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Even with music streaming services, many people still enjoy a good radio show. Tune in from your vehicle with these powerful and durable car antennas. Radio was a worldwide phenomenon decades ago. Everyone could listen to the hottest songs, learn the latest news and even follow the play-by-play of their favorite sports team in real time. But nowadays, with more ways to enjoy ourselves than ever before, not many people remain interested in radio.
But this does not mean that radio is obsolete, and many people still enjoy tuning in to their favorite station. Thanks to the built-in radio on most cars, you can tune in wherever you drive. These radio antennas are a great way to stay connected, so whether you’re on your way to the grocery store or picking up the kids from school, there’s always something to listen to.
Top 2022 car antennas discussed in detail
If you’re looking for an antenna to match the color of your vehicle, look no further – this antenna from AntennaMastsRus is a classic antenna design with a modern twist. It’s not as tall as older antennas and can sit on top of your vehicle without obstructing your view too much. An interesting aspect of this antenna is the fact that it comes in eight different colors ranging from black and silver to more colorful options including blue, yellow and green. The colors may not always match your car’s paint perfectly, but in most cases they should be close enough to not make too much of a difference.
- Small, handy size
- Many colors available
- Car wash-proof design
- It may not match your paint job
The Ford F-150 is a beast of a truck, but that doesn’t mean it won’t eventually need a replacement part or an upgrade. If you’re looking for a new antenna for your pickup, consider this Rydonair replacement antenna. It’s compatible with all F-150 models, from 2009 through to the latest 2022 model, so even if your truck is a little old, you should be fine. This antenna is quite easy to install – it’s just a matter of screwing it in. Its optimized construction allows it to work well with both AM and FM channels, and the low-profile design won’t change the look of your F in the end. -150 from too much.
- Slim, unobtrusive design
- Good reception compared to competitors
- Quick and easy installation
- Only compatible with Ford F-150s
The next antenna on our list is compatible with a surprising number of vehicles. It fits a variety of Jeep and Dodge models, so if you have one of these, chances are this antenna will fit your needs. The matte black finish makes it relatively unobtrusive, and it’s quite sturdy and durable – made from Thai rubber, this antenna can handle all kinds of weather. This antenna is quite easy to install and the manufacturer offers responsive customer service. This is always a great thing to have, especially if you find yourself dealing with an issue that is quite technical in nature. At a decent price of $19.99, this antenna is a solid choice that isn’t too expensive.
- Compatible with various Jeep and Dodge models
- Responsive Customer Support
- Sturdy, unobtrusive design
- Installation difficulty varies by model
The previous entries in our list have all been designed with a specific car make in mind, but this next car antenna is suitable for a wider range of vehicles. Along with cars, it works with ATVs and boats and can even be used at home if you wish. The antenna has a 16.9-inch mast, which makes it fairly high, and it connects to a 55-inch cable that helps with the necessary wiring. It offers a range of up to 10 miles, allowing for a decent connection from quite a distance, and comes in black and white so you can choose the color that suits your vehicle or home.
- Compatible with many different vehicles
- Available in two colors
- 180 degree rotatable base for greater mobility
- Not optimized for a particular vehicle
One major difference between modern antennas and those made in the early 2000s is that they are generally a lot shorter today. Manufacturers are now able to fit more powerful technology into smaller spaces, and the need for long and collapsible antennas is (thankfully) a thing of the past. This Votex antenna is a great example of how a shorter size doesn’t come at the expense of high performance. Despite its small size, this antenna allows you to receive signals from tens of kilometers away with little to no problems. It has a very durable construction, making it resistant to all weather conditions it faces, and offers the benefit of a risk-free purchase – if you are not satisfied, return the antenna and the manufacturer will refund your purchase in full.
- Premium German engineering
- Small but durable frame
- Full Refund Policy
- Some problems with AM reception
Buying Guide: Car Antennas
Even if you don’t listen to the radio much, it’s always a good idea to have a working antenna. This guide covers some car antenna basics.
A brief background on car radios and antennas
How radios found a home in cars
Car radios have been around for a long time – a simple AM radio was added to cars in the 1930s during mass production, but over time, as technology improved, FM support was also added.
Why were radios added to cars in the first place? Simple – to give drivers and passengers some form of entertainment as they drive on. Especially for the driver, there isn’t much to do other than pay attention to the road, and this can be quite tiring, especially on long car journeys.
That’s why a good radio station can make all the difference. Drivers and passengers alike can listen to the radio DJ’s song selections, join the play-by-play of two competing sports teams, and check the local weather forecast. Radio has always been popular, so it’s a good idea to keep using them in cars.
When car antennas come into play
There are a few limitations to using radio as a form of entertainment, but perhaps most experienced by those living outside of major cities is the fact that a radio station’s signal can only travel so far. At some point the signal will start to sound choppy and interrupted by noise, and eventually you will be unable to get a signal at all.
The reason for this does not actually depend on the antenna, but rather on the beam on which a signal can be sent. Depending on the frequency, a signal can be lost over a certain distance, after which you are left with only noise.
But that doesn’t mean every antenna is good enough – in fact, it’s important that you invest in a solid antenna. Why? Because antennas have to brave the elements. Rain or shine, snow or wind, your antenna has to deal with all kinds of weather conditions. With this in mind, you need a solid antenna for your car.
Points to consider when buying a car antenna
While each antenna will eventually achieve the same thing, there are a few differences in antennas that may be worth considering.
Antennae are often less than a foot long these days. This makes them fairly compact and does not hinder your view while driving. However, not all antennas are the same length and some can even be twice as long as others, making it difficult to decide which antenna to choose.
It may be tempting to think that the longer the antenna, the better the performance, but this isn’t always the case. It all comes down to what is inside the antenna, and the only real way to measure this is by looking at the product specifications.
If height isn’t always indicative of performance, does height matter? To a certain extent, yes. Although antennas are designed with minimalism in mind, they can still take up some space, and this can be annoying if they are in your field of view. For cars with antenna locations within your line of sight, consider buying something fairly short and inconspicuous.
The outside of antennas is usually covered with some type of material, often rubber. This not only serves a functional purpose, but allows for a bit of creative expression as well. Antennas come in a variety of colors so you can get one to match the color of your car if you feel like it.
Most car antennas are standard black. This is good for most cars as black goes with just about any color you can think of. Your tires are also (probably) black, so at least they’ll match some part of your car. You can never really go wrong with black, and if the color doesn’t bother you, consider going with this option.
Things get a little more complicated when it comes to colored antennas. Colored antennas are harder to match because not every antenna will be the exact same color shade as your vehicle. An orange antenna can be slightly brighter than, for example, your orange car.
This minor difference may not matter to some, but it can be a real annoyance to others. If you’re okay with it, don’t worry, but it could be a cause for concern. If you need the color that matches your car perfectly, go for a traditional black antenna instead.
Are they “car antennas” or “car antennas”?
A common misconception regarding the word “antenna” is that its plural form is “antennae”. While this is partially true, “antennas” is used to refer to the antenna found in bugs. Instead, use the plural form “antennas” when referring to the type of antenna used in radios or the like. With enough context, it doesn’t matter which plural form you use, but it’s always good to use the correct form just in case.
How we chose our favorite car antennas
Our car antennas are chosen based on a number of factors. We consider elements such as length, compatibility and even color. We also consider the brand of each antenna, as well as their history with other products. Finally, we look at customer reviews to understand first-hand how to use the product, in the hope that it will help you make a more informed purchase decision.
Frequently asked questions about car antennas
Q: Do all cars have antennas?
A car must have an antenna as standard if it also has a radio.
Q: Why do cars have radios?
Cars have radios to provide entertainment to drivers while driving.
Q: Are car antennas waterproof?
Car antennas are waterproof, so passengers can listen to the radio even during rain showers.