How Much Does It Cost To Repair A Telephone System?

Typical Range:

$91 - $212

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 419 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Updated February 8, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Office phone systems offer businesses enhanced efficiency and productivity, regardless of the size of their staff or budgets. Unfortunately, these business-boosting phone systems need repair work from time to time, which usually requires the assistance of a trained professional.

On average, home and business owners can expect to pay about $145 to repair their telephone systems. However, this number varies depending on the type of system. For example, a VoIP system can cost approximately $75 per phone to repair, while a PBX system can be $100 per extension. Other factors that have a direct bearing on repair costs are parts, labor, and the nature of the problem itself.

Many phone system manufacturers offer a warranty on parts for a specific amount of time after installation. For example, if a power supply, cable, or handset does not function properly, you may be able to contact the manufacturer to cover the cost of the repair or replacement. Before approving any repair work, carefully examine your warranty to verify the terms and conditions, as you may be able to avoid out-of-pocket costs.

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National Average $151
Typical Range $91 - $212
Low End - High End $50 - $400

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 419 HomeAdvisor members.

Common Telephone System Issues

Identifying the root cause of the problem can help determine how much of your budget should be set aside for repair expenses. While various issues can be associated with phone systems, especially with those with high-tech software and devices, a few common problems are more prevalent. The number of extensions, type of phone system, and location of the problem (software, hardware, or wiring) all directly impact the repair costs involved.

System Type

Average Repair Cost Range

VoIP

$10 – $250

PBX

$10 – $500

KSU

$100 – $500

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VoIP Repairs

VoIP phone systems rely on the Internet to make and receive calls, instead of utilizing the landlines required for traditional office phone systems. This gives any organization the ability to access advanced features, such as automated receptionists and call queues, without investing in a top-of-the-line system, which is ideal for growing startups, small businesses, and home offices.

Employees even have the opportunity to accept business calls via their mobile devices. The downside to VoIP systems is that these are Internet-based, which means that connectivity is required. If the Internet goes out, the organization or homeowner cannot make or receive calls. 

VOIP Common Repair Costs

Here are a few of the most common repairs associated with VoIP systems:

Internet Connection With No Dial Tone 

If the office still has Internet connectivity, but the phone is not picking up a dial tone, this typically indicates a problem with the phone unit itself. To test the connection, simply disconnect the splitters or devices attached to the cable line and connect the phone to the IAD directly. If this does not solve the problem, try switching out the cords or replacing the entire phone, which can cost up to $250. If plugging the phone directly into the IAD does correct the issue, it may simply be a faulty splitter or cable, both of which are usually under $10 to replace.

Echo During Calls

If you can hear your own voice echoing during a phone call, this is a sign that a splitter may be malfunctioning or causing an issue with impedance. The first step is to lower the volume of the phone to minimize feedback and remove any splitters or caller ID units that may be at fault. If this remedies the issue, replace the splitter with a new unit or switch out the caller ID device and test for feedback. The cost of a caller ID unit varies greatly, depending on its features and the phone system itself.

Static Interference

A few different issues can cause static interference, including insufficient power supply and faulty wiring. Other devices connected to the line can also cause static, such as alarm systems or caller ID units. Make sure that you’ve fully charged the phone’s battery and that you’ve installed the right one. The manufacturer’s manual will typically specify which battery is best for the phone handset. Replace the phone’s power supply if the battery is not the root cause, or replace the wiring. A power supply can cost as little as $20, while faulty wiring may cost roughly $100 per line.

Dropped Incoming Calls

If calls are not being routed to the telephone or are going straight to voicemail, this may indicate a lack of Internet connectivity, insufficient power, or router failure. Contact your Internet service provider to ensure that everything is working on its end, and then try switching out the power supply. If the router is to blame, it may be time for a replacement unit, which can cost around $250 per phone system if the router is internal.

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PBX Repairs

PBX, or private branch exchange, systems are ideally suited for mid- to large-sized companies with more than 40 employees. They operate much like a VoIP system, save for the fact that you own all of the equipment and host the system on-site. PBX phone systems typically offer a wide range of features, including fax machine integration and phone extensions. The most significant con of a PBX system is the upfront cost, as you do need to pay out of pocket for the hardware in advance.

Repair Costs

Lack of Dial Tone

There are three common reasons for a lack of dial tone in a PBX phone system. The first is a faulty power supply, which typically costs $20 to replace. The solution may also be as simple as switching out the phone cable, which is usually $10 online or at local electronics stores. Lastly, a malfunctioning router could prevent the phone from making or receiving calls. If this is the case, replacing the router in a phone system can cost an average of $250.

Busy Signals

A busy signal may seem like a basic problem, but it can cost your organization a great deal of business if customers and clients cannot get through. Busy signals often link to the internal wiring or the system’s central unit. After testing the connection and unplugging all splitters and secondary devices, the next step is replace the systems wiring. The average cost of switching out faulty telephone system wiring is $100 per connection. If this does not solve the problem, you may have to replace the entire central unit, which comes at a higher cost. Generally, central PBX units can cost up to $500, depending on the features they offer and the vendor.

Choppy Reception

Lack of power supply, faulty wiring, and other devices connected to the line are typically the causes of choppy reception or static interference during calls. Fully charge the handset battery and ensure that it provides a sufficient charge for the unit. If the phone calls are still choppy, try replacing the power supply, which typically costs $20, or replace the wiring. Depending on the type of phone system, wiring replacement can cost up to $100 per line.

KSU Repairs

KSUs, or key system units, are often best for smaller businesses with less than 40 employees. They are less costly to install and operate; however, they do not typically offer as many features as PBX and VoIP systems. The central control unit is the heart of the KSU, which supports multiple different phone lines. Staff members can make office calls internally and quickly view which lines are busy via the light-up panel on the device.

Repair Costs

Inability to Dial In or Out

If you cannot make or receive calls, you may have an issue with the wiring or the phone system itself. Before replacing the entire system, try replacing the power supply and cables to see if this fixes the issue. If the problem persists, carefully examine the wiring to verify if there are any frays or malfunctioning components that may be hindering the phone's functionality. This can cost an average of $100 per connection. If all other options fail to remedy the problem, a new phone system may be necessary, which can cost around $250.

  • Digital functions not working properly: If the digital functions of your key system unit are not functioning properly, try testing the connections, cables, and wiring before moving on to the central unit. If the central unit is behind the problem, replacing it can cost an average of $500.

Additional Cost Factors

Other factors must be considered when repairing phone systems, regardless of the type of system currently in use by the organization. The nature of the problem and complexity of the system directly impact how high these costs will be.

Diagnostics

 A professional telephone repair technician must usually spend time diagnosing the problem before replacing any faulty parts. In some cases, they will check the entire system and each individual phone to determine the primary issue. For more complicated issues, they might verify that all of the functions at each workstation are performing normally. This can involve a significant amount of time, particularly if there are many phone systems on the premises or the issue is not obvious. Even if you have an on-site technician specializing in communications systems, you will still have to devote payroll hours to the diagnostic process.

Labor

Once the repair technician has identified the problem, they’ll get to work fixing the issue. If the central unit is causing the problem and is located in a hard-to-reach area, such as an attic or small space, the repair service may charge extra labor. Again, if your on-site repair specialist is conducting the repairs, you will still be required to pay them for their time and effort. To cut costs, consider conducting the repair work yourself, especially if it is a simple fix, such as replacing a splitter or cable. This will save on labor fees and allow you to make the repairs immediately, rather than having to schedule an appointment with a repair service.

Special Order Parts

In some cases, the part you need may no longer be available and may require a special order directly from the manufacturer. These parts typically come with a higher price tag and shipping and handling costs. Try to look online for second-hand parts for a fraction of the cost of new parts, or visit local repair shops to see if they are willing to part with leftover parts for a small fee.

Upgrading Outdated Systems

If you are currently working with an older phone system that is discontinued, it may be necessary to update your entire system in the event of a malfunction. Faulty splitters or cables are easy fixes, but a more complicated issue may require a sizable investment. For example, if the central unit no longer makes or receives calls and the manufacturer no longer offers replacement units or parts, investing in an upgraded PBX, VoIP, or KSU phone system may be necessary.

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