Troubleshooting Home Phone for Call Dropouts

This article will explain what to do if your Home Phone (landline) keeps dropping out or disconnecting while you're on a call.

Please see these alternate guides if you have a Netphone or Fibre Phone (VoIP) service.

Select one of the links below to jump to a query:

  • You can successfully make or receive a call, but the call disconnects while you’re still speaking.
Potential cause
Try this:
Severe line noise If you hear crackling, buzzing, popping or other noise on the line when you make a call, please troubleshoot Line Noise instead.
Poor signal or issue with the other caller’s phone service If you only experience dropouts when you call a specific number, it may be their phone service that has an issue, not yours. You can check this by making some test calls to different phone numbers.
Insufficient power supply to phone handsets Check that both phone handsets didn’t have low or empty batteries when the call dropped, especially mobile or cordless handsets.
Central splitter required If you have more than three telephony devices or a Back to Base Alarm system, you may need to contact an ACMA-approved electrician to install a central splitter.


  1. Unplug all devices from every phone socket, including your modem, telephones, fax machines, pay TV boxes and EFTPOS terminals.
  2. Plug a standard phone handset directly into the phone socket (without a filter), and then make a call. The test call should last for as long as it normally takes before a dropout occurs. If the dropouts don’t usually occur on every call, you may want to make several test calls.
  3. If you were able to make a call (or calls) without dropouts, skip to the advice below.
  4. If you have more than one phone socket in your home, plug your phone handset (without a filter) into each of those sockets and make a test call. If you experience dropouts when your phone is plugged into one socket but not another, there may be a problem with your home’s internal wiring.
  5. Using a different phone handset, repeat steps 2 to 4. If you experience dropouts when using the original handset but not a different handset, then the original handset may be faulty.
  6. If the call dropouts stop, please see the advice below.
    If you experience call dropouts while using both handsets, please use an alternate phone service call us on 13 22 58 for further assistance. If you have no access to a working phone service, please email Please note that in the event we need to submit a fault for call dropouts, we'll need the date, time and number dialed of at least 3 calls.


  1. If you don’t experience dropouts any more, plug your handset into the phone socket with a filter and make some more test calls. If your calls drop out again, that filter may be faulty.
  2. Plug your other devices back in one at a time and make a test call after each new device is plugged in. Always start with any devices that require a filter.
  3. If your calls suddenly start dropping out again, then the device you’ve just plugged in may be faulty or interfering with your phone service, or it may be plugged in with a faulty filter.
  4. We recommend replacing a filter or device if it is faulty, or adding a filter to a telephony device if it didn’t already have one.


Phone problems can be caused by several things, but a common cause is faulty hardware.

If iiNet lodges a fault for a phone line when there is no fault, then you may be charged an Incorrect Call-out Fee by our wholesaler’s fault technician. To reduce the risk of this, we need to rule out as many other possible causes for your phone problem as we can.

If you experience dropouts when using the original handset but not a different handset, then the original handset may be faulty.


If your phone works when it's plugged into one wall socket but not another, you may have internal wiring issues. If you suspect this is the case, please contact an ACMA-licensed electrician. This means that they are properly licensed to work on communications cables.