AntennaWeb.org Help

  • Welcome to AntennaWeb.org- Introduces AntennaWeb.org and describes its purpose
  • Antenna Type Color Codes- Explains the color-coded labeling standard that identifies each antenna type
  • Using AntennaWeb.org - Explores how to use the AntennaWeb.org site
  • Stations Page - Describes the contents of the Stations page
  • Stations Table - Covers the Stations Table section of the Stations page
  • Map Feature - Reviews the contents of the map section of the Stations page
  • Contact Information - Lists contact information
  • Troubleshooting - Provides instructions that may resolve most commonly reported problems



  • Welcome to AntennaWeb.org

    More over-the-air television channels than ever are now available. Digital broadcasting gives stations the ability to include multiple subchannels in their transmissions. Subchannels may contain programming from other networks, local sports and special interest programs, dedicated news and weather broadcasts, and more.

    To take advantage of this free programming, all you have to do is install an antenna that matches your viewing preferences.

    Choosing an antenna for the best over-the-air reception is not a matter of simply installing the largest antenna you can find. Using an antenna that is too powerful may lead to poor reception due to interference from distant stations. Conversely, with an antenna that is too weak, it may not be capable of receiving all of the local channels available to you.

    AntennaWeb.org has been designed to take the guesswork out of choosing the correct outdoor antenna type for your needs. It will also help you discover all of the over-the-air television stations and their subchannels that are available at your location.

    This site is co-sponsored by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the preeminent trade association promoting growth of the U.S. consumer electronics industry, and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the premier trade association for broadcasters, promoting and protecting the interests of local radio and television broadcasters nationwide.

    To simplify choosing the correct outdoor antenna, the CEA and the NAB have created a color-coded labeling standard for classifying antennas by type. Antennas labeled for a particular type will share common reception capabilities and directional qualities, regardless of manufacturer.

    Once you have used AntennaWeb.org to determine the proper antenna type, visit your retailer to select the desired antenna within that color-coded type according to your personal preferences regarding features, price, manufacturer, etc.

    This site is hosted by TitanTV, the most trusted source for free, online television listings.

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    Antenna Type Color Codes

    When purchasing an antenna, look on its label for the color-coded antenna mark for outdoor antennas. The CEA-certified labeling standard for antenna types is:

    Yellow - Small Multi-directional1 Type
    The smallest, least powerful antennas. Designs may include novel shaped disk and patch antennas as well as those that attach to satellite systems.

    Green - Medium Multi-directional1 Type
    Larger and slightly more powerful. These antennas include novel stick, wing shaped or disk antennas with long elements.

    Light Green - Large Multi-directional1 Type
    Bigger in size, these antennas receive more signal power. Better for greater distances from signal source and areas with low signal strength. Styles include element antennas.

    Red - Small Directional2 Type
    These antennas perform much like large multi-directional on channels 2-6. But on higher channels, these antennas start to have useful ghost reducing effects. Multi-element rooftop antennas.

    Blue - Medium Directional2 Type
    The most common rooftop antenna because of its modest size and ghost reducing characteristics. Multi-element rooftop antennas.

    Violet - Large Directional2 Type
    Used in weak signal areas for maximum possible TV reception. Multi-element rooftop antennas. Can also be used in any color code area. May require an amplifier and roof mounting for blue and violet color codes.

    1 - Multi-directional antennas are capable of receiving signals equally well from all directions.

    2 - Directional antennas receive signals from the direction it is pointed while also deflecting or blocking other signals from the periphery.

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    Using AntennaWeb.org

    The quality of over-the-air TV reception is determined by your location in relation to a broadcaster's transmitter, the intervening terrain, the size and type of antenna being used, its height above ground level and the direction the antenna is pointed.

    To discover the proper antenna type for your viewing preferences, enter your ZIP Code into the field on the Address page. It is used to calculate the signal strength of each station that may be received at the center of the geographic area covered by that ZIP Code. From that location, which channels each antenna type is capable of receiving is then calculated and displayed on the Stations page.

    For many locations, the ZIP Code covers a relatively small area and this level of precision is sufficient for calculating reception and determining antenna types. Where such locations are relatively flat or not heavily forested, signal strengths and antenna recommendations generally will not change significantly over a few square miles.

    If you live in a location where the ZIP Code covers a large geographic area or if the surrounding terrain, forests or other tall structures nearby are likely to affect your television reception, enter just your street address in the optional Street Address field. Do not enter your city or state into this field. The additional street-level information is used by this site to further refine the reception calculations and antenna type recommendations for that specific location.

    AntennaWeb.org returns a conservative prediction of the stations you are able to reliably receive over-the-air at your location. You may be able to receive additional stations that do not appear in this list.

    Antenna Height

    When making signal strength calculations on this site, an antenna mounted outdoors at a height of 30' above ground level is assumed. This height is the standard used by the broadcast industry when estimating television signal strength at a given location.

    If the antenna you plan to install will be higher than 30', select the Yes radio button at the Antenna Height prompt. A height of 60' is then used for the signal strength calculations and resulting antenna type recommendations. In many communities, this height approaches the maximum generally allowed by local zoning regulations for residential areas.

    Installing an Antenna in an Attic

    As described above, this site bases its reception calculations on the antenna being installed outside and at least 30' above ground level.

    If you plan to install the antenna in an attic, a more powerful antenna type will likely be needed than that recommended by this site for an external installation. A more powerful antenna would be better able to overcome the interference the roof's structure would inherently create with the incoming signals.

    Because of the wide range of building and roofing materials available, framing and construction methods used, possible presence of heating and cooling ductwork and equipment, wiring and electrical devices, and other variables that essentially make each attic unique, this site does not perform signal strength calculations or provide antenna type recommendations for attic installations.

    About Indoor Antennas

    Due to numerous factors that can impact television reception at a location (materials used in the structure's exterior and partition walls, an antenna's location within the structure, electrical interference from other devices and so on), no recommendations regarding indoor antennas are made by this site.

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    Stations Page

    After you have entered your ZIP Code/street address information and it has been processed, the results of those calculations are displayed on the Stations page.

    Digital broadcasting allows a station to transmit multiple subchannels within its broadcast stream. The number of stations that may be received at your location and the total number of subchannels available from those stations are displayed in the text block at the top of the page.

    The Stations page features two sections:

    • Stations Table - Lists the stations that may be received at your location and the antenna type needed to receive them
    • Map Feature - Displays your location and its proximity to the surrounding stations

    The contents of these sections are inter-related. Moving the location pointer on the map may also update the contents of the Stations table. The information in each section and their use are discussed in more detail in the sub-topics below.

    Stations Table

    The Stations table displays the stations calculated to be received at your location and the antenna types recommended to receive them. The content of this table is a conservative prediction of stations that may be received.

    The table is organized with the stations requiring the least powerful antenna type to receive them at the top and those needing the progressively more powerful types below. The table contains two columns:

    • Stations - This column displays each station's call sign, channel number, RF channel, primary network affiliation, the station's distance and direction in degrees, according to magnetic North, from your location.

    • Antenna - The column displays the recommended color-coded antenna types.

    Stations Column - To determine the proper antenna type, review the Stations column to choose the channels you wish to view then select the corresponding color-coded type on that row in the Antenna column.

    In addition to broadcasting its primary channel, many stations also currently include one or more subchannels within its broadcast stream. All of a station's subchannels are available for viewing over-the-air with an antenna. To discover whether a station is broadcasting any additional subchannels, hold your mouse over a station's area in the Stations column. Flyover text will appear displaying the number of subchannels that station broadcasts. To learn more about a station and what it airs, click on its call sign to open its Subchannel Information window.

    Subchannel Information Window

    At the top of the Subchannel Information window, the station's RF channel, location, direction and the recommended antenna type to receive it are echoed from the Stations table. The window also displays each subchannel's major and minor channel number, the network affiliations of each as well as a schedule of the program currently on the air and the next two programs that follow it.

    Antenna Column - The colors in the Antenna column also correlate with the lines radiating from the location pointer on the map. Each line corresponds to a station in the list and also reflects its direction from your location and the color of the antenna type needed to receive that station.

    As you move your mouse over each station in the list, the corresponding line on the map will be emphasized to highlight its relationship to your location. Click on a desired color-coded indicator to view more information that antenna's type.

    Back to the top of the Stations Page topic.

    Map Feature

    The Stations page incorporates the Google Map® service from Google®. The map provides visual feedback about your location, the direction of each station from that location and the antenna type needed to receive a particular station.

    A pointer icon identifies your location on the map. For most locations, one or more colored lines will radiate from the pointer. Each line indicates the relative direction to a station and its color corresponds to the antenna type needed to receive that station.

    Fine Tuning Your Location

    To adjust your location and recalculate the antenna recommendations, the pointer may be manually moved to another spot on the map. To change the location,

  • Move the mouse over the pointer
  • Click and hold down the mouse button
  • Drag the pointer to the desired location
  • Release the mouse button to drop the pointer
  • The map will redraw to reflect the location change. Depending on factors such as the zoom level, intervening terrain and the distance the pointer was moved, the map may contain new information regarding the channels received, their relative direction and distance to the new location, and the antenna types now needed to receive them.

    The location pointer on the map may be moved and dropped six times per visit to the Stations page before it will stop recalculating reception and antenna types.

    The map feature also contains controls that allow you to pan around the view, zoom the map in and out and toggle between Map and Satellite views.

    Click the Print Stations Table and Map link to print a copy of the Stations page containing the current contents of the Stations table and the map to take to your antenna retailer.

    Google and Google Maps are registered trademarks of Google Inc.

    Back to the top of the Stations Page topic.

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    Contact Information

    AntennaWeb.org is dedicated to serving consumers by providing information that allows them to make informed decisions about choosing the correct antenna type for receiving free, over-the-air television broadcasts.

    Unfortunately, we cannot respond to every question, suggestion or comment that is submitted. Please be assured that we review your correspondence and will update this site accordingly to add enhancements and/or provide solutions to reported problems.

    Click here to contact us by email.

    If you need help installing an antenna, you may find www.TechHome.com a helpful resource for obtaining a list of professional installers in your area that are members of the Consumer Electronics Association.

    For more information about the Consumer Electronics Association, contact them at:

    Consumer Electronics Association
    1919 S. Eads St.
    Arlington, VA 22202

    For more information about the National Association of Broadcasters, contact them at:

    National Association of Broadcasters
    1771 N St., NW
    Washington, DC 20036

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    Troubleshooting

    As mentioned in the previous topic, this site may be updated periodically without notice. The following topics are the most frequently reported problems visitors to this site have reported and their solutions.

    Address Could Not Be Processed

    If the ZIP Code/address you entered cannot be processed for any reason, a message will be displayed onscreen. Please review the information you entered and try again.

    Should the same ZIP Code/address fail again, enter a nearby ZIP Code. After the map is drawn for that location, you may move the pointer on the map to your desired position. The channels at that location and the antenna types needed to receive them will be recalculated for the new position. The contents of the Stations table will also be updated accordingly.

    "Loading" Message Remains Onscreen

    If an animated Loading message remains onscreen for an extended period, this may be caused by data that is cached by your browser. The paragraphs below provide instructions on how to clear the cache on most popular browsers.

    When you visit a web site, your browser stores much of that site's elements on your computer in a special folder called a cache. The cache is used to reduce the amount of data that must be transferred between a web site's server and your computer on later visits to that page.

    When you return to that page, the browser is able to retrieve many of the page's elements significantly faster from its own cache than by downloading it from the site's server. This cuts down on the amount of data that must be downloaded to your computer on each visit and allows the browser to rebuild the web page on your screen much faster.

    If you have recently used AntennaWeb successfully but are not able to do so now, the problem may be caused by outdated code from a previous visit that is still present on your computer. The old code may be incompatible with some of the code in the latest version of this site.

    Clearing Your Browser's Cache - For most browsers on Windows-based computers, press the Ctrl+F5 key combination while in AntennaWeb to instruct the browser to retrieve the most current data and files from AntennaWeb's server.

    In the Safari browser on a Mac or PC, click the browser's Tools menu then select either the Erase Cache or Reset Safari... option (depending on browser version) and follow the onscreen prompts.

    For other browsers, please refer to its documentation for information on deleting the contents of its cache folder.

    If you continue to experience a problem on this site, please contact us and provide the address/ZIP Code information you have entered, the browser version you are using, the device type (desktop, tablet, smart phone, for example) as well as a brief description of the problem. This information is vital in helping our investigations. If we are able to duplicate the problem, we will identify its cause and release a solution.

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