Life Expectancy of UG Antenna Cable

Remilk

SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 14, 2003
68
0
When I installed my dish system in August 1998, I used the standard satellite antenna cable which I obtained from Radio Shack.

I had one of the two cables go bad so I had to replace it. It was buried in a trench between 12" and 15". It was a pain in the butt as I had to 're-trench'. I replaced the second cable since I had to dig to replace the cable and the two cables were the same age.

What is the life expectancy of standard UG satellite antenna cable? At two different RS stores, I was told 5 - 6 years.

BTW: I performed the following tests (in this sequence) to isolate the problem.
1. At the DP34 switch and the ground block removed the cable and cleaned the copper lead, then screwed the cable back on.
2. Switched ports on the DP34. (Actually used the one that I knew was working)
3. Switched cables at the grounding block.
4. Ran a test cable from the DP34 switch using the port from the bad cable to the ground block.

I appreciate all feedback and comments.

Sincerely,
Bob
 

korsjs

Welcome To SatelliteGuys
Supporting Founder
Jan 25, 2004
7,583
0
Land O Lakes, FL
i would say it depends on the conditions of where the cable is. being outside would tend to go bad faster than say it being inside. i have some coax that is more than five years that still works fine, it has never been outside..
 

Lorenzo

SatelliteGuys Family
Aug 17, 2005
84
0
There's lots of variables here. The soil and moisture content as well as care in avoiding rocks during instalation and back fill and also there's different qualities of underground cables. I'm trying to remember but I think normal interior cable has a polyethelene jacket and foam dielectric, low duty underground cable has a pvc or polystyrene jacket and a solid dielectric (less impervious to moisture), the heavy duty ug cable adds a flooding compound between the jacket and the braid which is a gooey anti moisture barrier. If the jacket is breached the flooding compound oozes out and acts as a moisture barrier. Bottom line I think is that if you want a long lasting ug installation you need to put flooded cable in underground rated duct that's sealed at each end. I think these can last for 15 years or more in harsh environments as long as rodents don't pierce the duct and outer jacket. In Oregon I've seen direct buried non flooded cable go bad in under 2 years.
 

Van

SatelliteGuys Master
Jul 8, 2004
9,316
1
Virginia Beach
You want to get direct burial coax cable that is rated for 15+ years. This cable has a thicker and sturdier outer casing and a water resistant film inside much like rubber cement. It can be purchased in single coax, dual coax and dual coax with a grounding messenger, its a bit pricey but worth the cost and peace of mind. You can also purchase either pvc pipe and fish the coax down through the pipe and bury it so that it will increase the life span and protect it better and if it ever goes bad you can use the old line to pull the new line through the conduit without having to brake your back retrenching.
 

dfergie

Proud Staff Member
Staff member
HERE TO HELP YOU!
Van said:
You can also purchase either pvc pipe and fish the coax down through the pipe and bury it so that it will increase the life span and protect it better and if it ever goes bad you can use the old line to pull the new line through the conduit without having to brake your back retrenching.
This is how we ran my BUD coax back in the early 80's in a 2" pvc pipe , when I upgraded to Lnb from Lna I replaced the original coax and control wires with Ribbon cable... it is still usable now almost 20 years after replacement. (I sealed the ends )
 
Top