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I have a doorbell chime that seems to be too low and dull to be heard with the chime cover on the unit. I have tested the transformer and it is putting out 18 V at the transformer, chime wire side. Testing the chime wiring at the wall chime, the voltage drops to 13 V, which operates the electromagnet but puts out a dull thud, which is barely audible with unit cover on. Already replaced the button at the door. Wiring looks to be in good condition. Only thing I can come up with is the unit electromagnet mechanism is deficient. Unit plungers and unit itself clean of debris. Any Suggestions or ideas appreciated.

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    tap the bell bar with something like a wooden spoon ... does it ring clearly?
    – jsotola
    Jan 7 at 17:11
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    Make sure the grommets in the tone bars are in good shape. They can become worn and keep the bars from emitting the desired sounds.
    – JACK
    Jan 7 at 17:12
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    Maybe there is lint or dust on the hammer. Metal on metal should never sound dull. Jan 7 at 17:25
  • Kinda leaning towards the grommet issue. The tone bar itself kind of emits a dull tone. Will check the grommets and further clean the hammer.
    – JJM
    Jan 7 at 18:09
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To ensure there's no problem with the wiring to the button or the button itself, try powering the bell directly. The wiring now should have one transformer wire connected directly to the bell and the other transformer wire going off to the button. Take that second transformer wire and touch it to the second terminal on the bell; the bell should ring.

Not only will this help to rule out the possibility of a problem in half of the circuit, it will also give you an opportunity to see the bell in action and observe whether it might have a problem.

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  • I tested the bell via the second wire. Didn't ring at all.
    – JJM
    Jan 7 at 18:07
  • @JJM- I see where your going with this, but wouldn't it be a better testing of the chime to attach a jumper wire to each transformer terminal and connect those to the chime?
    – ojait
    Jan 7 at 20:41

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