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RobinL2
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How can I add an extension?

Hello,

My mother has just had Virgin set up in her new house.  She is elderly and does not use a mobile, so we selected the option to have an emergency line installed which works when the mains power is off.  This was all installed and tested by the technician before she moved in.

When she moved in we installed her phones.  She has a set of 3 wireless phones she uses routinely, and an old simple phone she uses when there is a power cut.  

On my first attempt I used a BT socket doubler to connect the 2 phones, as we used to do in the old house.  I put this in the adaptor on the back of the hub.  Nothing worked this way.  I did notice there are 2 phone sockets on the hub, so I got a second adaptor and plugged one phone into each socket.  However only the phone in socket 1 works.  (Both phones work if I switch them over, but neither will work if plugged into socket 2.)

Is there a way to get both phones working.  Normally she wants the wireless phones working as they have the extensions in useful places instead of by the hub.  This is no good if there is a power cut though.  As things stand, if there is a power cut, she will have to fiddle around in the back of the hub to unplug one phone and plug in the backup, to be able to call for help.  Surely there has to be a better way.

Thanks for any suggestions.

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Akua_A
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Hi @RobinL2

 

Welcome to our community forums and thank you for your first post.

 

Sorry to hear you are experiencing this when trying to connect both phones. We can understand your concern and we want to do our best to help. I have sent you a private message regarding this. Please look out for the purple envelope and provide a response when you can.

 

Thanks, 

Akua_A
Forum Team



New around here? To find out more about the Community check out our Getting Started guide


goslow
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Re: How can I add an extension?


@RobinL2 wrote:

Hello,

<snip>

On my first attempt I used a BT socket doubler to connect the 2 phones, as we used to do in the old house.  I put this in the adaptor on the back of the hub.  Nothing worked this way.  I did notice there are 2 phone sockets on the hub, so I got a second adaptor and plugged one phone into each socket.  However only the phone in socket 1 works.  (Both phones work if I switch them over, but neither will work if plugged into socket 2.)

<snip>

Thanks for any suggestions.


It is only the 'TEL1' socket which works on the back of the hub. The second socket is used if required for a second line.

From what you have described, it sounds as if you are making the connections correctly with the doubler.

Are you able to try the 'doubler' in another line (via a friend, family, neighbour) to check that is does actually 'double' with two phones connected to it. Often these phone accessories are not great quality. You might have a faulty doubler.

Check that your doubler isn't actually a 'privacy adapter' these usually have little display lights on them and they are used to allow two extensions to share one line but they grant exclusive use of one connection at a time for privacy of calls on the shared line.

RobinL2
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Hello all,

Apologies for the delayin following this up, but I wanted to be sure I had tried everything suggested and I had limited chances to test things in my mother's house.  It's not fixed yet, but here is where I have got to.

I tested the doubler in our house.  We have the same phones and Virgin home phone service, although it is the older version on a separate cable not supplied through the hub.  The doubler worked perfectly with the old stand alone handset, wireless base station and all extensions performing as they should.  It is definitely not one of the "privacy" devise descried with the extra button.

I then went back and tried it again at my mothers.  The standalone handset seems to work OK in the doubler.  However the DECT wireless phones were not consistent.  Sometimes I could make and receive calls on them, sometimes they were just dead.  I also got "check line cord" error message intermittently on the handset.  Overall they worked probably less than 20% of the time.  As a result I have had to go back to the set up we had with just the DECT phones connected.  The emergency phone is by the side of the hub and could be plugged in, but I don't think my mother has enough dexterity to do this during a power cut.

If this was an old BT landline I would say we had too high a REN plugged into the system, but effectively this is only two phones.  Shouldn't the Virgin landline be able to support that?

Thanks for any other suggestions or ideas you may have.

Robin

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goslow
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Do the DECT cordless phones work 100% of the time when they alone are plugged into the hub?

Sounds like you have a specific issue with the particular combination of equipment/adapters when all linked together to the phone connection on the VM hub. A past topic has suggested two phone devices at a time may be connected to the hub

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Home-Phone/Correct-wiring-for-multiple-extensions-on-VOIP-setup...

If you are wanting phone access specifically from a corded handset during a powercut though, your proposal may not work entirely as planned.

If the power cut is in your mother's house, AIUI the hub will be off and no phone calls will be possible (either corded or wireless). The emergency backup line from VM should be available but will only allow calls to 999.

If the power cut is in the wider area outside of your mother's house then the phone might work depending on what parts of the VM infrastructure are affected.

If you are wanting to set up an arrangement whereby your mother can still make calls normally (from a corded handset) when the power is out in her house, then you probably need a device which monitors the landline connection and has the ability to automatically flip over to a mobile SIM connection if the landline is down (but still using a corded handset).

Something like this kind of thing

https://www.burnsidetelecom.com/assets/pdf/DataSheet_T400LR_UK.pdf

You would need to do your own research for what specific make/model you need, depending on your circumstances. Also looks like setup and config for the above type of thing may need some programming to make sure it behaves exactly as you want when the power goes out. Photos online of the VM EBUL unit appear to be from the same manufacturer.

 

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RobinL2
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Goslow,

Yes the wireless phones are working fine when they are the only phone plugged in to the hub.  It only becomes a problem when we add the wired handset.  As you say the other thread implies this should work, so I'm not sure what the problem is.  The wireless phone has the BT callminder software built in, so maybe that is confusing things.  It did work on Virgin in her old house, but that was the old type of landline.

The Burnside unit sounds very similar to the way the Emergency line unit provided by Virgin works, as described to me by the technician.  He said it contains re-chargeable batteries, so it works during a power cut, and a Vodafone SIM card, so you can make calls.  He did suggest that might change to an O2 SIM in future, now the merger is approved.  He did not mention any limitation on who you could phone using the line.  I might switch the hub off and test it when I get a chance.

With reference to the Doro phone or similar also suggested, we have tried to get her to use "simple mobiles" but have had no success.  She doesn't seem to get the idea they need charging so they are always flat and dead when she goes to use them.  She then abandons them as broken!

Thanks for your help so far.

Robin

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BenMcr
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Re: How can I add an extension?

I think it's this unit that's provided as part of the emergency option for Virgin Media today

https://www.burnsidetelecom.com/assets/pdf/TX2_series_User_Guide_Rev_2_3.pdf

The idea of the backup until is that is it permanently connected to the back of the Hub and then your home phones plug into that.

So if you are trying to get both the DECT and wired handsets working then your doubler needs to go in the back of the backup unit, not the Hub.

When the Hub loses power, then the backup unit will detect that and route 999 calls from the wired handset over the built in SIM. Whether the DECT handsets do that depends on their power supply.

**********************************
I work for Virgin Media - but all opinions posted here are my own
RobinL2
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Hi Ben,

I can confirm that does look like the unit we have been provided.  I was using the doubler on the adapter from the hub.  I'll try moving it to the emergency unit and see if that works.

Thanks,

Robin

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goslow
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Re: How can I add an extension?


@BenMcr wrote:

I think it's this unit that's provided as part of the emergency option for Virgin Media today

EDIT: Not that one as it's GSM only.

The idea of the backup until is that is it permanently connected to the back of the Hub and then your home phones plug into that.

So if you are trying to get both the DECT and wired handsets working then your doubler needs to go in the back of the backup unit, not the Hub.

When the Hub loses power, then the backup unit will detect that and route 999 calls from the wired handset over the built in SIM. Whether the DECT handsets do that depends on their power supply.


Can the OP put in his own SIM card to the backup unit and then call other numbers beyond 999? Or is the VM EBUL unit locked in some other way beyond the base restrictions of the VM SIM?

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Robert_P
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Re: How can I add an extension?

Hi goslow

 

The SIM can be changed but it would then be the user's responsibility to ensure all of allowances etc are there for the SIM to work. If anything was to go wrong with that SIM it would be at the user's discretion this is being used and we may not support the problem.

 

If the original SIM is left in then we can fully support and resolve the any issues that may arise. 

 

Rob