lets talk telephones

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by caroline00, Jan 17, 2005.

  1. caroline00

    caroline00 Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    a week ago, we had no dial tone. They came out and got us a dial tone but we couldnt call out or recieve calls due to static. WE took the jack apart (we dont have inside wiring protection) and found a broken wire so we fixed it.

    now, we can call out and recieve calls from long distance, local long distance, local from a few miles from us and on out.

    WE cannot call nor recieve calls from our neighbors...we get very loud static!
    so whats your guess? I just called the phone company again... :(
  2. idahocurs

    idahocurs Well-Known Member

    Jul 31, 2004
    SE Idaho
    That is interesting and I'm sorry I can't help but let us know what you find out...

  3. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    You can take the phone outside and find the box that the telephone line runs into. This is called the Phone Company Demarcation Box. They are usually green and you can get into your side of it. There will be a modular telephone jack in there that you can test from. This will let you know if the problem is on your side or the telco side. My guess is that it is a telco problem. My phone went bad this fall and it was mice in the telephone pedestal several miles away.

    That so called inside wiring protection is a racket for bilking old ladies out of a monthly charge. The telcos make millions off of that scam mostly from little old ladies who feel better knowing they can just call the phone company if something goes wrong with the wires inside.

    Telcos scamming little old grandmas....where did I put my red box? <rummages through the drawer>
  4. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

    Jul 12, 2003
    east ont canada
    there may be a problem at one of the local boxes. water ,frost and heat can jamb up the works .sounds like a ground loose .quint,aint that a scheme? and if you or i tried that it would be a crime! adding up the monthly fee you could tear out and put in the phones three times a year!
  5. jackie c

    jackie c Well-Known Member

    Jul 17, 2004
    Had a problem with mine the other day, and checked everything leading to the demarcation box, turns out it was some kind of card at their office. They tried to sell me that 'protecton' I told them no thanks, I can manage. All you have to do is plug in a the d-box to find out if it is your problem or theirs. And the wiring and phone inside the house is way less expensive to fix than their 'insurance' . Yes legalized scam for sure.
  6. Ana Bluebird

    Ana Bluebird Well-Known Member Supporter

    Dec 8, 2002
    OH, don't get me started on SBC (our local telephone company that owns the lines to my house). They are so bad here (the lines AND the service)! I end up fighting with them every two years about something cause no one knows what is going on there. Call once, get someone, you're told one thing, call back, get a hold of someone else, they tell you something else, get your bill, they've done something else. They try to sell me that stuff too. We have a community box over across the road that goes out every time it rains. I call, they put me on a list (usually long because lots of boxes go out when it rains). Sometimes they try to charge me for it, but I know how to check my house (after 10 years of this, why wouldn't I?) Yes, I've had those cheap WM (Walmart) wires go bad in my house and have had to replace them, but I wired my whole house myself so know what's where. Sometimes when I call to report a problem, I discover I'm talking to someone in India! Last time it was in Texas--I live in Missouri. No wonder it's such a mess! The guy told me Missouri wires are evidently terrible, that I should call management and throw fits to get them replaced---sure, they are going to replace all the wires on my say-so. Whatever!
  7. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

    Feb 24, 2003
    I have two lines run to my house one is clear,the other one has so much static you can't even think of talking on it.

    big rockpile
  8. electronrider

    electronrider Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2004
    West Central Indiana
    OK, I work for Verizon, let me educate you on how a typical phone line works.

    It starts at a card in what we call a central office. from that card, it goes to an intermediate distribution frame where we connect the phone line to a cable pair. This cable goes out into the field, where it may be connected to other cables via cross boxes. ( those little boxes you see beside the road.) from there, the wires run to your demarc. ( the little box on your home).

    They also have systems that run out of small cabinets in the middle of nowhere, but essentially its the same thing. ( card-tie cable-home).

    When you have static on the line, the first thing you should do is check from the demarc. this proves that the problem is not yours. 99 percent of the time, it is a cable issue. This time of year, we get a lot of problems with rodents going into our ped's ( the little boxes by the roadsite) and chewing up the cabling to the point where it breaks ( no dial tone) or just strips the insulation ( static, cross talk from other customers, etc.)

    As far as SBC goes, they are the absolute WORST people in the telecommunications world to deal with. They never call you back, and they always wanna say its your problem ( on everything, not just phones) until you almost have to beat them with a stick to get them to do anything. If you have a trouble ticket with any telephone company, and they miss their commitment time, you CAN file a complaint. This goes to a public service ( municipal, not the phone company) board, which grills telco's regurlarly on this.

    As far as the inside wiring agreement, I agree, dont waste your money. Most Phone technicians can find the problem inside of an hour, and that charge is still less than the yearly fee.

    As far as weather related problems, this is due to crappy cabling, and it ends up getting wet, thus shorting out the wiring. This is an ongoing battle with the rodents, and breakdown of cabling over the years.
  9. bugstabber

    bugstabber Chief cook & weed puller Supporter

    May 12, 2002
    South Dakota
    We had a nail go through our phone line, and it made a loud hissing howling noise. Luckily my son had some of the wire and he came out and fixed it.