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Network Quality

Diagnosing Telephone Issues



Problem with one phone:
  1. If only one of your phones does not work, unplug it and plug in a working phone. If you have only one phone, borrow a working phone and plug it into the jack of the non-working phone. If that phone works, you know the problem is with the original phone. Check your warranty or contact the store where you purchased the phone.
  2. If you have a Network Interface Device (A gray box attached to your house or building where the telephone company attaches the outside wires, which will be located near or under your power company meter base.), you can plug a working phone into the Network Interface Device (click to see detailed instructions).
    1. Wait 10 to 15 minutes, then plug in the base cord from the known working telephone. You are now connected directly to Ironton Telephone Company's network.
    2. If there is no dial tone at the Network Interface Device, the problem is probably in the outside line. Contact Ironton Telephone Company repair.
  3. If you have a normal dial tone at the Network Interface Device, the problem is not in Ironton Telephone Company's network. The trouble is either in the wiring or jack(s) inside your house, building, or in your telephone equipment.


Problems with one or more phones:

If you are having any of the following problems on all of your phones:

  • No dial tone
  • Cannot call in or out
  • Cannot hear or be heard
  • Noise or static

Note: One faulty piece of telephone equipment can cause a problem on all of your phones.

  1. See Step 2 in problem for single phone.
  2. See Step 3 in problem for single phone.
  3. Unplug every piece of telephone equipment including cordless phone bases, answering machines, computers, modems, burglar alarms, etc., then plug in a phone that you know is working into the first jack.
    1. Leave the phone plugged into the jack for 2 to 5 minutes and check for dial tone again.
    2. If you still have dial tone, unplug the phone and move it to the next jack you are using.
      • Continue this process until you have checked all jacks have been checked.
    3. If you plug your phone into a jack and you do not get dial tone remove the jack from the wall.
      1. Check the jack for broken wires or shorts (wires touching two terminals).
        • A short in the jack will cause all jacks to exhibit no dial tone.
      2. Reattach broken wires to terminals.
        • Do not wrap the wired around the terminal several times this will cause the wire to cut into itself and break.
        • Use a single hook style loop.
  4. If you have plugged the know working phone into all jacks and you get dial tone.
    1. Start plugging all phones, answering machines, computers, modems, burglar alarms, etc. back into where they were originally plugged.
    2. Wait five minutes between each phone or device and check for dial tone before moving to the next device until you find the device causing the problem.
      • Cordless phone bases, answering machines, computers, modems and burglar alarms are effected the most during electrical storms.


Problems with Cordless telephones:

  1. Power cycle base and all handsets to ensure the handsets are properly synced with the base.
    1. Disconnect the power cord from the base station.
    2. Remove the batteries from all of the handsets.
  2. Leave disconnected for 1 minute before reconnecting power to base and re-installing batteries in handsets.
  3. Replace handset batteries or a regular basis as recommended by the manufacturer.
  • It is recommended to have at least one working standard (corded) telephone on hand for use during power outages or testing at the Network Interface Device (NID).


Problems with Answering Machines:

  1. Disconnect from the power outlet and leave disconnected for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Replace backup batteries if the device is equipped.
  3. Verify all settings are correct.
    • Note: Sometimes during or after a storm you may experience no dial tone when cordless phones or answering machines are in use.
    • Unplug your equipment from its power source for 5 to 10 minutes then reconnect it.