If you're running some older analog-only television sets in that extra bedroom or summer home, you may already know that come February 2009, those older televisions that get their signals using an over-the-air antenna will go blank as the FCC shuts off the analog television airwaves to make room for more wireless services here in the U.S.

Now, this won't affect most of us -- cable and satellite customers won't notice any difference -- but for those televisions that need to receive signals from some sort of antenna, you'll need a new converter box. Basically, these $60 (roughly) boxes will allow older, analog-only television sets to receive the newer digital (HDTV) signals broadcast by just about every network television station and turn that signal into an older analog signal that those older televisions can then display.

For those of us with boats, cabins and other places that use analog-only television, what to do! Well, the U.S. Government will supply two $40 coupons for each U.S. household to help defray most of the cost of up to two of these converter boxes just by supplying a name and mailing address.

These coupons won't be mailed until sometime in late February (or later), when national consumer electronics retailers are expected to have the analog converter boxes available. You can apply for your two free $40 coupons by visiting www.dtv2009.gov today and get your name on the list. If you need a few of these boxes, the two coupons will save your wallet $80 come a year from this February.

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