Phone only rings once


Old 08-03-01, 12:27 AM
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After reading most if not all of the related posts, I think I've got a new one for you. I also want to say how impressed I am with the quality of the responses, and the easy to use websight.

This is an intermittant problem. My phone only rings once, then stops, but if I answer it quickly, the caller is still connected. If I don't pick it up quick enough, there is a dial tone. I do have a second line that works just fine, and line 1 worked fine for two or three months before this problem.

If I use line 2 to call line 1, it rings once then clicks as if it's been answered. There is never a problem calling out on line 1, there is always a dial tone.

The home and wiring is new (1 year old). To troubleshoot, I've tried disconnecting the line to the modem, and the line to the answering machine. Didn't resolve the problem. This particular jack is the only one with both lines hooked up, all of the others in the house are line 1 only. I only have one phone that is equipped for 2 lines. Could it be a problem in this phone?

Thank you in advance for your help.
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Old 08-03-01, 05:41 AM
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Most likely it's the phone itself. Do you have another single-line phone?

If the wall jack is a dual line/single jack, take it off the wall and look at the back. There should be 4 wires connected.

(New house) probably has cat5 phone wire. Looking at the jack from where you plug a phone in, the two "center" pins are line 1 and the two outer pins are line 2. Make sure they're not bent, laying flat, or out of line. On the back of the jack there will be a blue-white/blue pair of wires (line 1) and an orange-white/orange pair (line 2). (There may also be a green-white/green pair and a brown-white/brown pair, but they may not be connected to anything - that's OK.)

Take note of what goes to what.

Remove the blue-white/blue pair and hook to a single jack.

Plug your 2-line phone back into the original (dual) jack and a single-line phone into the single jack. Phone line 1 from line 2. If it works OK, it's probably the phone.

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Old 08-03-01, 06:09 AM
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If it rings at all, I suspect the wires are ok.

Disconnect all phones on the line including any computer or fax machine, try 2 different phones(one at a time) with 2 or 3 jacks, check it to see if the problem still exists.

I suspect either a problem with a phone or phone provider, my bets are with a phone.

Do you have any identacall filter devices or perhaps built into the phone ?

Old 08-04-01, 08:08 PM
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Two line phones.

Some two line phones have a common tip connection in the phone. If the polarity of either line is reversed it will cause the problem you are seeing. The old apprentice limerick may be helpful. Remember the five Rs. The ring is ridged or red, readable to ground, and terminates on the right. This rhyme comes from the colors of the original station wire used in homes which was three conductors. The red and the green were the ring and the tip respectively. The solid drop wire had a ridge on one side to identify the ring conductor in the drop. The ridged drop conductor and the red station wire conductor were attached or terminated to the right side of the station protector to keep the polarity correct.
The yellow was connected to ground to allow the bell to ring. The bell was connected between either the tip or the ring and ground. This permitted the party line to ring only half of the phones connected to it because the ringing current was sent on ground and one side of the line. Only the ringers attached to that side of the line would ring.
Take a meter and make sure that the wires attached to the red & yellow jack wires are 48 volts to ground. Remember that the red & the yellow may shock a fellow but the green and the black voltage lack. In the multi pair cable the white wire with the colored stripe should be the ring of each pair. So in the blue pair the blue is the tip and connects to the green or the black lead of the jack. The white with the blue stripe is the ring side of the line and it connects to the red or the yellow lead of the jack. On the jack the red and the green are one pair and the yellow and black are the other pair. You must carefully avoid splitting the pairs. If you have the ring of the line on one pair of the jack and the tip of the line on the other the line may still work but it will be noisy and the ringing will be unreliable. I suspect that you have either reversed the polarity of one or both lines or you have split the pairs. If you have further questions please post them. Or right to me directly.
Old 08-16-01, 09:50 AM
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phone rings once

This may sound assine, but look at your phone bills. Are you being charged for three way calling? Then that is your problem.
My phone was doing the same thing, at alll hours of the day and night, for approximately two months, and were driving me crazy. I did almost all that was posted here with no effect. My phone billing cycle is on a two month period. So,while looking at my newly received phone bills I had a revelation! There tucked away on page three or four, Three way calling charges! Huh?
I challenged these charges and this is what I found out.
It seems that the phone company, in the New York area where I live, instituted new software into the computer for three way calling whether you asked for it or not. To cause this to activate is very simple. This is what I was told by a customer service rep, while one person is on the line hit the "flash" button and the disconnect, dial the new number and that person will now be one the line, again hit the disconnect and all three are on the line. Great, if you want it.
It seems that my phone, a AT&T trimline 401 has the "flash" key in line with the ringer volume switch. The ringer switch, when set to high, hits the " flash" button activating it. So that if you were on the line, hung up, then quickly picked up the phone and dialed the new number it would register as a three way call,even though it was not. This will be constantly activated to cause your phone to act as it is. There are a lot of problems with that software.
It seemed that my billing cycle, the software intro, and the phone problem all coincided so I can only draw one conclusion. I called, had it deactivated for my line and have not had the problem since.
Inquire as to whether your provider has installed three way calling, and if you don't need it, have it disabled. This may have some revelance to your problem.
As I said remote but a possibility.
Let us know how you made out.

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