Sure, because of your car's built-in CD player or mp3 player dock, you can enjoy listening to your favorite music while driving. But sometimes, listening to your car's radio can be more entertaining. The AM and FM stations can definitely give your ears more variety: music, news, ads, traffic updates, and even live coverage of your favorite football games. But for you to enjoy all these, your car's antenna mast should be in good shape. This way, you can be sure that the antenna receives clear signals for your vehicle's radio. Unfortunately, corrosion and wear and tear on the antenna mast are inevitable factors that cause poor reception. Good thing, a premium antenna mast is affordable and easy to purchase here at Carparts. So should you need to replace your stock antenna mast, you are now at the right store.
• Comes in a vertical tubing that supports the antenna
• Ensures better AM/FM signal reception
• Relatively cheap and easy to install
Buying Tips for the Car Antenna Mast
The antenna mast is just one of a few parts that make up the car's antenna assembly, but it is the most prone to breakage. This is especially true if you live in humid, coastal areas, as the increased moisture and salt in the air can lead to corrosion in the metal.
Once the antenna's mast breaks down, you will need to replace it with a new one immediately if you want the radio to continue functioning properly. Thankfully, replacement parts for car antenna are a dime a dozen in stores today. And in this guide, we will share with you some tips in buying a new antenna mast for your car.
Manual vs. automatic
One of the key factors you definitely need to consider when buying a car antenna mast is whether your antenna retracts automatically or done by hand. As its name implies, manual car antennas need to be retracted by hand, but the replacement parts are cheaper and they are easier to install and repair. Automatic car antennas, on the other hand, are found on newer vehicle models and have a built-in motor that extends or retracts the mast and the rest of the antenna shaft with a push of a button. However, these types of antennas have more complex parts which, in turn, leads to increased difficulty in repair and replacement costs.
Branded vs. off brand
Branding is another factor to consider when buying a car antenna mast. Branded car antenna parts are only available from select dealers or manufacturers, and these do not cater to all makes and models. These antennas also tend to be more expensive as well. Off-brand car antennas, on the other hand, tend to be cheaper but vary widely in terms of quality. In addition, many vehicles can accept any antenna of an appropriate type, while others only support antennas of a specific brand.
Some car makes and models require an antenna cable adapter in order to accommodate an aftermarket replacement antenna. If you are planning on getting a custom-made antenna, you will need this adapter as well. The adapter varies in design depending the model of both the car and the antenna, so make sure to do some research.
A Beginner’s Installation Guide for the Antenna Mast
The car antenna is one of the mainstays of the automobile through the years, although nowadays they come with various upgrades including a motor and a more aerodynamic shape. But regardless of whether you have an older model or a new one, car antennas remain vulnerable to breakage. The antenna's mast, in particular, is very prone to damage as it is most exposed part of the assembly and bears most of the weight.
In this guide, we will share with you the steps to replacing a broken car antenna mast.
Difficulty level: Easy
- Adjustable wrench
- Hammer (optional)
Step 1: Take the mast out from the base. This can be quite easy or very complicated depending on whether your car has a basic fixed mast configuration or a retractable antenna assembly. For the fixed mast, simply loosen it from the base with the wrench and it should come off easily. On the other hand if you have a powered antenna, you will need to remove the rear or front fenders (depending on the antenna's configuration) and pulling out the antenna and its motor from the inside.
Step 2: Take out any wires leading to the antenna. This includes the grounding strap, the signal wire, and the electrical wires leading to the motor. Be careful not to cut or damage these wires while disconnecting the antenna and motor.
Step 3: Open up the motor housing. Loosen the screws around the housing and the case should pop open. Next, take the bushing at the top of the guide tube and pull the mast out with pliers. We also recommend taking this opportunity to clean the insides of the motor assembly with the brush and inspecting the nylon rope and gear teeth for signs of wear and damage.
Step 4: Install the new antenna. Compress the mast and run the nylon rope down the tube, then seat the base into the housing. You may need to tap the mast with a hammer so that it sits flush in the case.
Step 5: Fully extend the antenna and wrap the rope into the gear drive and reassemble the cover and housing. Plug all the connections and replace all the panels you have removed beforehand.