Best RV TV Antenna Reviews and Buying Guide 2020
If sticking your eyeballs on the screen makes part of your daily schedule, then you might be deeply worried about going for days without a TV—and possibly missing your favorite programs— when you go RVing miles away from home.
You have nothing to worry about, though. Things keep getting better. And today, you just need to mount the best RV TV antenna on your RV rooftop. And voila! You have access to all your favorite TV channels at the comfort of your camper or RV.
The tricky part about purchasing an RV antenna is that you might get a bad one that keeps hitting you with poor signals. To avoid that, read our guide below to discover the secret to choosing the perfect antenna for your RV and the top models on the market today.
10 Best RV TV Antenna Reviews:
1. KING OA8500 Jack HDTV Directional Over-the-Air Antenna
KING is one of the leading manufacturers in ensuring that you stay connected to the world when discovering new adventures with your RV. They present you with an extended line of RV antennas with advanced technology for better signal reception no matter where you’re camping.
This particular over-the-air HDTV antenna is living proof of their fruitful efforts. The antenna comes upgraded with the latest technology that enhances UHF signal reception while still receiving the VHF broadcast channels.
It comes designed for long-range signal acquisition and broad reception coverage to enable it to swiftly locate the strongest TV signals as well as maximize the number of signals it intercepts. With the built-in signal meter, you can easily pinpoint TV towers as you rotate it, helping you know where to point it for maximum signal reception. Thus this is in the top of our best hdtv antenna list.
As for the construction, this antenna features a brand new sleek and aerodynamic design that helps minimize wind drag while making it 70% smaller than the traditional models. All the necessary installation gear comes included in the box for hassle-free installation on different RV trailers.
2. KING VQ4500 Tailgater Portable/Roof Mountable Satellite TV Antenna
The KING VQ4500 Tailgater comes designed to enable you to enjoy crystal-clear, live DISH HD TV anywhere the fun takes you. Designed with sporting and outdoor enthusiasts in mind, the antenna enables you to enjoy watching the big game, weather, movies, and even news in your campsite or RV.
The Tailgater is a 100% automatic RV TV antenna, meaning it automatically locates all the DISH satellites and delivers to you live HD TV in minutes. The antenna is also incredibly easy to set up and use right out of the box. You can choose to mount in on your RV rooftop permanently or use it as a portable antenna by sitting it on the ground—the choice is yours.
Weighing just 8 pounds, this antenna feels quite lightweight, further making it easy to carry or set up. Not forgetting, a 50 ft. coax cable comes included in the box to make the setup even easier.
However, keep in mind that this is a satellite DISH TV, so you’ll need to pay to watch the channels. It has a pay-as-you-go plan that means you can pay for the months you use it. You have several packages to choose from and you can always stop the service anytime you wish, without any penalties, contracts, commitments, or credit checks.
3. Winegard 8551203.400S White RVW-395 Sensar IV HDTV RV Antenna Reviews
Also appearing on our RV TV antenna reviews is a product from another top US-based brand, the Winegard. Like KING, this brand works hard to ensure you never miss an episode of your favorite programs again, no matter how far you are from civilization.
This particular Winegard Sensar RV TV antenna is an over the air model that comes optimized for all the digital channels in all markets. It excels at UHF and intercepts the hard to get VHF digital channels. You can easily raise, lower, or even rotate it from inside your RV for the best reception.
It boasts of an unprecedented range, enabling you to watch channels being broadcast up to 55 miles away from your destination. It comes with a built-in amplifier that boosts the weaker signals to ensure you enjoy crystal-clear reception—assuring you of home-like screen time experience.
The RV TV antenna has a powder coating that translates to long-lasting durability. It has passed rigorous tests for the ability to hold up to v and other extreme conditions when you mount it on your RV rooftop.
4. KING OA8300 Jack Replacement Head HDTV Over-the-Air Antenna
If still looking for the best RV over the air antenna, here’s another great option from KING, the top brand. This model also comes designed with long-range signal acquisition capabilities to ensure you can enjoy more channels when on the road.
Whether you want to access digital or UHF TV channels, this antenna comes designed to make it easier for you to receive these channels that your previous model. It features an upgraded technology that enables it to receive VHF broadcast while at the same time enhancing the UHF signal reception.
Because this antenna also features broader reception coverage, you can rest assured that it will do a great job at maximizing the reception and the number of channels you can watch inside your RV.
Note that you can use this over the air RV TV antenna indoors or outdoors. It has a compact, lightweight design that makes it pretty easy to install and comes with a universal mounting kit for hassle-free installation. Its sleek, aerodynamic design for better wind resistance.
5. Outdoor Amplified HDTV Antenna
A UFO on your RV rooftop? This outdoor modified HDTV antenna comes with an upgraded design that looks exactly like a UFO (unidentified flying object). It has a compact design that helps reduce wind load for improved signal reception on windy or rainy days.
We rated this antenna as one of the best TV antenna for RV use because of its built-in smartpass amplifier technology that allows you to switch ON/OFF if you want to get long or short-range signals. It can intercept long-range signals—as far as 55 to 65 miles from the point of signal origin.
You don’t have to worry about signal interference when using this antenna. It features a built-in 4G LTE filter that excellently blocks all the 3G and 4G signals from nearby mobile devices and wireless networks. This ensures a noise-free digital TV reception for uninterrupted viewing experience.
Designed with the extreme outdoor RV environment in mind, this antenna also features an anti-UV coating plus waterproof and snow proof design to enable it to hold up to various harsh elements. When you add a tool-free installation plus a compact design, and installation accessories, setting up this antenna becomes the easiest part.
6. Winegard SK-SWM3 TRAV'LER DIRECTV Slimline Antenna
Are you a fan of DIRECTV HD? And are you made of money? If your answer is yes, then this premium pack from Winegard should appear at the top of your list of the best RV antennas options. It boasts of its place as the one and ONLY satellite RV TV antenna compatible with the DIRECTV HD programming.
When it comes to giving you a memorable TV watching experience when far away from home, this antenna never disappoints. It lets you experience the power of multi-satellite viewing firsthand…i.e. it lets you watch all the satellites at the same time, so you never miss any program when RVing!
We love that this antenna automatically tunes itself, saving you all the hassle of manually tuning for channels. Moreover, it’s omnidirectional which means it can view all direction satellites. The antenna can maximize high definition programming from 99, 101, and 103 satellites. And it’s capable of delivering strong, high-quality signals as certified by reflectors.
The installation of this antenna, however, might feel a bit complex. the dish appears large, heavy and is auto-aiming, so you might need to hire a professional installer to assist you to get the job done. Gladly, this is a onetime installation on your rooftop, after which you can enjoy watching TV in your antenna, anytime, at any place!
7. Winegard RZ-6000 Rayzar z1 RV TV Antenna
One more Winegard shows up on our list of the best TV antenna for RV reviews. This Rayzar z1 represents the company’s next-generation digital and HD broadcast TV antennas with the ability to deliver crystal-clear HD quality programming plus 4k UHD (if available) right inside your recreational vehicle, camper, or mobile home.
Rated as one of the top-performance amplified RV TV antennas available, this unit delivers superior UHF and VHF reception, ensuring you keep up with all your favorite channels when on the go. It also presents you with effortless rotation, minus the cracking associated with the traditional TV antennas.
Regarding the design, this antenna features a streamlined design characterized by minimal footprint. Overall, it looks smaller and shorter and comes with a modern design that’s sure to complement just any RV. You can count on this antenna as the ideal replacement for your current unit or head with minimal effort. All the necessary mounting hardware comes with the pack for easy, fast setup.
Oh! Don’t forget that this antenna also has a durable UV and weather-resistant housing to help shield it from harsh outdoor weather elements that might cut short its lifespan.
8. Luxtronic Long-Rang UFO Digital HDTV Antenna
Last, in our top-rated RV TV antenna reviews picks, we have the Luxtronic long-range digital HDTV antenna. Just like the model occupying our 5th spot in this list, this unit also comes with a UFO design, making it a cool choice the UFO enthusiasts. It also comes at a highly attractive cost, making it ideal for budget-minded RVers.
If you want to enjoy 100% FREE HDTV for life, this is your go-to best HD antenna for RV. It provides you with access to completely free over the air broadcast as well as high-quality balanced reception on various analog and digital free-to-air channels within its frequency range (UHF: 470-862MHz).
As you as long as you have HD-capable RV TV, this antenna will enable you to enjoy HD content inside your RV. And yes, it continues offering you the best quality picture and sound even when your RV changes course.
As a mobile antenna, you can use this unit indoors or outdoors. For the latter, it features a weather-resistant and UV-stabilized housing to help protect its integrity in various weather conditions. It’s omnidirectional for effortless 360-degrees reception. And on a clear day, it can intercept long-range signals, as far as 35-40 miles away.
Inside this antenna rests a low-noise amplifier that guarantees you minimal noise interference when in weak signal areas or from strong local signals. Installing it in your RV is super-easy; it features a compact design for easy handling and has a magnetic base for struggle-free mounting.
How To Buy The Most Perfect One?
As we mentioned at the beginning of this guide, the trickiest about RV TV antennas involves choosing the right model for your unique TV watching needs.
There are just too many models out there and picking out the best RV antennas from the poor performers can feel like hell of a task.
In this part, we’ll take you through some important considerations you need to make to help you wisely choose the perfect TV antenna for your RV.
Type of RV antenna
We started with this factor because we believe you must first define what type of antenna you want for your RV.
We can group these antennas into either best HDTV antenna or satellite antennas:
The HDTV antennas enable you to access all the local channels and freely including HD channels and stations like ABC, FOX, etc. They come ready to receive UHF and VHF signals in the comfort of your RV. Some units can pick both UHF and VHF while others can only intercept either of these.
HDTV units are usually more affordable and easier to install than satellite antennas. This explains why they’re the most popular type among RVers.
If you want to receive digital channels, then you should consider getting a satellite RV antenna.
For you to access these channels, however, you’ll need to pay a subscription fee to satellite services such as DISH Network and DIRECTV. If you already pay for any of these services, then this antenna type might be a great choice for you.
The best thing about these antennas is they offer excellent reception, enabling you to receive your favorite channels no matter your destination.
However, they’re usually bulkier and might require professional installation. They’re also costlier than HDTV units.
NOTE: It’s also possible to come across hybrid models that combine the satellite and HDTV antennas into a single unit. Investing in such units enables you to receive ALL types of channels easily in your RV.
We can further group these antennas into outdoor and indoor antennas, depending on where they’re meant to be setup.
Once you have decided which type of antenna to go with, next you should focus on its signal reception—this is the key to the performance of every antenna.
The perfect antenna for your RV TV should be able to intercept high-quality signals. It should also be able to intercept as many high-quality signals as possible.
Look for an antenna that offers a good signal reception range and gain if you plan to go camping in areas far away from the transmission towers. The best units usually feature a range of up to 55 miles.
The last thing you want to experience is static, blurry channels or programs that keep appearing and disappearing on the screen due to poor choice of antenna.
Nearly all the RV antennas are meant for mounting on the rooftop of your RV, where they get exposed to all kinds of harsh weather conditions.
When looking for an outdoor antenna, you should ensure that you get something made using durable materials that can withstand extreme weather conditions.
As you might have noted above, some models even come with powder coating for maximum shielding against UV. Other features a weather-resistant design to help keep off weather and moisture that might interfere with their performance.
Models made using aluminum usually hold up the best in the outdoor conditions.
For an antenna meant for indoor use, however, you might consider getting one made from the plastic material. But make sure the plastic feels sturdy and durable, not one that snaps easily.
Ease of installation
No matter what you do, don’t go for an antenna that’s quite challenging to install in your RV. You want to spend more time watching your favorite programs, not mounting the antenna on the rooftop.
With this in mind, ensure you go for a unit that comes with all the necessary installation hardware, including mounting equipment, cables, etc., to facilitate hassle-free setup.
Different models come with different mounting styles, so paying attention to this info to help you find an easy and quick to install RV TV antenna.
Size and weight
Another important consideration that RV TV antenna buyers often overlook is the size and weight of these units.
Let’s discuss why these factors are important.
Overall, the perfect antenna should be lightweight and not too bulky or big. It shouldn’t take too much of space in your rooftop and shouldn’t feel too light that it gets easily swayed by mother nature.
The RV TV antennas often come at varying prices. It’s important than you know your purchasing when you go shopping for an RV antenna.
That said, most of the popular models on the market today fall in the $50-150 price range. Here, you’ll find multiple options with varying designs, mounting abilities and added features, enabling you to get a suitable model for your RV.
If you want to invest in a satellite-capable antenna, however, you’ll need to spend more money—anything from $300 to $1500 or more. These units also require a subscription fee for you to access, so you should be aware of this extra cost.
RV antenna not picking up channels?
If you’re experiencing this issue with your RV TV antenna, know that you’re not alone. This is a common issue that affects every RVer at some point.
Thankfully, you can fix the issue and continue enjoying your favorite TV show in your RV.
Let’s discuss the possible fixes for RV antenna not receiving channels:
How High Should a TV antenna Be?
Part of correctly setting up your TV antenna on RV rooftop to receive channels including raising it. Most models usually come with a crank mechanism that enables you to easily lower or raise them to your desired height.
Setting the right antenna height
To determine how high your RV antenna should be, you should look around you. Are there any obstructions such as buildings, trees, etc.?
If yes, then you should make sure you crank up the antenna to the highest possible setting to enable it to rise above these obstructions for better signal reception, for more clear and stable pictures.
If no obstructions present, then you can set your antenna to a height that’s good enough to receive your favorite TV channels. You can raise up your antenna as you scan your TV until you find a perfect height where signal strength is good.
Crank and Rotate
The reason why you’re looking for a suitable height is to improve your signal reception. With this in mind, it wouldn’t make sense to just raise your antenna and not change its direction.
An antenna that can be cranked up can also be rotated. Most of these antennas have 360 degrees capability, making it easy for you to rotate them in all directions until you can pinpoint a direction that offers maximum signal strength.
Models with built-in signal meter make it even easier for you to know the right direction to your TV antenna.
When adjusting the height, avoid forcing the crank system as this can easily damage the gear responsible for the raising and lowering of your antenna.
And when you want to move your vehicle, remember to lower the antenna to prevent it from getting caught up by tree branches and other lower hanging obstacles that might end up running it.
If raising and rotating your TV antenna doesn’t seem to improve reception, then you should move your RV to higher ground with less or no obstructions to see if it helps fix the issue.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Will my old RV antenna work with digital TV?
A: Yes. Though the RV TV manufacturers tend to mislead you with some marketing gimmicks that analog antenna can’t work with digital TV, the truth is there’s no difference between these two antennas.
As such, you can count on your old RV antenna to intercept HDTV channels as well.
However, you should keep in mind that the digital signals are less forgiving than the analog ones. For the former, you need to correctly adjust your RV antenna for you to properly receive quality digital channels.
If you have trouble receiving digital channels with a crank up TV antenna, then you’ll be pleased to note that manufacturers are offering replacement heads for the old antennas to help optimize digital channel reception. You can look up for the best antenna for RV that’s compatible with your existing unit to help you receive HDTV when far away from home.
Q: Can 2 TV antennas be connected together?
A: It’s entirely possible for you to connect 2 TV antennas together if you want to improve the signal reception in your RV. This is especially helpful if you’re experiencing poor signal reception in your RV. The two units will intercept signals from different directions and put them into a single feedline, improving your RV signal strength.
See more details about connecting 2 RV antennas in the video below.
Q: How do I lubricate my RV antenna?
A: For your crank up TV antenna to continue working well, it needs some basic, do-it-yourself maintenance. One way to take good care of it involves lubricating its maintenance mechanism for smoothly raising and lowering.
Keep in mind that you should only use silicone spray for this job. Otherwise, using the solvent-based lubricants such as the WD-40 can end up damaging your antenna’s craning system. They can also damage your RV rubber roof seals and cause leaks during the rainy season.
Check this video on how to correctly lubricate your crank up RV TV antenna:
Q: How does it work?
A: An outdoor RV TV antenna works just the same way as your home outdoor antenna. When you mount it on your rooftop, its work is to receive the TV signal as broadcast by TV networks and then send it down the cable to your TV where it’s output on the screen as picture and audio.
If you study your RV antenna closely, you’ll discover it comes with a tall piece of metal at the center, known as the boom. The boom usually comprises a network of metal rods horizontal cutting across it. Each of these rods receives a TV signal sent from a transmission tower situated miles away.
Now, the boom the receptors (one for every 2 metal rods) that grab the signal once it reaches boom base and then sends it down to your RV TV via the cable.
The antenna is usually designed to pick UHF or VHF signals. Most outdoor RV antennas are made of metal, meaning they can as well intercept analog channels.
Watching TV is part of our lives, no doubt, and investing in the best RV TV antenna enables you to hassle-freely receive all your favorite TV programs whenever the fun takes you. The TV antenna you choose, however, draws the line between a good and awful watching experience.
Before you go shopping for an RV TV antenna for the first time, you should read our buying guide above to learn the ropes of the game, key considerations to make, and the pitfalls to avoid.
Don’t miss an episode of your favorite TV program again when out there reconnecting with nature and discovering new adventures! Check our RV antenna reviews list for some of the best models on the product today, with excellent signal reception, easy installation and long-term durability.