Ladders and Installing Dish? (4 Viewers)

Mario Lombardi

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Mar 13, 2021
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Toledo Ohio
Dude, we get the poles that Dish uses and sends us from Dish Distribution centers. You must work for a retailer or a small sub

Retailer

But again, it’s matter of dollars.

Remember when Dish was too cheap to include HDMI cables with their receivers?

How many component video cables did you go through back in the day?

Or better yet how many customers got installed with HD equipment but hooked up to SD because no HDMI cable was included with the box.

I remember we used to carry HDMI cables longer than 3 feet.

Turned out to be cheaper only to carry the 3 footers and if the customer wanted a longer one, they could buy their own, as our techs where giving them away most of the time and not charging for it.

Can’t really compare HDMI cables to pole mounts, but it’s the same idea when it comes to cutting un necessary costs


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SandFarmer

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Mar 21, 2009
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They originally installed it on the facia. When I had a new roof put on I took it off so the roofers could install a proper "Cricket" on the up slope side of the chimney. For the reinstall this is where D¡SH put it. First, the one on the right, then a couple of years later the left. I put up the OTA antenna.

When they installed the two H3s and had to do the DPH44 and whatnot, to get to where that stuff is in the chimney they used a 40 foot ladder. The Installation Training Tech that did the work also wanted to reanchor the dishes. I tried to get him to do it from the roof side where the work surface is waist height. But no. It was 55 year old concrete so it took a while and he said it's in there so good, he'd certify it as an "anchor point".

DishesCroppedTower0918.JPG
 
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ancient

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May 12, 2014
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Poles fill up with water when it rains and rust from the inside out.
I've had to replace dozens in my 8 years that snapped from the rust and high winds.
If concrete isn't poured down below the frost line, over time, it will force it's way up. In some places, the Frost line is 5'+. No tech has the ability to dig that deep and the poles are only 6-7' tall.
Poles are the most damaged mounts. People hit them with their lawnmowers, kids hang off of them, or they get bumped into and Dish spends a lot of money to go out and repair/replace them
We don't use concrete anymore, we use expanding foam which costs more than concrete.

Also, the poles we use HAVE a flat spot in them and the 2 trips you mentioned are also wrong. On the first trip, the dish goes on a temp-mount,. The 2nd trip is to allow Dig Safe/Julie to mark the ground and then the pole gets set and the cable buried. Which again, costs more money for a 2nd Truck roll.

The distance from the house has nothing to do with grounding. BUT, Dish only buries 50' for free. After that, it's a dollar a foot in $50.00 increments. so a 51' Cable Trench is $50.00. 101' Trench is $100.00

Also, we don't use Silicone, we use Bishop's tape or Pitch-Patch which bonds with the asphalt and why we can only do roof mounts to asphalt shingles. Try and take a dish off a roof that was properly sealed after a few months and the shingles are coming with it, so no, when it's done right, they don't "make enough of a crack that water is allowed to enter".

Where there is an issue is improper mounting. Not using a roof joist to anchor the dish, not sealed properly and not tightened down although you are right about wind. What happens is the force of the wind, when not secured properly, weakens the wood and the lags will start to pull out and THAT'S where water gets in or the dish starts to "move" weakening it more over time.

And your statement " So why do installers do roof mounts? Because it's not their house and they just don't care, but also because by the time the damage becomes apparent to the homeowner they will most likely be long gone, either retired or in some other line of work." is just ignorant. Unless you work in an industry where people typically "just don't care".
Poles don't fill up with water if the ends are covered. If it's a Ku dish or a Dish/Direct stle dish then a galvanized cap on the end, if it's a C-band dish that typically covers the hole. I've got close to a dozen dishes on metal poles, some of which are way older than 8 years and have never had one snap, including the ones mounted on pipes that were rusty when I got them (I wirebrushed ther surface rust and painted with Rust Destroyer but the inside was still rusty, but still none of those poles have snapped). Perhaps you live near the ocean where the salt in the air corrodes metal? Anyway if Dish doesn't cap the pole ends then that is definitely going to be a problem.

I will grant that there is nothing you can do about human carelessness. I don't have small kids anymore and I don't have the kind of yard that has to be mowed (I live in the country, literally in the woods). But a nice ring of concrete around the bottom of the pole avoids the need to try to get right up next to the pole with the mower. But then I am careful around my dishes, but I have some neighbors that I know would not be so I can see your point there.

I'm aware of the expanding foam option but never used it because it was more expensive. It's also used for setting fence posts but concrete is cheaper around here, only about $2 a bag when on sale. Of course if you are paying for labor then that could make the foam option less expensive, since it's much quicker.

I mentioned the distance only because if you can get closer to the house ground you have to use less wire to reach it, also you don't have to do what some installers do which is run a wire along the outside of the house for a long distance. I don't think dishes are ugly but I definitely think that long lengths of wire running along the siding are. My comments there had nothing to do with what Dish charges for the trench; personally I would always do a self-install anyway or at least pre-dig the trench myself.

Don't assume that the way you do things is the way all installers do things. You sound like you actually care enough to try to make the roof mount secure against the forces of nature, what I question is what happens over time. And then there is always the question of what do you do when it is time to re-shingle the roof, which with asphalt shingles always happens sooner or later (I prefer a metal roof for that reason, but again I don't live neat the ocean). Do you remove the dish, and if you do, will the roofers use the same level of care when putting it back? Will they use the same holes or just make a few more? And then will the dish still be aimed properly or is that going to require another service call (unless the homeowner actually knows how to re-aim their dish)?

Your last paragraph really gets me. Let's assume for a moment that you are the best installer in the country and you do everything 100% right. Do you really mean to tell me that you have never encountered a really boneheaded installation put on a roof by another installer? Nothing that was improperly sealed? Nothing where the lag bolts only went into plywood? Nothing where the cables were routed in such a way that they were pretty much guaranteed to be damaged by ice? Or where the dish itself was positioned right where ice jams would form? No instances of the cables being stapled to the roof, with no attempt to seal around the holes made by the staples? Because I am not a Dish installer and yet I have seen all those things. I have also seen Dishes placed where it should have been obvious that a few years of tree growth was going to interfere with the signal. I don't deny there are true professionals that try to do a good job, but in my opinion there are just as many who see dish installs as a way to make a quick buck, and those guys really don't care because it is not their house (or maybe they are just plain incompetent).

And no, I am not saying that is a problem confined to Dish installers. I've see crappy and ugly cable TV installs. I've seen licensed electricians do things that they knew was against code because they thought it was easier and they hoped that the electrical inspector wouldn't notice, and you should hear them cuss when they have to do it over. I've seen concrete contractors pour concrete pads next to a home in such a way that the rain water runs toward the house. I've seen an asphalt contracter put in a driveway that was nowhere near straight, despite the homeowner standing there an explicitly telling the guy he wanted the driveway to be straight (and also it was not level, so if you park a car in certain spots there is a definite slant to the left). I've even seen contractors just abandon a job midway for reasons known only to themselves. Maybe it has to do with where I live, but around these parts it seems like about half the contractors and professionals just don't give a flying f*** about the quality of their work. And my point is that if it's MY home, I would not be willing to roll the dice and just hope I get a guy like you rather than a guy who just wants to do the job in the easiest possible way and/or in the way that makes him the most money. At least with a pole mount, if they do it wrong it's not going to cause your roof to leak.

(Also if you seriously doubt there are terrible contractors out there, watch a few episodes of any of the TV series that feature Mike Holmes. The days when you can blindly trust a "professional" are long gone, IMHO).
 
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ancient

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You can go to Home Depot and get a piece of fence post (For 1 5/8 mounts) cheap. Or you can spend another $30 to get one of those gator poles that are bent at the bottom and will not rust out for several years.

I asked my boss why we wouldn’t get the better poles, and he said that a majority of the customers would refuse to pay the extra money, and we would end up eating the cost of installing it for free or risk loosing the entire sale.

It was better to use the cheap polls, and if it rusted out in 4-5 years go back out and replace it for free. Chances are the customer wouldn’t be a customer that long, or they would call Dish directly or someone else to replace it.


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Just don't get a WOODEN post. They are very sturdy but wood warps and twists and you will be back re-aiming the dish every 4 to 6 months.

For metal poles you can help avoid rust by leaving the bottom end open into the dirt so water can drain out (assuming the soil has good drainage); don't embed the bottom of the pole in the concrete or stick the pole in the concrete after it has been poured. Instead, make the hole the proper depth, stick the pole in and have someone hold it in place, and the just before you pour the concrete throw about two or three inches of dirt back into the hole so the concrete cannot get to the bottom of the pole (then immediately pour the concrete while your helper continues to hold the pole in place). But the most important thing is to use a pole with a threaded end (such as galvanized electrical conduit) and before installation put a galvanized metal cap (from the plumbing aisle) on what will be the top end of the pole. That will keep most of the water out in the first place.

You are right about the fact that in 4-5 years many if not most Dish customers will probably have left. Anyone that has good streaming connectivity can do better than Dish, Direct, or most cable TV systems. It's only in the rural areas where broadband is non-existent or really crappy where a company like Dish can still be competitive.
 
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charlesrshell

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I think if I did a self-install I would try to dig the hole below the frost line if possible, pack a couple inches of gravel in the bottom of the hole, install a horizontal bolt in the bottom of the pole, use expanding foam like HipKat uses instead of concrete, and cap the pole so it is water tight.
 
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HipKat

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Poles don't fill up with water if the ends are covered. If it's a Ku dish or a Dish/Direct stle dish then a galvanized cap on the end, if it's a C-band dish that typically covers the hole. I've got close to a dozen dishes on metal poles, some of which are way older than 8 years and have never had one snap, including the ones mounted on pipes that were rusty when I got them (I wirebrushed ther surface rust and painted with Rust Destroyer but the inside was still rusty, but still none of those poles have snapped). Perhaps you live near the ocean where the salt in the air corrodes metal? Anyway if Dish doesn't cap the pole ends then that is definitely going to be a problem.

I will grant that there is nothing you can do about human carelessness. I don't have small kids anymore and I don't have the kind of yard that has to be mowed (I live in the country, literally in the woods). But a nice ring of concrete around the bottom of the pole avoids the need to try to get right up next to the pole with the mower. But then I am careful around my dishes, but I have some neighbors that I know would not be so I can see your point there.

I'm aware of the expanding foam option but never used it because it was more expensive. It's also used for setting fence posts but concrete is cheaper around here, only about $2 a bag when on sale. Of course if you are paying for labor then that could make the foam option less expensive, since it's much quicker.

I mentioned the distance only because if you can get closer to the house ground you have to use less wire to reach it, also you don't have to do what some installers do which is run a wire along the outside of the house for a long distance. I don't think dishes are ugly but I definitely think that long lengths of wire running along the siding are. My comments there had nothing to do with what Dish charges for the trench; personally I would always do a self-install anyway or at least pre-dig the trench myself.

Don't assume that the way you do things is the way all installers do things. You sound like you actually care enough to try to make the roof mount secure against the forces of nature, what I question is what happens over time. And then there is always the question of what do you do when it is time to re-shingle the roof, which with asphalt shingles always happens sooner or later (I prefer a metal roof for that reason, but again I don't live neat the ocean). Do you remove the dish, and if you do, will the roofers use the same level of care when putting it back? Will they use the same holes or just make a few more? And then will the dish still be aimed properly or is that going to require another service call (unless the homeowner actually knows how to re-aim their dish)?

Your last paragraph really gets me. Let's assume for a moment that you are the best installer in the country and you do everything 100% right. Do you really mean to tell me that you have never encountered a really boneheaded installation put on a roof by another installer? Nothing that was improperly sealed? Nothing where the lag bolts only went into plywood? Nothing where the cables were routed in such a way that they were pretty much guaranteed to be damaged by ice? Or where the dish itself was positioned right where ice jams would form? No instances of the cables being stapled to the roof, with no attempt to seal around the holes made by the staples? Because I am not a Dish installer and yet I have seen all those things. I have also seen Dishes placed where it should have been obvious that a few years of tree growth was going to interfere with the signal. I don't deny there are true professionals that try to do a good job, but in my opinion there are just as many who see dish installs as a way to make a quick buck, and those guys really don't care because it is not their house (or maybe they are just plain incompetent).

And no, I am not saying that is a problem confined to Dish installers. I've see crappy and ugly cable TV installs. I've seen licensed electricians do things that they knew was against code because they thought it was easier and they hoped that the electrical inspector wouldn't notice, and you should hear them cuss when they have to do it over. I've seen concrete contractors pour concrete pads next to a home in such a way that the rain water runs toward the house. I've seen an asphalt contracter put in a driveway that was nowhere near straight, despite the homeowner standing there an explicitly telling the guy he wanted the driveway to be straight (and also it was not level, so if you park a car in certain spots there is a definite slant to the left). I've even seen contractors just abandon a job midway for reasons known only to themselves. Maybe it has to do with where I live, but around these parts it seems like about half the contractors and professionals just don't give a flying f*** about the quality of their work. And my point is that if it's MY home, I would not be willing to roll the dice and just hope I get a guy like you rather than a guy who just wants to do the job in the easiest possible way and/or in the way that makes him the most money. At least with a pole mount, if they do it wrong it's not going to cause your roof to leak.

(Also if you seriously doubt there are terrible contractors out there, watch a few episodes of any of the TV series that feature Mike Holmes. The days when you can blindly trust a "professional" are long gone, IMHO).
Generally I'm a pretty nice, easy going guy but I get really aggravated when somebody acts like they know my job better than I do. First of all nobody put caps on poles. Maybe some customers do but technicians do not do that because we don't have caps to put on the poles.

Secondly the only way to mount a dish to an old C-band pole is with a Dish adapter and nobody has the cap type that go over the pole. Maybe some retailers but not dish techs and not people who get their equipment from Dish Network, specifically subcontractors and rsps. And those adapters are not authorized. The protocol is to put in a new Pole.

But of course I've seen bad work by other technicians. I've been doing this for 8 years, have worked in multiple markets and the company I work for now has about 200 technicians currently working. We absolutely have some monkeys working here that do garbage work. But you're a unicorn because you are not the typical customer. Typical customers don't do their own installs, they don't dig their own trenches, and to be honest with you I would say 85% of my customers these days are older than I am and I'm going to be 57 this year. They are not doing the things that you are talking about. It just doesn't happen. Most of the insinuations that you have made, referred to retailers or subcontractors in other industries.

For subcontractors and regional service providers, or rsp's, dish holds those companies to close to a dozen different metrics. One of them is a 60-day return to a job for any type of repair. That company gets back charged for the entire job so it's in the company's best interest to make sure that those jobs are not only done correctly what are held to a higher standard and any company worth it salt has managers that go out and do quality control inspections on random jobs, specifically targeting technicians who historically do bad work.

Another one is a threshold for pole mounts and when a company crosses that threshold they get fined by Dish Network so technicians are taught to use pole mounts as an absolute last resort.
 

dishdude

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How would you even cap a pole? The cap would have to be some specially made cap that sat inside the pole otherwise you'd never be able to slide the dish on the pole.
 

NYDutch

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It would still have to go inside because when the dishes on the pole the top of the dish neck slightly covers the top of the pole around the rim
And the 1000.4 mount completely covers the top of the pipe but still lets water in. I've replaced several rusted out pipes over the years with galvanized fence pipe for both 1000.2 and .4 mounts. One job was for a fellow that tried to show his neighbor that his original pipe was still solid while I was replacing the neighbor's pipe. When he tried to shake it, the pipe broke off in his hand at ground level. :)
 

Jimbo

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You can go to Home Depot and get a piece of fence post (For 1 5/8 mounts) cheap. Or you can spend another $30 to get one of those gator poles that are bent at the bottom and will not rust out for several years.

I asked my boss why we wouldn’t get the better poles, and he said that a majority of the customers would refuse to pay the extra money, and we would end up eating the cost of installing it for free or risk loosing the entire sale.

It was better to use the cheap polls, and if it rusted out in 4-5 years go back out and replace it for free. Chances are the customer wouldn’t be a customer that long, or they would call Dish directly or someone else to replace it.


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When's the last time you used a 1 5/8 post ?

Didn't they go to 2" poles about 20 years ago ?
 

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