Telephone Trouble, HELP!!

About one week ago, I started hearding static in the background of my telephone conversations. That next day, all of my phones died. I have no dial tone.
The phone company came out and checked my NID on the outside of the house. They said everything was fine leading up to the house. The problem is inside somewhere. I verified the phone company's work by plugging in a telephone outside the house...sure enough, there's a dial tone outside.
I took advice from a sales clerk at home depot, and I cleaned the connections on the outside of the house with steel wool and a contact cleaner. I also cleaned the connections on the phone board inside the house. I also purchsed a phone line circuitry tester. I get a good reading on all the phone jacks that I use. So I know that the wiring isn't shot...but I still don't have a dial tone.
The strangest thing is that my DSL is still working fine. I've had no problems with my internet connection. I just don't have a dial done.
What is wrong, and how can I fix it???? Please help!!!
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

If you can remove all phones, DSL modem and filters. Just plug in one phone and see. Start from there.
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You probably have a bad device or a bad connection somewhere along the line. Get someone to help by listening on a single phone, then one-by-one disconnect each device that's plugged in, and disconnect it at the device, not the outlet. If your service starts to work doing that, then you've found your culprit. Don't forget to check that last device if all else works.
If it's not a device, it's probably a connection, and you can save time by visually inspecting while you do the prior test. For every cord you disconnect, look at the tiny brass connectors to see if there is visible corrosion, and also look inside the outlet with a flashlight. You may see whitish crud if it's mildew, or green on the metal connectiors if it's oxidation.
If you see something obvious you can try cleaning it out, but the parts are cheap enough to simply replace either an outlet or a wire.
You mentioned that dsl is on this same line, so I suppose it's possible that one of the dsl filters is the culprit. Your provider should be able to provide trouble-shooting for those, or maybe you have some spares.
If you've been having the same wet, ultra-humid weather I have, and for as long, then I'd think it's most likely a connection, but I don't know what can go wrong with the dsl filters.
Keith

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Why do you say not at the outlet? Not that much chance there is a problem in the wire, but why do you say it?

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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

You have to use the biblical method, seek and ye shall find. I had a static problem when I mooved into this house that had a jack in almost every room with them all daisy-chained together. Ended up being the short run from the NID (I always thought it was TNI) to the block in the basement. Insulation cracked where it went through the wall and corroded the wires.
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That's the first time I have seen "TNI", but it works. We call the device a SNI (Standard Network Interface). Industry wonks later decided it's a "NID" (Network Interface Device). You'll notice the common letters are "NI" - Network Interface. It is a handy device if installed properly.
--
:)
JR

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Call your own phone from a cellphone. Do you get a ring, or a busy signal? I suspect you get a busy signal.
If you hear a ring in the cellphone, but your house phones are not ringing, that means there is an open circuit (a cut wire) in your wiring. But since your phone line tester gives you good reading, this is not a likely scenerio.
If you get a busy signal, that means some devices in your home is off hook, or there is a short circuit (which is same as off hook as far as the phone company is concern). But if you have a short circuit, your phone line tester would also indicate bad wiring.
So this leaves the most likely scenerio: there is a defective phone device. If this is the case, then unplugging all your phone devices (phones, fax, modem, surge protectors, set-top boxes, satellite TV box, burglar alarm) should fix the problem. Plug them in one at a time until the problem comes back.
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first try unplugging everything! all phones DSL modem, cordless phones satellite tv boxes anything thats connected to phone line like water or other meters.
now try a single corded phone, does it work?
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of course the quick temporary fix...
plug a cheap phone extension cord into the NID and run wire in window to a single phone
its a quick temporary fix:)
MAY interrubt your DSL, kinda depends.. on how the DSL was wired.
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wrote:

Definitely. I've been running that way for 4 of the last 5 years. From my computer room, I plugged back into the house through a jack and connected half of the house. It would have been the whole house, but I had to disconnect the wire that goes to the attic and then down to two outlets in my bedroom and one in my bathroom.
What I don't understand is: Since the phone line is de facto running through the main connector in the basement and up the short wire to where it would connect to the NID, why can't I just go back to using that short wire to the NID? When I try, the problem** reappears.
**Strange noises on the line (loud humming iirc), or silence.

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mm wrote:

Sounds like a problem in the NID or after it on that line. See below.

Was it a high-frequency squealing or warbling noise? That might be DSL signal on the phone line; that line may be attached to the wrong output on the filter.
A rookie installer facing a tangle of wires might crimp a phone line onto the unfiltered output. Since he'll still get voice/dialtone, he might think it's OK.
If it's a 60 cycle hum, something may not be grounded properly, and is picking up induction from nearby electrical cables. You don't have a short to house power on that line, do you?
HTH
RD
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wrote:

Thanks but I don't have DSL. It's the original poster who does, I think.

I'll keep that in mind. Thanks.

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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

This ain't rocket surgery; you phone's broke.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

It's too bad they didn't tell you what the TEST results were - "looking" into the house. My guess is a wet short.
Unplug *EVERYTHING* that is connected to the line. ...and I mean EVERYTHING: Set-top satellite box, security system, modem, water meter remote reader, yadda, yadda. (Got that? *EVERYTHING*)
Take a corded telephone - that you have tested and KNOW to be in good, working order - and plug it in.
- If you get a dial tone, that implicates something that is still unplugged. Reconnect one phone at-a-time and check for dial tone after each reconnection. If you get NO dial tone after plugging-in a set, THAT set is the trouble maker.
- If you still get NO dial tone, the trouble is with the jacks or wiring.
Since there was static prior to the outage, I suspect moisture in a jack/outlet.
If the trouble is moisture-caused, it will likely be in a jack/outlet on an exterior, below grade wall. Using a flashlight, look DIRECTLY into each outlet. The connectors should be clean, shiny brass. Look at the modular connector/plug of each device as you UNPLUG it. Its connector should also be clean, shiny brass. Moisture damage will cause the connectors to look black/green/cruddy. If you find such a compromised jack, replacing it should restore the dial tone. It would then behoove you to find and correct the cause of the moisture. Good luck!
--
:)
JR

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On 3 Sep 2006 16:44:12 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

No, you don't know that.
Unless maybe you did the testing when the house was unplugged at the NID and all the phones and phone-like devices were disconnected.
Normally I find that a good test procedure is more impportant than actually thinking (I'm serious) but one can't ignore thinking entirely. The fact that your phones don't work means either one phone (or more, but not likely unless there was a lightening storm or some other surge) doesn't work or the wiring has a problem** I don't know what kind of tester they sold you but I don't think it could be good enough to absolutely exclude wiring problems, especially if phones or the NID are connected.
**"shot" makes it sound like it is all bad and has to be replaced. In fact 99%+ is good and there is one problem somewhere, if the problem is the wirss.

The fact that you expect a dial-tone implies to me that all your phone and phone-like devices are not disconnected, and that your NID is not disconnected.

Haven't read it all, but I'm sure the other posters gave good advice.
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[piggybacking]
mm wrote:
[snip]

When I read this just now, my first thought was 'check the DSL filter'. It splits the DSL off from the telephone signals.
|--------| telco to NID ------| |------ signal to DSL modem (outside line) ------| DSL |------ | filter | | |------ signal to phones | |------ |--------|
My guess is a screw-down or crimp connection has come loose at the filter. The filter itself might be blown, but that's rare.
There are a number of different kinds used by telcos, so I can't tell you exactly what to look for. :(
RD
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On 3 Sep 2006 16:44:12 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

One more thing: You really should have done this test that you did before calling the phone company. Then, either you could have saved the phone company a trip, or you would have been prepared with more, better questions when he came. Since you weren't convinced that he tested correctly, I'm thinking your questions were more about that than what's going on in the house.
Of course that's what this group is here for, so you really didn't lose anything.
Although I did learn from my phone repairmen a couple things I didn't learn here. 1) If I want a filter to keep the AM radio station off my line, it might be free from the phone company, but they charge a half hour labor to come out and install it. I forget what that is but at least 50 dollars. The phone man said to buy one at Radio Shack.
2) After rhe guy replacing a fence post near the adjoining townhouse cut my phone line, I wondered if I need call the phone company to repair it, or if the job I did was good enough. Following the advice here and my girlfriend's, I called them and the guy who came out said that he couldn't do it, the undergound guy would do it (even though the wire was sticking 4 inches out of the ground>) and it would be free, but that the other guy would do like him adn use crimp connectors (with jelly inside) and standard electric tape. I had soldered the connections and used shrink tape.
While I guess the phone company's methods must be "good enough", my methods are certainly better. The thick shrink tape is 7 dollars a roll, mail order only afaict, but it gradually becomes one lump of rubber and doesn't unwind with age for lack of stickiness. (I recently bought a roll of shrink tape at a local hardware store or a hamfest or someplace, but I haven't tried it yet. It wasn't expensive and probably isn't thick or as good. But it's still probalby better than standard electrical tape, for permanent installation, especially outside.)

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You should have called the telco. It's their wire.

So he left you out of service? Sheesh! :(

Totally bogus - or a small, independent telco with lazy technicians free of any oversight.
All buried splices must be ENCAPSULATED - the ENTIRE splice. Just taping-up the splice and reburying it won't last. The moisture in the ground will deteriorate the plastic insulation until the conductors connect with the ground and produce noise.
There is a popular acronym in the phone industry: ETIR.
Every Time It Rains.
--
:)
JR

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On Mon, 04 Sep 2006 20:28:29 -0500, Jim Redelfs

Maybe he was wrong about what the other guy would do.

Verizon.
Maybe the non-underground guy who came out first was wrong. But this part of the connection was not going to be buried.

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