DON’T DO THIS: Throw boiling water on the dish

So the other day…

this guy says to me that he goes through a DIRECTV dish every year. They usually fail for him in the winter, and he asked me if DIRECTV dishes were bad in the snow, and how DIRECTV could possibly offer their services in the northern climates when they’re so unreliable.

It took a while talking to him but I figured out the problem. Whenever it snowed, he would climb up on a ladder with a big lobster pot of boiling water. Then he would pitch it at his dish. This would melt the snow just fine.

So… don’t do that.

First of all don’t go up on a ladder with a pot full of boiling water. You know it’s not going to end well for something. I mean, how many times can you climb a ladder with a boiling hot pot of water and expect not to get scalded? This is just dumb.

More importantly, while DIRECTV equipment is waterproof, it’s not designed to have large quantities of boiling water thrown at it. The dish and its electronics will expand rapidly, and as water gets into weird places, it’s going to freeze. As this fellow found out, it’s not going to end well for the dish eventually.

If you do want to avoid problems with snow on the dish, the right choice is a dish heater. This is a heating element that melts the snow off the dish when needed. It’s a lot safer than a pot of boiling water. I’d personally wait until the spring to go up there and apply it, but if you’re feeling ambitious there isn’t a lot stopping you from doing it in the winter.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.