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We're updating your Emergency Backup Line

Dialled in

My elderly mum (80+) had Virgin Media install fibre phone last September, the setup didn't work for her so she had to get them to re-do it (at her cost!), now she has received a letter (01/03/2023) stating that as part of ongoing improvements for over 35,000 customers, we need to replace your Emergency Backup Line. It's important to do ASAP. 


No explanation in the letter and she wasnt able to book a time and date. They are booking upto 8 weeks in advance. 

Her emergency backup line lets her call me (as well as 999 and 112) when the WiFi is down. Why do they need to change it?


Forum Team
Forum Team

Thanks for your post on our Community Forums @Pete-StAlbans, and welcome back!

Sorry for any inconvenience or frustration caused when your Mother had to switch over to the router based phone system.

The swapping of the emergency back up lines (EBUL) is part of an ongoing programme to improve our services for vulnerable customers, and to also future-proof our mobile network. 

It allows Virgin Media to introduce the ability for EBUL device users to be able to make calls to friends, as well as family members, on top of the emergency services, should they need help if their fibre phone line stops working.

Kindest regards,


Don't understand, as she can already make calls when the hub is switched off to family and friends using the emergency phone line. Why would she need to upgrade again, when this was last installed in Sept 2022?

Forum Team (Retired)
Forum Team (Retired)

Hi @Pete-StAlbans ,

Thank you for your reply I am sorry to hear this, I would love to take a look into this for you. I will need some details so will pop you over a PM, keep an eye out for the little envelope 📩



Are you able to help please. After ignoring the letters she has now been pushed into agreeing an upgrade over the phone. The Emergency Line is to be upgraded, but she couldn't explain to me what's being upgraded, maybe it's the router. She is unaware of what "upgrade" means. She had no explanation as to what this would allow her to do once changed, no explanation as to what the upgrade meant. Just that she had to stay in between 10-4pm for the engineer to upgrade her system.

Hey @Pete-StAlbans,

Welcome back to the Community Forums and thanks for the post.

Sorry to hear that this has happened, the upgrade will be to replace the current Emergency Back up line with a newer model, the technician that is presently booked in will be able to assist with explaining the new features that come with this but the primary functions will remain the same. 

You will be able to track the appointment via the website here.

Cheers. Joe

On our wavelength

Thank you to the team for the explanation. I had an EBUL V1 which was replaced with a V3; a few weeks later the same engineer replaced the V3 and the only difference I could see is the description of the SIM card. I could have replaced the SIM card without the cost of a new unit. I trust that the unit removed will be re-used with a EBUL SIM rather than the a new unit being installed in every case. Not to re-use is both environmentally unfriendly and adds a cost to VM's service provision and also higher bills.

One thing I am thankful for is that my complaint that I would not be able to call a relative, or an undertaker, in a router/hub out scenario seems to have been heard. Thanks again team and complaints manager.

Thanks for your post @the_hidden_one.

We do ensure that equipment is reused after we confirm that this is suitable for future use by a new customer/user.

If you have any further questions or concerns, do feel free to come back to us.

Kindest regards,