Troubleshooting Your Telephone

Problems may arise with your telephone service. The issue may be your telephone set, in your building's inside wiring or in the outside lines and equipment that CVTC uses to provide your service. You are responsible for repairs if the problem is in your telephone equipment or the inside wiring. Simple tests can help you determine whether to call CVTC for assistance. These tests may save you time and money. There is a charge if the trouble is in your telephone equipment or inside wiring and the telephone company is called out for a repair. There is no charge if the trouble is in the outside lines or switching equipment and was not caused by negligence on your part.

How to Troubleshoot

If you are having trouble making or receiving phone calls, or the quality of the calls is poor, you may try the following before calling 611 for support.

  • Check to make sure the phone cord is plugged in (to the outlet and to the phone handset)
  • Check to see if the phone cord is damaged or broken.
  • Check the buttons on your handset to see if they are sticking (if so, try cleaning the unit according to manufacturer's instructions).
  • Check to see if another phone in your home or business is off the hook. If it is, that may be preventing other phones from calling out or receiving calls.
  • Check to make sure phone accessories (answering or fax machines, computers, modems, security system, and telephone sets) are operational.
    • To check, unplug the phone cord from the unit or the jack and check for damage. Leave everything unplugged for 5 minutes. Then try plugging in phone sets one at a time to see if the trouble still exists.
  • If all of the above appear in good working order to you, go to your network interface box (this is the box installed on the outside of your home or building where the phone line enters). Test to determine if the problem is inside or outside the house:
    • Take a working phone to the network interface box (single line phone only).
    • Remove the modular plug from the test jack and after waiting 1 minute with the jack empty, insert the modular plug from your phone.

If the same problem occurs:
The problem is probably in the phone line. Call our telephone technical support desk (611 from your phone) and, if we determine that it is in the phone line, we will repair the lines at no charge to you.

If the problem does not occur:
The problem is probably in your wiring. Call our telephone technical support desk (611 from your phone) and, if we determine the issue is with your inside wiring, charges may apply.

If the problem is in your telephone set
follow the instructions on your warranty or contact your equipment retailer for repair or replacement.

Installing Your Phone

All new telephones are modular, which means they come with a clip attachment on the cord that connects easily with a modular telephone outlet. A modular outlet has a small hole that the clip fits. Just squeeze the clip between your thumb and forefinger and insert it. You're all hooked up! To disconnect it, just squeeze the clip again and gently remove it.

Since deregulation of the telephone industry, telephone equipment has become available from many sources. It's a competitive business and we cannot recommend particular suppliers to you. The new modular telephones have, however, made installation easy for owners of equipment.

The telephone outlet in your home may be of the old four-prong variety. In that case, you can either purchase a simple converter that plugs directly into the outlet and provides a modular style connection, or you may decide to replace the old outlet with a new modular one. That's an easy task, requiring only a few moments and a screwdriver.

To install a modular outlet, notice first that the outlet has four terminals. Each of the four has a lead wire attached, each of a different color (green, red, black, yellow).

After removing the old outlet, wires from your home's phone wiring system will be visible. Match the colors of the wires extending from the wall of your home to the colored leads of the modular outlet (red-to-red, green to green, etc.) Wrap the end of each house lead wire around the base of the appropriately colored terminal on the back of the outlet, and tighten each screw with a screwdriver. Then attach the modular outlet to your wall and secure the screws.

Please remember:

  • Match wire colors.
  • Don't let the metal parts of any wire or lead touch those of a different colors.
  • Don't pinch the wires or leads while replacing the cover.

Telephone Safety

The telephone is one of the safest appliances in your home or office. There are, however, a few situations where a telephone user needs to be cautious:

  • Use of the telephone near water - the telephone should not be used when you are in the bathtub, shower or pool. Immersion of the telephone or handset in water could cause electrical shock.
  • Use of the telephone during an electrical storm - you should avoid using a telephone during an electrical storm in your immediate area; calls of an urgent nature should be brief. There is a remote risk of dangerous electrical shock from lightning when using the telephone during a nearby electrical storm.
  • Use of the telephone to report a gas leak - if you think you have found a gas leak, you should not use a telephone in the vicinity of the leak until the leak is repaired. The telephone contains electrical contacts that could generate a tiny spark when you lift the handset and dial. While unlikely, it may be possible for this spark to trigger an explosion if the gas concentration is high enough.

REMEMBER: The possibility of electrical shock always exists when dealing with telephone wires. Use caution. We are not responsible for damage or personal injury due to hazardous voltages and electrical shock.

Telephone Troubleshooting Call Before You Dig Troubleshooting Phone