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-   -   Converting a wired to a wireless doorbell (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/converting-wired-wireless-doorbell-159757/)

ohman 10-11-2012 01:46 PM

Converting a wired to a wireless doorbell
 
Hi all, thanks for reading this thread.

Here is our situation. Our old doorbell button (wired) is no longer functioning, and due to the last painter did a poor job, so I think it's very difficult to remove the existing doorbell button. Here is a picture:

http://s18.postimage.org/na5o3nc9h/20121007_140553.jpg

Because of this, also we are not sure whether the wires between the button and the wired doorbell is still OK, so we are thinking of converting it to a wireless doorbell solution. Here are two photos of the existing wired doorbell:

[housing]
http://s10.postimage.org/w3vbqyp45/20121009_185555.jpg

[inside]
http://s9.postimage.org/g22646wrv/20121009_185616.jpg
My questions:

1. Is it possible to use the existing electrical source of the wired doorbell for a wireless doorbell (the plug-in one, not the battery-operated type)? I'm thinking that if the new wireless doorbell is small enough, maybe I can hide it under the current housing (need to remove the original wired doorbell mechanism first for sure)... Thoughts or comments about this? What should I be careful or pay attention about (e.g. should I be worried about the 20VAC transformer vs 16VAC, how much current the wired/wireless doorbell use, etc.)?? For old wired doorbells, can they be easily replaced with a wireless doorbell unit??

2. Another idea is (if the current wired doorbell still work, just the wired button that is bad), can I replace the wired doorbell button with a wireless button, but keep the original wired doorbell intact but somehow have the wireless button drive the original wired doorbell?? Is this possible?

Thanks again!
Tip: to see a larger picture of each, please click on each picture...

jbfan 10-11-2012 02:15 PM

Wireless doorbells are just that, wireless.
The button will contain a battery, and the receiver unit plugs into the wall.

flasherz 10-11-2012 03:02 PM

I have a "wireless" doorbell that uses the existing button and transformer. You connect the transformer and button series to the wireless trigger, then plug the doorbell receiver into the outlet.

I think you still need to troubleshoot a bit more. Do you hear a "hum" or a "buzz" from the wired unit when someone pushes the button? That will give you a signal the button still works but the electromagnet is dirty/broken/etc.

ionized 10-11-2012 03:09 PM

If you are good with a soldering iron:

http://www.hackersbench.com/Projects...dong/main.html

Oso954 10-11-2012 03:35 PM

Usually there are two screws (yours maybe three) to remove the plate and button.

Pull it out a couple of inches and then use a screwdriver or short piece of wire to jump between the two wires or screws that hold the wires. If it rings, the button/switch is shot.

You can usually by a new one and pull the switch/button off of the plate and install it in your uniquely shaped plate.

ohman 10-11-2012 03:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flasherz (Post 1028948)
I think you still need to troubleshoot a bit more. Do you hear a "hum" or a "buzz" from the wired unit when someone pushes the button? That will give you a signal the button still works but the electromagnet is dirty/broken/etc.

The problem is that the existing wired doorbell button is completely dead and stuck.. you can't press it down at all so no way to troubleshoot it for now...

ionized 10-12-2012 07:08 PM

The solution here is simple. You have to carefully pull off the old button assembly clean it up and reinstall it or install a new one. Repaint the wall near the button and let it dry before reinstalling the button. That process will be a lot easier than fabbing up a unique solution to a common problem.

ohman 10-12-2012 07:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ionized (Post 1029599)
The solution here is simple. You have to carefully pull off the old button assembly clean it up and reinstall it or install a new one. Repaint the wall near the button and let it dry before reinstalling the button. That process will be a lot easier than fabbing up a unique solution to a common problem.

Yes that's exactly what I did. I think now I need to find two metal tubes for the chime or just replace the original doorbell unit...any tip where I might be able to find that kind of vintage doorbell chime (metal tubes)?? I tried ebay and google'ing around with no luck...

ionized 10-12-2012 07:55 PM

Your tubes are missing? Good luck with that!

Solenoid-driven chimes are available. Search ""doorbell chime" "two-tone" -wireless" This one is not very decorative: Broan NuTone Wired Door Bell Mounted Door Chime KIT - BK115LWH White.

On ebay right now: Nutone Jewel door bell chime w/ transformer VINTAGE

ohman 10-13-2012 12:53 AM

Thanks for everyone's help. I really appreciate that. :smile:

Let me first show you a photo of what's inside of that doorbell unit:
http://s11.postimage.org/eqfzfcxvz/20121011_153838.jpg

As you can see, it's missing those two metal tubes (chimes?), which I guess should be hanging on the two sides. As it's quite old, originally I was thinking to replace it with another wired doorbell (IQAmerica Wired Doorbell DW-2860). However, I think it's a bit too contemporary, and I'm not confident enough to just replace it. Here are some quick questions:

1. In this picture I can NOT see any transformer. Can I assume that the transformer is hidden somewhere in the house and the electricity on those two wires (shown in the picture) is 16VA or 20VA?? I don't have a meter with me so I can't do a test.

2. All I know is that I was able to replace the doorbell button (wired) and now the solenoids will be moving back and forth. So I still think that the easiest way is to just find the chimes (tubes) and put it back. Can anyone identify what model this doorbell is and what are the chances to really find a workable chimes that can fit with my existing setting and just... put them back?

Thanks again!

Andrew Shen 10-22-2012 03:03 AM

Ohman, usually the solution for wireless doorbell and wired doorbell is different, so they can not convert each other.

it is easy to solve to use wireless doorbell for your question, you can buy one from ebay.

gregzoll 10-22-2012 08:43 AM

Just replace the inside unit & outside button. It takes longer to post on forums and wait for answers, while refusing the answers, than it does doing the work. Hour tops if you take your time doing it for the replacement parts.

ionized 10-22-2012 11:20 AM

Yup, the transformer is often in the basement. Your's seems to be working though so finding it is not urgent. You should find it attached to an electrical junction box. Check your main panel first. If it is not there, start near the door bell or button and work from there.

I think that you will have a real problem finding chimes for your bell. Consider hooking up something inexpensive until you can find an entire bell that suits your house. It is not difficult for someone that can fix a button.


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