My wife and I have lived in our house for three years. During that period the doorbell has never worked. We have two dogs and live in a cul de sac, if anybody approached the yard then it was bound to wake up at least one dog. Some time in suburbia and father time have crept up on the dogs and people get to the front door now. However, now there’s a newborn in the house and sleep for everybody is a priority; we needed a doorbell that’s not as jarring as two big dogs barking.
The previous owner said that the doorbell worked just fine, but that he had disconnected the battery. I peeled off the doorbell cover and found the wire to the battery had been cut and that all of the wires had been disconnected.
I’m not familiar with anything electrical. I’ve done it before, but even switching out an outlet or light fixture is a big deal for me. After a quick search online I found some directions on how to do it. Not trusting these directions I went to our local home improvement store to get their opinion.
“Yeah, your battery wire is cut; just splice that together and you’ll be fine”, the home improvement helper said. I get nervous working around electricity. Even while asking about how to fix this I had forgotten to ask where the wires are connected. Bugger that, I can figure it out, I thought to myself.Doorbell scheme
I get back home, turn off the power, splice the wires together, ask my dad about where the wires should be plugged into and give it a try. Dads are never wrong are they? Unfortunately nothing happened. I tried the wires plugged into a different combination and when they didn’t work I gave up. With a toddler, newborn, wife and dirty house I didn’t have time to play Russian Roulette with this dinger of a doorbell.
We still needed a doorbell though, so I went back to the store to get one of those wussy cordless doorbells. While I was there I looked at the packaging for the manly wired doorbells and saw a key piece of information.Doorbell diagram
The photo is crude, but it reminded me that the electricity has to go in a circular motion. I knew that wasn’t happening, so I purchased some wire, a cordless doorbell in case I failed and headed home.
- There are two wires coming from the doorbell button, connect one to the transformer and the other to the chime.
- Use another wire to connect the transformer to the chime.
It was that easy. Our particular chime threw me a Jedi mind-trick because there were multiple wires that were poorly spliced. The big wires confused me and I made a 10 minute project into a two day task.
Here is eHow’s version of replacing a doorbell chime.
As a stay at home dad I miss having the spare time to fix things. Even though the child is my full time job, things still break or need a fix in the house. Sometimes the repair will be something that I can easily complete and other times it’s a repair that I simply should’ve paid to have it done. Regardless, I’ll write it up here in hopes that you may be able to gauge what you can do and when you need to call in for help. The series is called, DIY a Stay at Home Dad Can Do, but in some cases, you shouldn’t, because of difficulty, time involved or money. All dads aren’t equal. In this case the task is very easy and you can do with little effort.