Should you replace old splitters?

If you’re a longtime DIRECTV customer you might be looking at your setup and wondering if it’s time to upgrade. That system might have been the latest and greatest in 2013, but is it time to look at something new? I’m not talking about your DVR or dish, I’m talking about your splitters. Those splitters might be caked in dust at this point and you might be wondering if it’s time to replace them.

In general, no.

However, I do believe that occasionally an examination of your home theater system and that includes the splitters. For the most part, splitters don’t wear out unless they’re mistreated. By mistreated, I mean left out in the weather, or put in a location where they could freeze or overheat, or something like that. The exception to the rule is the splitter you see above. If you still have any of these DIRECTV splitters without a green sticker on them, you’re really going to be better off in the long run replacing them with the updated version which is designed specifically to let you share programs between receivers. It’s been years since I’ve seen these non-green-label ones “in the wild” but if you got your DIRECTV installation in 2009 or so, you might still have them and be wondering why you are having problems with sharing programs or using internet services.

The other category of splitter that I’d think about replacing is any antenna splitter you bought in a home store or discount store with a gold metallic color. It’s not the color that’s really so bad but this fake-gold-plating usually indicates a poor-quality part. I would replace a splitter like this with something similar from our product catalog... and if you don’t know what you’re looking for, leave a comment after this article and I’ll help you.

Splitters that should be replaced

While you’re looking at your splitters, check for discoloration of the metal or an overall dull or corroded appearance. If you see hard water stains, that doesn’t mean that there’s something wrong yet, but it might be a good idea to relocate the splitter so it isn’t getting water on it. Sooner or later that water’s going to be a problem.

I’d also be looking for cracked or worn weather boots. Weather boots are those rubber things that (should) be present at the connection point between the cable and the splitter. Cracked or disintegrating weather boots are that way for a reason. It’s usually because of overexposure to the sun and that’s a sign the whole splitter should probably be replaced.

This sort of simple check is going to really pay dividends for you in the future. It doesn’t take a lot of time but it keeps your antenna or satellite system healthy. That way when the bad weather does hit, you won’t be stuck in the house with no TV. Because, no one wants that.

Whether you’re looking at a simple splitter or something more complex to tune up your DIRECTV home theater system, check out the great selection of parts that you’ll find at Solid Signal.

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.