What do I do if my phone has no dial tone?

When your phone has no Dial Tone, before you call for help, try the following troubleshooting tips:

  • Make sure no other extensions, in the home or off premise, are off the hook.
  • Sometimes, especially after a power outage or power surge, a piece of your equipment may seize your line. That may “busy up” some, or all equipment, connected to a phone jack and the power it’s hooked up to. When this happens, you won’t have Dial Tone on your phone. You can often times fix the problem if you follow these few instructions:
    • Unplug all equipment from phone jacks in the home and any off premise jacks.If a piece of the equipment you unplugged from a jack is also plugged into power, disconnect from the power source as well as from the jack. Remember to include the modem and any other computers, DSL, Satellite dish, etc.
    • Once everything is unplugged, plug one phone back into a jack. If you have an old corded phone, try that one. If not, you will have to plug in the base for the cordless phone and try one of those.
    • Check to see if there is dial tone. You should hear a clear, strong dial tone when you test each jack. If you don’t, make a note of location of the jack and what you heard when you tested there. If there is dial tone, you can plug the other devices in, one at a time, and make sure the dial tone is still good after each device is plugged back in.
  • Test with a phone at the NID (box on the side of the home that contains your phone service wiring; see help file for NID).
    • If you have Dial Tone at the NID, there is a problem inside the home.
    • If there is no Dial Tone at the NID, there is an issue with the phone line coming up to the home.
  • If you don’t have a corded phone, you can still test at the NID if you have a nearby power source. Simply plug your cordless phone base into power and then connect the cord you normally plug into the phone jack inside your house, into the jack in the NID.