We are 7 year pop-up veteran campers, brand new to fifth wheel camping. Our unit has a flat-screen and surround sound, so we are hoping to connect to satelite for better reception, but we don't know the first thing about it.

Is basic satelite reception generally available with the one-time cost of a dish purchase (for basic channels) or does one have to subscribe to a scramber service and monthly rentals?


Senior Member
Re: Satelite

Welcome. Monthly fees are involved. You can check at Direct TV or Dish NETWORK. Those are the only two I know of. you will need the scrambler and dish, I'm pretty sure.
Re: Satelite

Cliff, here's what we do about satelite tv.

We bring the receiver from the back bedroom at home with us.

Then we hook up this special dish and mount. Our MH is wired straight through with the right cable for DirecTV.

Then we point it with a compass and some patience.

Then we sit back and watch what we watch at home.
RE: Satelite

If you decide that you want a satellite, there are a number of options. You can go with a dome style or a parabolic dish style. As you should not have anyone in the FW while moving, there is likely no reason to purchase a dome style dish. A parabolic dish will give you much better performance.

In a parabolic dish, you have a variety of options. You can get a tripod mount, or a roof mount. The advantage to a tripod mount is that if you are parked under a tree, you can move the dish to where you can get a signal. The disadvantage is the time to setup, as well as dealing with the weather during setup. In a roof mount, you can get a manual or automatic dish. The manual is just that, you crank up the dish and calculate where the satellite is and locate the satellite manually. The automatic dishes are the most expensive, but the easiest. Simply park, push a button, and in a few minutes you have TV.

As a side note, you can get multiple LNB's on a parabolic dish so you can lock onto 2 or 3 satellites simultaneously. With that setup, you never have to repoint the dish to get programming on a different satellite.

Each of these setups would require service with DirecTV, Dish Network, or Bell ExpressVU. As another reply stated, if you currently have service with a company, you can use an extra reciever and it would be part of your home service.

Jamie Billingsley
Satellite Internet Solutions.
Re: Satelite

Almost everytime I set my dish up, someone walks over and strikes up a conversation. Some watched me do it and related how 2 or 3 of them got together and couldn't find that 'sweet' spot.

I probably average 10 minutes from start of setup to finish. Most of the time I get it set up while I'm dumping the septic (especially if Sallyberetta does the TV part).
Re: Satelite

Hi Cliff, I'm a true rookie camper, also with a 5th wheel with your set up. We have direct tv at home, and we do what Tex does. My Hubby bought a dish (since we didn't have an extra) but we will use the reciever we have on our back porch. We haven't done the set up thing yet, probably will this weekend. Will let you know how easy it is.

Also, my Aunt and Uncle camp in a diesel pusher (they camp like rock stars ;) ) and they had an extra dish and reciever, and they pay nothing extra on their normal bill. Nothing fishy either, DirectTV told them exactly how to do it.

Good luck!! Have fun in your new 5th wheel!

C Nash

Senior Member
Re: Satelite

I have Dish tv service and they installed the second reciever in the MH. Have just basic service and seldom have to use the compass to set up. Turn the tv up loud and just listen for the beeps and wife watches for fine tuning for best signal.


Senior Member
Re: Satelite

There is also 'free' satellite. It is called 'Free To Air'. There is a lot of stuff zipping around up there unscrambled, and it is not too difficult or expensive to latch onto it. Of course, being free, there is no guarantee that what you want is there, or what you watched last week is still there.
RE: Satelite

Thanks to you all for your invaluable input on the options. I now know the options and can not sound so stupid when I start putting it together.
Happy camping ! !