Doorbell Transformer getting HOT


Old 02-28-07, 05:01 PM
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Doorbell Transformer getting HOT

I came home today and smelled something burning,(electrical), it was coming from the cellar, the doorbell transformer was red hot, what a smell, There were 2 wirers connected to the transformer and I unhooked them. This is old wiring in this house (1926), is it going to be safe now that I uphooked those wirers? Should I have that transformer removed from the electrical box, I don't use that doorbell anymore.

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Old 02-28-07, 06:17 PM
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Disconnecting the doorbell transformer should solve your problem. Be sure the live wires are appropriately wire-nutted and the box has a cover on it so you don't cause any other problems. I'd also suggest removing and discarding the transformer so someone in the future doesn't have the bright idea to reconnect it.

While the transformer windings may have gone bad, a more likely cause to the overheating transformer is a short circuit. If you're not using it, it's not a problem.

Old 02-28-07, 07:51 PM
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OP wrote he disconnected two wires but it's not clear if they were the primary or secondary. If the short was on the secondary side the disconnect may have eliminated the immediate problem but the primary may have been damaged and just waiting to cause a problem.
Old 02-28-07, 08:07 PM
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This was probably caused by a short on the secondary side. The thing that immediately springs to mind is a stuck doorbell button by the front door. The fix might be as simple as replacing the button.

If you have an ohmmeter, you can test for resistance between the two wires you disconnected from the secondary side. If they read zero ohms, then replace the doorbell button and repeat the test. If they now read infinite ohms, then that was the problem and you can reconnect the wires (and keep an eye on it for a few days).

You may or may not have ruined the transformer.
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