I'm an IT tech, today I Was called out to a customer with "broadband issues", that wasn't the half of it...
She lives in a listed building which was probably built in the 50s if not before, it's old to put it that way. All the wiring of every type in the house is old, degraded and in a pretty dangerous condition, bits have been patched up or added to over the years, but in general most wiring in the house needs to be replaced.
She has recently signed up for BT Total Broadband, around a month ago, and has been unable to get it going. So I went out and had a look, connections were all fine (even the filters in the correct places on extensions, I don't see that often!). She advised me that the main socket (or so she thought) was in her kitchen. So I took the faceplate off and had a look at the wiring, it was very old, the type where the wires are individual colours like red/yellow/black etc, not the more modern striped ones. As I had never looked at phone wiring this old before, I gave it my best shot looking at pictures from google images to try and get it right. I managed to solve the crackling on the phone line so there's one positive thing to come out of it all.
The router seems to not pick up any ADSL signal on the line, at all. I believe the socket is wired incorrectly as there is 50 volts from the phone line coming into the RJ11 cable into the router which I assume should not be happening (it doesn't put line voltage through the router at my house anyway), and I also believe that the socket she thinks is the main one, is not the actual main socket. The one in the kitchen has (had) 4 cables coming out of it, one was the feed coming in, one goes to an extension in the living room, one to an outbuilding (which was cut and hanging in the rain) and I am unsure of where the 4th one went, I couldn't trace it anyway. The socket in her bedroom had 5 cables coming out of it, I assume, that one is the main feed into the house, one to another outbuilding, one to the kitchen socket, and again there were two that I had no idea where they went to.
These phone wires I assume are as they were when they were installed all those years ago. The sockets are the very old type, similar to this
. Are BT obliged to sort out this mess as she pays the line rental to them? What exactly does the line rental cover? She has tried numerous times to contact their helpdesk but all she gets are the usual canned responses and "we've done a line test, there are no problems with your line" but there obviously are. At the moment she is paying for a broadband service that she is unable to use, at all. I've read that BT are responsible for the line coming into the house but not the extensions, if her broadband service is not able to be used at all, would she be entitled to a free repair to get it up and running or would they still expect her to pay for them to come out and sort out the line when they say there's "nothing wrong with it"?