Can you use a satellite cabling hookup for an antenna instead?

A friend moved into a place that has an unused satellite dish from the previous owner. She gets poor HDTV over the air signal from an antenna inside the house, but where the satellite dish is now has an excellent line of sight to the transmitters.

There are 2 wires that run from the dish on top of the detached garage onto the wall of the main house, where they appear to simply run through some sort of connector on the side of the house, and then a different set of wires disappears into a wall. I can’t tell for sure without a ladder, but I’m guessing these are coax wiring and they run through the walls of the house into the coax jacks in the walls. Is that how satellite wiring works?

If that’s the case, could I simply mount a TV antenna near the satellite dish, unplug the coax cable from the dish itself and into the antenna, and presto, over the air HDTV signal comes out of the wall coax jacks?

I would try hooking it up direct to the dish and see what happens w/ OTA broadcasts.

Yes. When I moved there were already two regular coaxial cables running from the box on the side of the house all the way through thte attic to the bedroom area. The satellite guy just terminated his cables on the same box and used the preexisting ones. And he left me a length of cable for later use. It’s regular coaxial. So you should have no problem using it for an antenna.

use you could disconnect the dish and use the coax cable for the DTV over the air signal.

go to

click on

“Check Your Address for Free TV”

and she can find what stations expected, direction to point the antenna and the quality of antenna needed. the real channel numbers will indicate the type of antenna needed.

if the antenna is high or outdoors it might not have to be big.

Here’s another thread with the same question.

Unhook the distal ends of the coax at the dish, and attach a coat hanger to the bare end of the wire.

Ah, without a subscribed receiver you’re not going to get anything at all with a proprietary (i.e. DirecTV, Dish Network etc.) satellite dish. Although there are small dishes made to receive free OTA satellite channels, but you’d still need to buy a new dish & receiver (the existing coax will work fine for this too)…

If this “satellite cabling” thing ever catches on, the airlines will be pissed! Tethered satellites everywhere!

Back to the OP, it seems to make sense that you’re going to get better reception if cabled to or near a dish - they’re just receivers. For the same reason that metal coat hangers “work” as rabbit ear antennae. In both cases, not optimal, but effective.

Not that he will get the satellite channels, but my understanding is that it is possible in a strong signal area to pick up OTA broadcasts using the dish as a regular antenna.

in a strong signal area you might be able to pick up OTA broadcasts with a paper clip.

if the dish would work because of a very strong signal then so would and indoor rabbit ears and loop/bow tie antenna.

The coax itself will work well for an OTA antenna, but you need to check it end to end for switches, multiplexers and various other things that may be essential for a satellite system, but they’ll block (by design) the OTA signals.

I think you’re thinking of the add-on VHF/UHF antennas that DirecTV offers to get local channels. They’re essentially old-style antennas that you install next to the dish…

Since I did not know of that add on, I thing you are right. but if the coax is available there is no harm trying.