How Do I Set Up & Aim My Dish Network Satellite?

Updated February 21, 2017

Once your Dish Network satellite installation is complete, you need to set up and aim the dish to obtain a strong signal. Weak satellite signals disappear in even a light rainfall, but strong signals remain strong even through thunderstorms with high wind gusts. Acquiring a strong signal takes time to aim a Dish Network satellite to the perfect spot, but you'll find the time well spent once you enjoy a high-quality signal.

Find the coordinates you need to aim your Dish Network satellite. Press "Menu" on your Dish Network remote control, then select "System Setup," "Installation" and "Point Dish." Type in your zip code and the satellite dish receiver will display coordinates needed for your specific location. Find the coordinates for elevation, azimuth and skew on the screen and write them down. Leave this screen up as you will need it to complete set-up.

Adjust the dish elevation by tilting it up and down. Use the numbers located on the pole behind the satellite dish as a guide to the proper number of degrees of elevation. Note the arrow on the back of your satellite dish pointing to the numbers on the pole and indicating at what coordinate the satellite points. Adjust until the arrow points to the elevation coordinate needed.

Turn the satellite dish side to side to adjust the azimuth. Use a compass with numbers as you turn the satellite dish toward the southern sky. Note that when the compass matches the azimuth coordinates you wrote down earlier, the satellite dish is lined up properly.

Rotate the dish to adjust the skew. Use the numbers located around the edge of the satellite dish as a guide to the number of degrees possible for skew adjustment. Turn the dish like a steering wheel until the arrow on the back of the satellite dish points to the skew coordinates you wrote down earlier.

Tighten all the bolts on the back and side of your satellite dish, securing its position.

Check the signal meter graph at the bottom of the screen from which you received your satellite coordinates. Make minor adjustments to signal strength, if necessary, until your satellite signal shows it is as strong as can be.


Note the trees in the area surrounding your Dish Network satellite installation. If a growing tree will block the line of sight between your dish and the orbiting Dish Network satellite, or if new leaves in the spring will hamper the signal, choose a different location for installation. Be sure you have a clear line of sight between the satellite dish and the satellite in space for a strong signal. Choose a location for your satellite installation that is easy to access in case you need to brush snow or debris away. Install your satellite dish away from power lines.

Things You'll Need

  • Dish Network remote control
  • Compass with numbers
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About the Author

Kristan Hart is an award-winning journalist in Springfield, Mo., who provides SEO web copy as a freelance writer/editor. She has a decade of experience and holds a bachelor's degree in mass communications with an emphasis in broadcasting.