Before I screw something up, I just want to verify that I’ve identified the right thing. I’m putting in a new transformer for my doorbell as my Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus is no longer charging correctly and the existing stuff is old. Here’s what I have: Transformer

Not transformer

This first thing is mounted on the side of my circuit breaker panel. I’m pretty sure that’s the transformer. The second thing is the chime (still going strong since December of 1959!). It is my assumption that the thing in the first picture must be swapped out, and nothing in the second picture needs to be modified. Am I correct?

  • It's also possible that the red and white wire are (semi-) shorting at the door bel. Straighten them out. And while you're at it, clean out the dust, and follow the service instructions. Maybe it's just that easy.
    – P2000
    Sep 10, 2021 at 15:24
  • @P2000 At the doorbell, yes. But the chime "is still going strong". Sep 10, 2021 at 15:49
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    @MikeWaters yes I like your answer, which is why I only commented. OP should still straighten out those wires. And I'm not sure what is meant with "Ring is no longer charging". Is there also a "Ring" video doorbell somewhere? If so, where is it wired? Is OP keeping the old chime with the Ring?
    – P2000
    Sep 10, 2021 at 15:55
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    Aside - if you do remove this vintage doorbell, do not dispose of it. These kind of things go well on ebay/etc and if you don't want to do that, give it to someone who will.
    – Criggie
    Sep 11, 2021 at 1:41
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    @Criggie Good to know, though I think if I were to remove it, I’d probably clean it up and put it into a glass display case. It is a beaut’ and a relic!
    – bubbleking
    Sep 11, 2021 at 1:43

1 Answer 1


The first item is definitely a transformer. We can tell that by its core laminations and its appearance.

And it is almost certain that the transformer is a doorbell transformer. (It might be a furnace transformer.)

Can you measure the AC voltage on both the 120 volt primary (to see if it's getting power)? If so, measure the AC voltage at the low-voltage secondary, the two screws where the two wires are attached. You should see a voltage a little less than 30 volts.

The second item is a doorbell.

The fact that the chime still works tells me that the doorbell transformer is fine. You should still measure the transformer voltage to be sure.

How do you know for certain that your Ring is connected to it?

  • Mike, do you perhaps know why not to oil the striker, but naphta is ok?
    – P2000
    Sep 10, 2021 at 15:21
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    Note that the transformer could be a furnace transformer. Usually these are attached to the furnace, but not always.
    – Hot Licks
    Sep 10, 2021 at 15:27
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    @P2000 The viscosity of oil inhibits the movement of the strikers, and it might not make any sound. Naphtha, etc. is a solvent, cleaning off any contaminants that prevent their free movement. Sep 10, 2021 at 15:40
  • @HotLicks Thank you, edited my answer to include that possibility. Sep 10, 2021 at 15:55
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    I tested the 2 screws on that transformer. I got about 14v which I think is a little less than what the Ring needs. I am not sure how to access the 120v side of that thing. I suppose I need to open the panel, just as I would of replacing it?
    – bubbleking
    Sep 10, 2021 at 16:38

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