Installing a new doorbell is a task that can often be managed with a minimum of effort. By collecting a few simple tools and taking a few basic precautions, it is possible to install a new unit in a matter of minutes, even if you are not particularly mechanically inclined.
Your first step with the project is to assemble your tools and materials. In general, you will need wire strippers and cutters, along with a good pair of pliers and a screwdriver. While it is not necessarily essential, it is a good idea to also have a circuit tester on hand. A stepladder may also be required. Last, you will need to purchase a doorbell kit containing the new unit and all the applicable hardware needed for the installation.
Once your tools and materials are assembled, locate the breaker box and shut off the power supply. While a front doorbell normally does not use a great deal of current, it is still sufficient to give quite a jolt. With no worries about getting shocked, you will also move forward with the job at a quicker and more confident pace.
Make sure you know where the chimes are located in your home. They may be placed over the door itself or in a nearby area, such as a closet, adjacent to the entryway or front hall. Assuming the chimes are in good condition, there will be no need to replace them, but it is still a good idea to locate them in the event you have to make any adjustments. If this is a first time installation, select a place to install the chimes.
Next, remove the old doorbell and any related hardware. Unless the wiring is damaged in some manner, it can be used with the new bell and chimes. Inspect it carefully before proceeding to the next step.
Following the instructions that come in your doorbell kit. This often involves connecting the wiring to the doorbell button. You will likely need to cut and strip the ends slightly to attach the existing wiring to the new unit. Use the pliers to bend the wiring into position and then use the screwdriver to secure the wires to the workings on the back of the new unit. Finally, attach the new doorbell to the frame of the door.
Should you need to also replace the chimes, there is every chance you can also use the existing wiring at the opposite end. Use your tools to detach the old chimes, then connect the new chimes, taking care to make sure the electrical connections are secure. Reposition the chimes and screw them into place.
With the unit fully installed, test your work. Flip the power back on at the breaker box and press the new doorbell. If the chimes sound properly, your task is complete. If not, shut off the power and re-inspect your work. Chance are the problem is nothing more than a loose connection and you will have the new equipment functioning properly in no time.
In most cases, this simple process can be used for any type of home doorbell installation, including a front and back doorbell. However, if you should run into any obstacles that are beyond your ability to handle, do not hesitate to stop the project immediately and call in a professional electrician.