Cellular signal boosters enhance your cell phone connectivity allowing you to conduct and receive quality calls and maximize your data connection. A bulk of the booster system's operation relies on the antennas. Although the amplifier does the actual boosting, cell phone booster antennas play a crucial role in supplying you with strong, qualitative signals, especially the outdoor component.
Outdoor antennas mainly come in two different forms: directional and omnidirectional. No matter the type of outdoor antenna, both capture the necessary radio waves needed to supply you with signal connection from nearby network towers. As an integral part of the signal boosting system, ensuring your outdoor antennas function optimally provides you with the best connection. Grounding your antennas does just that. Here is how to ground your cell phone booster antenna and its importance.
How Grounding Works
Grounding works just as its name suggests. It involves connecting specific parts of an electrical network to the ground, creating an earthing system. It functions as a mechanism that channels excessive electrical surges and untethered electrical power to the earth. Since the earth possesses natural positive charges, it naturally captures electricity honing it into one place instead of bouncing it around to continue fueling its voltage. In the ground, the collected haywire electrical power gets diffused across the earth's surface, minimizing its strength, connectivity, and effects.
Why You Should Ground Your Antennas
Grounding any electrical system and network minimizes future potential issues, safety risks, and malfunctions. Without a proper place to ground, surges of electricity can reach conductors, produce more uncontrollable electrical power surplus, and connect to other surfaces that might not be able to handle a large influx of power supply. Grounding your cell phone booster antenna benefits you and your booster system in numerous ways.
Unruly and sudden incursions of electrical power create a lot of dangerous risks. It causes safety hazards like fires, electrocution, and systematic malfunctions that endanger people's lives. Grounding your signal booster's antennas ensures that excess and overpowered currents get channeled to the ground, steering clear of flammable, conductive, and unsuspecting hosts of electrical power.
All electrical systems and types of technology handle specific voltages of power. Too much or too little energy supply causes the mechanics to fail. Unlike deficient amounts of power, a surplus of energy intake doesn't just cause your tech not to operate; it also causes damage. High energy currents produce excessive heat. When incompatible with a device's energy intake, immense power surges fry your systems. Fried and damaged antennas stop your entire booster system from working. Depending on the upsurge's reach, various components of your booster system may need replacing, costing you a hefty dent in your bank account for replacements.
Optimized Signal Connection
Cell boosters provide lots of benefits during weather emergencies. However, they provide little aid during a lightning storm without proper grounding. Lightning strikes carry extreme electrical voltages that increase your risks of receiving an energy surge and multiple technical difficulties. Grounding your outdoor antennas ensures they persist through storms, continuing to provide you with quality and strong signal connections.
How To Ground Your Booster Antenna
There are two main procedures for grounding your signal booster: adding a lightning surge protector and grounding your antenna's mast. Both protocols supply your booster with a grounding system that properly channels excessive energy input toward the earth's surface.
Use a Lightning Surge Protector
Lightning surge protectors connect to your antenna, booster amplifier, and a grounding rod. As well as consisting of three major components, setting up your surge protector involves three simple steps:
Connect a cable (typically an RG11 coaxial cable) to one end of the surge protector and to the base of your antenna.
On the other end of your surge protector, connect another cable to your booster's amplifier.
Lastly, attach a thin copper wire to the ground connector on the surge protector and run it down to a grounding rod or vessel in your yard.
When lightning strikes, its surcharge of currents will get directed to the copper wire, down to the earth, and away from your booster system.
Ground the Mast of the Antenna
Along with a lightning surge protector, directly connecting your antenna to a grounding rod, various insulators, or another grounded structure connects your equipment to the earth, keeping it safe from excessive energy currents. Aside from using a grounding rod, other means of grounding include:
Electrical service panels
A metal conduit
A metal building structure
And a grounding block
FAQ About Grounding
Like with any electrical work, grounding your signal booster involves a couple of technicalities that stimulate an array of questions. Here are four of the most common questions that come up when it comes to grounding cellular signal boosters.
Do You Need To Hire a Professional?
Grounding your equipment doesn't require expertise. However, due to the antenna's location placement and the importance of grounding your signal booster, sometimes hiring a pro offers a better and safer solution than DIYing the installation. Improper cable attachments cause potentially failed grounding mechanisms. Reaching your outdoor antenna involves climbing up tall heights, putting yourself at risk of falling. And any inadequate installations to your booster system could damage the equipment further.
Does Antenna Type Matter?
When grounding your signal booster, you only need to ground your outdoor antenna due to its high placement and exposure to lightning. Whether your booster uses directional or omnidirectional antennas doesn't change how you ground it or if you can. Grounding systems work with any type of antenna, as long as you use the right cables for the job.
Is It a One and Done Process?
Directly grounding the mast of your antenna involves pretty much a one-and-done process. Although, as a best practice, regular checkups on the cables and rod ensure your grounding system functions properly. The same goes for lightning surge protectors, except some models consist of a fuse cartridge that may need replacing every once in a while.
What's the Best Way To Organize the Various Cables?
Colliding and interfering cables create unsightly visuals and produce another potential fire hazard. Cable organizers, ties, and covers keep the wires in place. Plus, cable coverings not only hide the wires but also shelters them from various external factors, like snacking rodents and weather influences.
Implementing a grounding system for your cellular signal booster ensures your equipment works optimally and withstands the wrath of a lightning storm. On top of protecting your booster, grounding keeps you and your home safe from electrocution and fire risks. With you and your booster out of harm's way, you can enjoy all the benefits of an optimized signal booster system, connecting to qualitative and strong cellular signal networks.