prolonged. Otherwise, you may notice the aerial get damaged or fall apart in a rather short period.

How soon can a cheap and poorly installed aerial break down? You’ll be stunned to know that it can fall down as soon as within one single month from its installation on the roof. So, next time you consider the price of an aerial or aerial installation high, think twice before doing this part yourself.

​In the worst-case scenario, you may have to spend additional money to get a new aerial. If you want to install the TV aerial on the roof of the house, cutting costs is not a good idea, not even when it comes to parts. The aerial should be able to withstand any kind of weather without an issue and without generating any additional costs any time soon.

Things that can go wrong with the installation of an aerial or antenna

Even if you opt for a good quality aerial or antenna, its installation can lead to a series of problems that may end up damaging the aerial. So, if you were willing to invest in a good quality aerial, get a professional to fix it in place properly pointing to the correct TV transmitter and it will work fine for decades. Regarding installation problems, here are some that can trigger issues in time.

  • The aerial was installed at great heights

Some homeowners may have their houses surrounded by trees, so they will want to make sure that the aerial’s signal is not affected by the trees. However, installing an aerial too high without respecting a set of rules may diminish its lifespan. An aerial mast should be used for aerials that are planned to go higher than usual. Just make sure the aerial mast is large and sturdy enough to withstand the weight of the aerial in any weather conditions.

  • “U” or “V” bolts that are too tight

This is probably one of the most common issues when installing a TV aerial. Out of the desire to make sure that the aerial is well-fixed, many tighten the “U” or “V” bolts way too much. In time, this will damage the mast and weaken it. Using a ratchet spanner, especially for the top bolt, will prevent this from happening.

  • When the aerial is struck by lightning

These are rare cases, but they can happen, especially during a more violent electrical storm. Unfortunately, TV aerials cannot survive the strike of lightning and are, almost always, damaged for good, requiring a replacement. When a high voltage goes through the components of an aerial, it causes severe burns, beyond the possibility of making any kinds of repairs.

  • Outdated technology

If a TV aerial lasts for extended periods, it is very possible for its technology to become dated. This may explain why you can’t enjoy all the available TV services in your area. Of course, do bear in mind that frequencies can change in time, so performing a TV tune once in a while will ensure that you have the right frequencies for the broadcasted TV services.

Installing a TV aerial in the loft will prolong its lifespan

As mentioned earlier, TV aerials installed in lofts have a longer lifespan because they are not exposed to the weather. Also, they cannot be struck by lightning, as they are covered by your house’s roof. It’s true that lightning can ruin the entire electrical system of a house or at least severely damage it, but the chances for this to happen are more reduced.

But, even if the loft looks like a more suitable place for your TV aerial, it is not recommended to do so. If you wonder why there are a number of reasons to choose otherwise. In general, lofts are at a lower height than chimneys, for instance, which means that there could be signal issues. Besides this, the signal will have to work its way through walls and roof tiles to make it to the aerial, which can also trigger issues in the quality of the TV services you want to enjoy. You may even experience no signal whatsoever.

Then you should also bear in mind that installing the aerial in the loft will mean subjecting it to a set of interference, coming from other equipment present inside the house. For example, by simply turning on the hoover than triggering the appearance of pixels on your TV’s image. A TV antenna that is installed outside, on the rooftop, on the highest possible point, will provide a clear signal no matter what kind of activities are going on inside the house.

What if the aerial is installed by a professional? Is there any warranty that accompanies the installation?

Any certified professional or company that provide services of installation for TV aerials must offer a warranty certificate for their work. This way, you can be sure that, at least for a period, you won’t have any issues with the installation of the antenna. But, again, a cheap aerial could create problems sooner than planned, no matter how well the installation has been done. The cheap materials present in the structure of the aerial may break down sooner than the average. This is why the warranty for an aerial installation is 1 to 2 years, depending on certain conditions. Of course, if the installation is done correctly, the aerial will last much more than this.

It is also possible to find companies that offer 3 to 5 years of warranty, but this usually happens for an additional cost. In other words, it would be like paying for an extra insurance policy for your aerial. If it is worth taking these costs depends entirely on you and how much you invested in the TV aerial. But, as a general rule, if you’re hiring an experienced and reliable professional and choose a good quality aerial, the equipment should last for very many years to come.