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  1. #1
    DF Rookie SiobhanT3's Avatar
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    Default Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    We have newly installed phone line with a number of secondary sockets. The only phone we ever got to work here is a single digital cordless (BT Spirit 3000). When we try to install any digital phone base with extra phones - we find the phone works fine to dial out. But will not ring when it is receiving incoming calls. We have tried both the BT Verve 450 and the iDect set of 3.

    BT are clueless. They say our line is fine. We have broadband on it, plus SKY and a burglar alarm - don't know if this is the problem. I KNOW that somewhere out there is a very wise BT person who knows the answer. But in the meantime I get the very lovely but useless lady in Mumbai.

    A few people have suggested that the frequency of our digital phones maybe the problem. Obviously they have a wireless function (to speak to the extra phones from the base) and I wonder is this interfered with by our WiFi broadband? Alas, there is no way of changing the frequency of the phone (haven't looked at our router yet).

    Any help gratefully appreciated as this is driving me nuts. We have an old house on different levels and using only one phone (when you are 8.5 months pregnant) is becoming more and more unfeasible!

    Cheers

  2. #2
    DF Moderator EvilBoB's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Check the wiring in the extension sockets. Who put the extensions in? BT will only test as far as your master socket so if it's your own extension install (Or not BT) then calling them out will only incur a charge. It sounds like you might have the voltage the wrong way around going to your extensions (or not connected). Also how many extensions do you have? BT lines only support a REN of a certain figure (Look that up on WIKI) and every extension will add a value to it. Answerphones, faxes and modems add to this as well and if it goes over a certain value then you will have problems, noise and general issues with calls cutting off.

    Check out this page and search for "not ring" [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    It does mention the same problem you have and might point you in the right direction and save you a few quid

    Simply, many packets of plugs in the DIY sheds come with a little diagram on the back which often follows the BS numbering. If you do the logical thing and put a plug on assuming the numbers are as on the socket the phone may not ring (and, as Adrian Graham who asked for this section to be included found out, without knowing the numbering is askew much pulling of hair, weeping and gnashing of teeth can occur as you try to find the fault).
    If you still get stuck post back here as I do work for BT and know a few engineers that might be able to assist.
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  3. #3
    DF Moderator EvilBoB's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Oh - and if you only have one phone connected and don't intend to use the extensions I recommend disconnecting the extensions altogether from the master socked (Something you should also be able to find info on via google). This will improve your overall line quality and could possibly give you faster DSL
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  4. #4
    DF Rookie SiobhanT3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Thank you so so much for replying. I am so grateful (as it is really a rather dull problem...)

    The internal sockets were installed by our own electrician so there could be an issue there. But before I go fiddling with them I wondered how it could be (if it was installed incorrectly) that a single digital cordless phone (BT Spririt) would work on this socket, but the base unit plus extension (ie the BT Verve 450) would not?

    Also, I have tried using the base unit down at the Main socket in our plant room (installed by BT) and the result is the exactly the same?

    In terms of numbers of extensions... By this do you mean actual secondary sockets? In terms of number of secondary sockets, we must have 13 or 14! There is nothing else telephonic plugged into them (ie no fax or anything else). If the issue is REN totals then again the BT Spirit 3000 works (REN value 1) but the BT Verve does not (fully ie won't ring out) but its REN Value is 1 also.

    Hmmm. I am so confused.

  5. #5
    DF PwNagE kracken's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    If the total REN (Ringer Equivalence Number) of 4 is exceeded, the telephone may not ring.

    Some devices have REN values greater than one. The exact value should be found on a sticker on the equipment and in the manual.

    Phone or answer phone = 1 ren
    Fax = 1-1.5 ren
    Sky = 1.5 - 2.5 ren
    Factor in a bit extra if you have long extensions as well.

    Your phone sockets need to be 1 master socket and the rest of them need to be slave.

    Slave sockets have no capacitor inside them.

    No new socket should have more than 50 metres of cable between it and the master socket.

  6. #6
    DF Rookie SiobhanT3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Thanks so much Kracken. The REN issue seems to be the answer. We have disconnected the sky boxes from the phone line. Still no joy. We don't have anything else connected to the phone line that has a REN value (unless our broadband router does??). But what BoB mentions above is that our REN value may be too high just by virtue of the sheer number of "slave" extension sockets that we have throughout the house (even though there is nothing connected in them).

    Do these sockets have an inherent REN value of themselves? I note what you say about distance of cable to slave socket etc (I am thinking that the ones on the top floor may have more than 50 metres between them and the slave). The layout of the house is that the master socket is in the basement and there are 3 further floors above (old Victorian terrace). Would all this distance put an additional REN strain on the system?

    If indeed the REN values are the problem, I still wonder why the single digital BT phone (Spirit) works. But when I replace it with the Verve it doesn't - when both are listed as having a REN value of 1? My only conclusion is maybe that the Spririt's value is in actual fact maybe very very low eg 0.15 and the Verve has a full 1 value? (if that is indeed possible...)

    Is a REN booster going to be the answer do you think?

    Thanks once again for your help. Siobhan

  7. #7
    DF PwNagE kracken's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Un-used phone sockets (ie without anything plugged into them) should have no effect on the REN number or even your problem, unless they are incorrectly wired.

    A quick check would be to unplug everything out of your phone sockets and then go round one at a time and plug in a single phone (just a plain one, nothing fancy for now) and check to see if its accepting calls and ringing.

    Some telephone circuit details here ...

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

  8. #8
    DF Rookie SiobhanT3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Thanks again Kracken. We have literally nothing else plugged in - and the situation remains that the Spririt single digital phone works. The Verve mulitiple won't ring out. This is the same in both the mains socket and the secondary extension sockets. I checked it at a neighbours today and it worked - so the phone is not faulty.

    So my next step is to see of the extensions have been wired in incorrectly (thanks for the link!) as you seem to be saying that that could cause the REN values to be overloaded (but not if they are correctly wired). The last option may be that there is some fault in the actual line into the house that could be causing this perhaps (but as EBob is saying above I need to double check that its nothing internal before I get BT out...)

    Thanks for your help.

  9. #9
    DF Rookie SiobhanT3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Thanks again Kracken. We have literally nothing else plugged in - and the situation remains that the Spririt single digital phone works. The Verve mulitiple won't ring out. This is the same in both the mains socket and the secondary extension sockets. I checked it at a neighbours today and it worked - so the phone is not faulty.

    So my next step is to see of the extensions have been wired in incorrectly (thanks for the link!) as you seem to be saying that that could cause the REN values to be overloaded (but not if they are correctly wired). The last option may be that there is some fault in the actual line into the house that could be causing this perhaps (but as EBob is saying above I need to double check that its nothing internal before I get BT out...)

    Thanks for your help.

  10. #10
    DF PwNagE kracken's Avatar
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    Default Re: Digital phone won't ring out for incoming call!

    Something simple to check (easily overlooked) ....

    Ensure that the handset ringer volume hasn't been turned down or off.

    Also ....

    Switch the mains power off, wait five seconds and then turn it on again. This will reset your phone.

    Carry out a reset procedure on both the handset and the base to return the settings back to the factory default.

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