Grounding is important. It is also called earthing and it is necessary to ground specific equipment such as TV antennas to protect them from lightning.
As antennas consist of a metallic body, they can conduct and the devices connected to the antenna can produce live voltage if they are faulty. Such a circumstance can put lives at risk.
What is grounding a TV antenna?
Grounding a TV antenna refers to securing the metal part of the antenna to the earth or the ground. Such a connection becomes semi-permanent. An electrically conductive path is built to conduct current without affecting any faulty devices or livelihood.
An important thing to remember is that grounding the TV antenna does not ensure complete safety. However, it drastically reduces the chances of damage to you or your TV set if struck by lightning.
Steps to ground a TV antenna
To ground a TV antenna, you will have to divide the process into two steps. The first step involves grounding the coax, which is tricky. The second step consists of grounding the mast.
Grounding the coax
Grounding the coax is necessary to reduce RF noise emitted by the TV set and shunt the excess static electrical charge.
Follow these steps to ground the antenna coax:
- Install the grounding block or lightning arrester
First things first. You must identify the entrance points of the coaxial cables into your house. The grounding block should be attached to a spot that shelters it from rain.
- Fix the block to the wall
Fix the grounding block to the wall using screws. Usually, screws come with the block.
- Attach the antenna cable to the block
The most important thing about using a coaxial cable is using a cable of the correct length. If your cable exceeds the specified length, shorten it by using handy tools such as cappers. Fix it with a coaxial cable compression connector.
Loop the cable at the entrance point.
- Fix another coaxial cable from the block to the TV set
Connect another coaxial cable that spans the length from the block to your TV set. Before proceeding, make sure that your TV is receiving a signal.
- Attach a ground wire
Fix one end of the block to the copper grounding wire and then clamp it to the house ground wire using split bolts or clamps. Opt for the shortest possible path with very few or no curves. Such a measure will prevent the deviation of surges.
Grounding the wire to the mast
The next step is to ground the wire to the mast. Follow these steps:
- Attaching a wire to the mast
If you choose to attach the grounding wire to the antenna, then use a bolt and ensure that there is direct contact between the grounding wire and the mount. The alternative way to do this is to use a mast clamp. It is simpler to deploy.
- Establishing the connection between the mast and the house ground wire
The next step is to run the mast grounding wire to the house grounding wire and fix it firmly. You can use a clamp or a bolt to do this. Avoid taking longer paths or paths with sharp turns.
The process of grounding should be carried out efficiently with all precautions. The ultimate aim of grounding is to ensure safety. So, you must do it with patience, and most importantly, you must do it correctly.
You can enforce grounding manually if you know what to do and how. Professional help from licensed and trained electricians is available as well. You can always book an electrician from various agencies or hire independent electricians. Some countries govern grounding by laws. Make sure you comply with those laws.