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Rear Antenna

Stephen Cannon

Well-Known Member
Joined
August 25, 2018
Messages
242
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25
City, State
DFW METROPLEX
Year, Model & Trim Level
2018 Explorer Sport
Shame on Ford for designing external mast antennas in this day and age. Don't try to say they can't put it anywhere else because they managed to embed the AM/FM antenna into the rear window of my 14 Taurus SHO and the rear quarter window of the 15 Expedition.

Make a note for those of you that use commercial car washes. It was a lot easier on my 2012 Escape because the antenna was up front in my field of view. The rear mast antenna from what I can see has a VERY HIGH chance of getting pulled off in the wash tunnel. Possibly just the antenna but hopefully a wash brush doesn't get wrapped around and pull the whole base from the roof. Remember most car washes assume no liability.

You will have to make yourself some sort of reminder but I recommend removing the antenna mast before the wash. Yes it is a reach for some of you more vertically challenged but it should just screw right off. Counter Clockwise a few turns and your done. Re-install after the wash is complete. Yes time consuming and potential to forget especially with antenna mast at the rear top but I personally don't trust that the mast will not get caught on anything. Minimum lost antenna, possible damage to yours or other vehicles, maximum possibility of getting the base pulled from the roof.
 



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Must have been a 2018 cost cutting move.

My 2017 just has the shark fin. No mast antenna.
 






I don’t see it as a cost cutting move since it apparently worked on other model years. Check one of the rear quarter windows see if it might be embedded there. Different design but I believe same material as the Rear Window Defroster.

Wonder if I could put a 2017 shark fin type on? Too bad it is body color so there would be the paint to match factor. My hockey puck for the Expedition and SHO worked fine. This experimentation and changes every mode year are pretty much defeating the purpose of cost cutting. Remember the mast antenna has to be kept in the inventory so that is one more item to keep around.
 






BTW. You trolling again Alex? That was a awful quick reply!
 






I believe the external mast on the 2018 Explorer is there to support the vehicle's WiFi Hotspot feature by connecting to AT&T's wireless network. I haven't tried, but perhaps the AM/FM radio works just fine with the mast removed.
 






I believe the external mast on the 2018 Explorer is there to support the vehicle's WiFi Hotspot feature by connecting to AT&T's wireless network.........
That is correct. They redesigned the antenna and also added a cellular antenna for Sync Connect (AKA Telematics Control Unit or TCU). It also has to do with the 4G modem. See post #93.

Peter
 






Thanks for the input. I might try removing and seeing if I can get AM/FM. If I can then the mast could come off. I use the major features like SYNC, NAV, AM/FM, Sirius a lot more than the 4G Wi-Fi.
 






The mast looks to be the same as the one on the 2011-15. I've had no problems with it, and I don't recall ever seeing any reported.

I tried using a stubby mast and my AM/FM reception dropped to unacceptable, with a lot of static.
 






I would say look at most other company's SUV's and you will see a lot of them doing it the same way. I run mine though a car wash all the time and have never had a problem. As for taken it off and seeing if it works, it may when you are close to a station but it will not be clear. As for it being WiFi and AM/FM in the same antenna, I will have to check about that because they are such different frequency's I am not sure how that would work in the electronics world.
 






I like to troll you for sport, Mr. Cannon, but less so today.

I didn't catch the item of the TCU. Shocked it needs the antenna for that, but I'm not the engineer. I still wouldn't put it past a cost cutting item, well advised or not.
 






Thanks for the input. I might try removing and seeing if I can get AM/FM. If I can then the mast could come off. I use the major features like SYNC, NAV, AM/FM, Sirius a lot more than the 4G Wi-Fi.

What happened when you did this?
 






I had a 2014, with the mast antenna, wouldn't go in my garage, because it caught on the door. I put on a stubby antenna. My 2016 has the sharkfin and that solved the problem. I'd hate to go back to a mast.
 






I had a 2014, with the mast antenna, wouldn't go in my garage, because it caught on the door. I put on a stubby antenna. My 2016 has the sharkfin and that solved the problem. I'd hate to go back to a mast.
Looks like the 2019 and 2020 have gone back to the "fin".

Peter
 












2019 antenna is same as 2018...has the extra mast antenna for am/fm.
I knew I should have checked that. I thought I'd seen a picture of one with the shark fin. I guess I've been looking at too many 2020 pictures. Thank you.

Peter
 






I knew I should have checked that. I thought I'd seen a picture of one with the shark fin. I guess I've been looking at too many 2020 pictures. Thank you.

Peter

No worries...sometimes the dealers will show pics without the radio masts screwed on, so it looks like a regular fin
 






Who listens to fm anymore?:D. I removed my mast, and haven't noticed any loss of reception. What i do worry about is water/ice in the hole.
 






I bought the 2" Stubby from Amazon to try. Hopefully it works well.
 






Who listens to fm anymore?:D. I removed my mast, and haven't noticed any loss of reception. What i do worry about is water/ice in the hole.

Just pliers to remove?
 



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Just pliers to remove?

Twist/unscrew by hand usually, but may take some pliers if really snug...and the 2” stubby antenna works great on my 2015.

I put a shark fin cover over the antenna on my 2018 and it works great.
 






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