Dad hates newly installed Rogers home phone service because it only has one jack. Suggestions?
My elderly (and very tech-challenged) father has just moved into a senior's home. I set him up with Rogers cable TV and home phone service. For the phone, they installed a modem with a jack for the phone. The problem is, the modem is right next to where the cable enters his unit, which isn't where he wants a phone. The other problem is that he's very annoyed that he only has one working jack (the modem one). Think of an old-fashioned guy who uses old-fashioned phones that need to plug into a jack. There are a few jacks within the unit, but they are Bell jacks, and the Rogers guy said they can't be used for Rogers (which makes sense to me). I've searched for a solution to this, here and elsewhere, but no joy. He's so annoyed that I'm contemplating cancelling and just signing up with Bell, which I'm sure will cost, plus the hassle factor. Any suggestions?
Edit: I did give him a 25 ft. phone cord, which we've now strung from the modem, all over his living room (yeesh), but that still only leaves him with one working phone. Oh yeah, and he's adamant that he wants phone service in the event of a power failure (partly why he uses the old fashioned non-electricity phones), but I think he might have a stroke if I mention that the modem requires electricity with a backup battery that will work for a few hours, but not indefinitely. I may have chosen the wrong service...
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You have several options.
1. Check with the seniors home to see how things are wired, but in most homes it's possible to utilize the Bell phone jacks if the modem is placed at the distribution point where the jack wires come together. For example, most people who have switched from Bell have lots of existing jacks throughout their homes. These come together at a distribution panel where the Rogers modem should be installed and wired to that distribution panel. That's how it works at my house and many other houses, although it could be different in a seniors home since the distribution point may be outside your fathers "room(s)".
2. If that's not possible at the senior's home, may I suggest you get a cordless phone with the number of handsets required for the number of rooms he has. I don't see why he shouldn't be able to use a cordless instead of a corded phone - just get one with big buttons or other features that he likes - perhaps with adjustable volume good for seniors who are hard of hearing, etc. My 98-year old father can use one. A long cord is also a safety (tripping hazard) issue. Put the base for the cordless phones at the Rogers modem and place any other cordless phones (with their electrical plug-ins) wherever you want. If he only needs one base/phone, problem solved. He just needs to put the phone in the base once in a while to get charged.
Edit - You can always add a UPS to plug the modem into. That would probably give him several days of power since the modem requires little power (and as you say already works for several hours) in the event of a power failure. There's also always someone around who has a cell phone if necessary - he's at a seniors home after all!
Thanks so much. He's got a cordless phone set that he knows how to use, but insists that he wants a least one "corded" phone plugged in at all times (doesn't want to switch the phones out at the modem when he wants to use the corded one). There really isn't much logic to this - I think he's just frustrated because he sees all the phone jacks in the place (every room) and figures he should be able to use them. No one in the family has ever used Rogers for home phone before, so I didn't know the setup. As soon as I saw it I knew there was going to be trouble. I was hoping for some way to get another working jack in the place, but it doesn't sound like that's an option. (Bell demarc is outside of the suite.) Thanks for the answers, looks I might have to switch to Bell, he's just not happy with the setup, not Rogers fault. At least the cable TV seems to be working out.
Edit: Just saw the UPS comments, yes that makes sense, but I was actually hoping to avoid that whole topic (he hasn't yet figured out that the modem requires power, I think I'd like to keep it that way). First time setting up a household by himself, so not a lot of logic going on, more fear and a need for the familiar I think. Thanks again though.
If all he wants is the corded phone somewhere, get a splitter for the phone lines. Plug it into the modem jack and then you can plug two lines into the splitter - one for the corded phone and one for the cordless base.
If you do decide on using a UPS for the cordless base/modem remember to plug the modem and the cordless base into the battery protected side of the UPS (and nothing else). You can plug whatever you want into the "surge only" side. You can usually get a small UPS for $30-50 on sale.
Wonderful - didn't know such splitters existed - thanks! Also good to know about the UPS - more thanks!
Hi there. Is like to offer some suggestions.
Bell does not own the jacks any provider can use them even Rogers but if another providers service is LIVE on the jacks that must be disconnected before the new provider can use them. If the bell jacks are dead and have no dialtone and no battery on the jacks then you should be able to use them theoretically. If bell did some weird system where all the jacks are Disconnected and the only way to connect them requires access to a locked telecom room you might be screwed but maybe a tech can get it working a lot of techs say stuff like "it can't be used cus its Bell" only because they are too lazy to do the extra work cus they operate on Peace Work but usually it can work.
You can even hire a non bell or non Rogers telecom guy to do it for you.
And lastly they sell splitters as well they sell a combo cordless and corded phone in one unit so if the hydro goes out the corded handset will still work.
Thanks for the suggestions! According to the installer, the Bell jacks can't be used (from what I understand, it has to do with the where the Bell demarc point is, in the building). I too wonder about that, and want to make sure that's true, or if he just didn't want to bother.
You've given me an idea though - I think I'll put up a notice for the other residents, asking if any of them have Rogers home phone, and if so, to contact me. Like my Dad, lots of the seniors there aren't comfortable with "new" technology, so I'll see what kind of setup they have with Rogers.
The splitter idea might solve one of the issues too.
You have a number of great suggestions, the biggest challenge is keeping your father comfortable with the changes, which even as a 60 year old, I can attest that I have my challenges with the pace of change, even though I am very knowledgeable.
I think this was mentioned, but most likely, the access to the location of the demarcation point is probably controlled by whomever is in charge of maintenance in the building.
If it is like most buildings with multiple units and phone connections to individual users, it is probably in a room somewhere, behind a locked door, or in a sealed box on the wall. They will most likely have a contract with a technical company or service. It is unusual to see a building giving access to the room to each company providing services to the building.
So one point of clarity is to confirm access to that room to make sure that the lines in the unit are not connected to Bell lines, power supplies, etc.
If they will allow access by Rogers to the room, any experienced Rogers phone tech is more than capable of completing the setup.
That answer will determine your next steps. But definitely the splitter option is an easy one - can be picked up at any dollar store, electronics store like The Source, etc.
Good luck and hope your father gets comfortable with his new surroundings and patterns of life in his new home soon.
According to the installer, the Bell jacks can't be used (from what I understand, it has to do with the where the Bell demarc point is, in the building). I too wonder about that, and want to make sure that's true, or if he just didn't want to bother.
Hi Again Romaness,
Myself having previous work experience in a similar role, I can surely tell you Anything is possible with telecom, You can surely use your existing bell jack with the Rogers home phone service, it all depends on how willing the tech is able to go and do it for you. Some techs simply refuse and they are well within their right to do so, it maybe a request you "WANT" but by them refusing to do it for you, its not within the scope of their work so complaining to his manager will not get you anywhere, trust me. Some techs actually go the extra mile and take good care of their customers and do anything, even stuff considered out of scope for them, because they want to show the company has good people who they can trust and people will be happy and continue to use the services.
If you really need the bell jacks switched to Rogers just let us know maybe I can reach out to a friend of mine who still works as a cable tech but he is independent.
You had a lazy tech or one who did not know very much.Many techs do not know how to change the wire in each box so you can have two lines working,one for phone and one for internet.