When the telephone line goes dead many people panic and call their service provider straight away but this could turn out to be an expensive mistake. Some faults can be caused by equipment and extensions within the home that are not covered by the service provider.
Most houses in the UK use a master socket known as an NTE5 which has a detachable front plate that can be removed by taking out 2 short screws. By removing this front plate, assuming the house has been wired to standard, you will be disconnecting all internal telephone extensions. The remaining part of the master socket or NTE5 now has a test socket in the bottom right hand corner to be used to test the incoming line.
Are You Getting A Dialling Tone?
The next step is to take a telephone that you know is working, preferably one that does not require mains electricity, and plug it into the test socket and listen for a dialling tone. If there is no dialling tone at this test socket then the fault is very likely to be in the external network and all work to repair the fault can be carried out by the service provider free of charge.
If there is a dialling tone at the test socket and the tone disappears when the front plate is reinstated then there is a fault on the internal wiring or equipment. The next step is to unplug from telephone sockets any equipment/modems/telephones in the house. If there is still no dialling tone then there must be a fault on the internal wiring within the house.
Telephone Engineer Callout:
To repair this sort of fault, the best way forward is to get a trained telephone engineer to the property. This can be done through your service provider but will be expensive with any work on the internal wiring starting around A�200. Another option is to contact a reputable engineer in the local press or via the Internet, preferably an ex BT engineer who can offer the skills required for a lot less cost.
Many people are still under the premise that only BT Telephone Engineers are allowed to work on internal/external telephone faults and will only call them out. Though this is true about the external (any telephone wires outside of the property), it is not true of the wires within the home.
It would be wise to keep in mind that there are a lot of Ex BT Engineers that work for themselves and calling them out is actually over 50% cheaper than BT themselves and the work is carried out to the same standards.