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Will A Ring Doorbell Work With An Existing Chime?

A Ring Doorbell is a fantastic smart home device that does a lot more than a standard doorbell. It’s a security camera and doorbell built into one device that’ll notify you by WiFi whenever someone approaches the door. And it comes with a 2 way speaker built in so you can talk to, and see, the person from just about anywhere. Whether you’ve just moved into a new home or apartment, a Ring Doorbell can help secure your home and property. Best of all, a wired Ring Doorbell will work with your existing chime if the chime is AC-powered and yields between 8 and 24 volts. They’re also compatible with other Ring devices like Ring Chime.

How Do you make a new Ring Doorbell use the existing chime? It’s simple, if the Ring Doorbell system is connected to the old doorbell’s existing wires, then it can work with the existing chime. It’s also possible to turn off the doorbell chime so that it doesn’t make noise. But you’ll still be notified by WiFi. Your new Ring Doorbell will activate the chime just like your old doorbell did.

Some old chimes are compatible with a Ring Doorbell and some are not. A wired Ring Doorbell will work with your old chime if the chime is AC-powered and yields between 8 and 24 volts. If your chime is DC-powered, it won’t be compatible with your Ring Doorbell.

How do you know if your existing chime is AC or DC-powered? In this article you’ll learn more about setting up a new Ring Doorbell and how to determine if it will work with your existing chime.

Can A Ring Doorbell Work With An Old Chime?

A Ring Doorbell can work with an existing chime if it’s wired and AC powered, not DC powered. The ring is hard wired to your home’s wiring grid which is what connects it to the chime. If the Ring is wireless it won’t work with your old chime because it’s not connected to it.

The power you need for a Ring Doorbell is AC and between 8 and 24 volts. This is considered a low voltage wire.

Most doorbells that work with a chime are AC-powered. However, if you’re unsure about whether or not yours is AC or DC powered, here are a few ways you can tell:

Power Description What To Look For
AC-Powered Doorbells AC, or alternating current, means that power moves back and forth inside the line. It changes its flow to match how much energy a device needs. Almost every home in the United States run on AC power. Wires don’t have a zinc coating and come from inside the walls.
DC-Powered Doorbells DC means that power comes from a battery which directly supplies energy to a device. If you have a smartphone plugged into a power bank, it’s a DC charge. A steady flow of energy comes from the batteries into your device. Wires generally have a zinc coating and run to a battery

Tips For Finding Out If Your Ring Doorbell Can Work With An Existing Chime

The best way to tell if your existing doorbell chime uses AC or DC power is with a volt meter. You can buy a cheap one for around $25. Just make sure it has a feature that can identify AC vs DC power. The volt meter will tell you if the power source is AC or DC power.

Another way to tell is by inspecting the wires. If the wires run to and from a single battery, and not from the wall, it’s probably DC powered. However, if there are wires coming from inside the wall to the chime, it’s most likely AC power.

In most homes, AC power comes from the grid while DC power comes from batteries. But don’t be fooled when you open the chime and find a battery. Some chimes have a battery backup in case the power goes out. In this case you’ll see wires connecting to the battery and wires coming from the wall.

Will A Ring Doorbell Work In An Old House?

As long as your old chime is powered by an AC current of between 8 and 24 volts, a Ring Doorbell will work fine. The age of the house doesn’t matter at all, just what type of power it has.

The issue with really old homes it that they’re not always up to modern electricity code. As long as the house is wired to code, has AC power and the volts are right, you shouldn’t have any problem installing a new Ring Doorbell. But I have a lot of experience remodeling older homes and I can tell you that the electric is one of the most common things that needs updating.

If you’re trying to connect a Ring Doorbell in an old house, I recommend calling an electrician. They’ll have all the diagnostic tool you need to check the power type and output. But if you want to try it yourself, buy a good quality multi-meter. Make sure you buy one that’s capable of detecting AC and DC power and voltage levels.

How To Connect A Ring Doorbell To Your Old Chime

Once you’ve figured out if your existing doorbell chime will work with a new Ring Doorbell it’s time to install it. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to do.

If your old doorbell work on AC, here’s how to connect your new Ring Doorbell to an existing chime:

  1. First you should charge the Ring Doorbell if it has battery backup.
  2. Then turn off the power supply to your old doorbell. For safety reasons this is a very important step.
  3. Next, remove your old doorbell so that you can see the exposed wires.
  4. Mark where you want the mounting bracket installed. I recommend using a tiny level to keep the Ring square.
  5. Screw the mounting bracket into the wall.
  6. Wrap your doorbell’s wires around the raised terminal screws.
  7. Tighten the screws to hold the wires in place.
  8. Secure the wires to the mounting bracket.
  9. Finally, secure your Ring Doorbell to the mounting bracket.

Luckily you don’t have to be an electrician to install your Ring Doorbell to your home’s existing doorbell wiring. Doorbell wires are low voltage and fairly easy to work with. But if you don’t feel confident you can do it yourself, call an electrician.

I strongly recommend turning the power off before working with any type of electrical wiring. Even though doorbell wiring is low voltage, it can still hurt you.

Read and follow the directions that come with the Ring before doing any installations. They make multiple models and some may have additional installations requirements. These instructions are general and may need to be adjusted based on the Ring Doorbell model you buy.

1. Charge The Ring Doorbell

Start by charging the Ring Doorbell if it has battery backup. Do this by connecting the micro USB cable it comes with to the back of the doorbell and a power source. This which will cause a blue LED light to appear on the front of the doorbell.

2. Turn Off The Power

Make sure the power is turned off to the existing doorbell before you do anything. This is done by flipping the fuse off in the electrical panel. Even though doorbells run on low voltage power, it can still be dangerous.

3. Remove The Existing Doorbell

Remove the existing doorbell which will expose the wiring. Generally there are just two small screws connecting a doorbell to the wall.

4. Mark The Wall

Mark the area where you plan on installing the ring. I recommend using a small level to make sure the mounting bracket is square. Generally I mount my doorbells 48 inches or so above the ground. You can measure to the top, bottom or middle of the mounting bracket.

5. Install The Mounting Bracket

A Ring Doorbell doesn’t actually connect directly to the wall, it connects to a mounting bracket. The bracket is what secures the Ring to the wall. That’s why it gets installed first. Take your time, it’s very important to install the bracket level. If the mounting bracket is installed correctly, the Ring will sit perfectly.

The mounting bracket is secured to the wall with screws. I recommend using a screw gun with some drill bits so you can pre-drill the hole.

6. Wiring

Take the existing wires coming out of the wall and thread them through the Ring’s base plate. Then attach the wires to the two screws that are in the base plate. Tighten the screws down to hold the wires firmly.

7. Attach The Base Plate

Secure the base plate to the door frame with the screws provided. I recommend using a screw gun for this too.

Now that the new Ring Doorbell is connected to the old wiring, it’s also connected to the existing chime. Whenever you push the Ring button your chime will sound. The wiring will also make sure the battery stays charged in case of a power outage.

8. Ring App

Download the Ring app and create an account. Log in to your account to setup your Ring and adjusting its settings. This is an easy process that includes step by step instructions.

Adjust the WiFi and Video Settings. Press the button on your Ring Doorbell to check its video quality.

Ring Chime

What if you don’t want to re-use your doorbell’s existing chime or your existing chime isn’t compatible with a Ring?

Ring has a great solution for both of these situations and it’s found in their device called Ring Chime.

Ring Chime is a wireless notification device that can connect to all of your Ring devices. It’s very simple to use, simply plug it into a power outlet and connect to it through the Ring app. When the Ring doorbell button is pressed, the Ring Chime will make a sound.

Ring also makes a Ring Chime Pro that also as a WiFi booster in your home for all your Ring devices.

The Ring Chime and Ring Chime Pro uses a predetermined tone to when someone presses the button on your Ring Doorbell device. It is just a speaker and won’t allow you to speak through it. To do that, you need a smartphone or similar device.

Ring Chime Settings

You can adjust the settings for a Ring Chime by using the Ring app.Here are a few of its options:

  • Change the doorbell tone by selecting a chime inside the app. Click “Chime Tones” and pick the one you like from the list.
  • Adjust the volume.

Once you select a tone, the Chime will flash to indicate that it’s downloading. When the light becomes solid blue color, this means the download is complete and you can start using the new tone.

Chime is a great device because it allows you to easily change the volume and doorbell tone with just a few clicks. It’s also convenient because the Chime will go off even when you don’t have our phone with you.

Ring Chime Pro

A Ring Chime Pro acts as an extension of your Ring Doorbell, allowing you to:

  • Extend your Wi-Fi signal 2,000 square feet.
  • Hear real-time notifications when someone rings the doorbell.
  • Allows you to select from a variety of different tones.
  • Offers adjustable volume via the app.
  • Shareable by multiple devises.
  • Comes with a nightlight.

You’re not limited to using your home’s old wiring and chime if you can’t get it to work. Ring has great options designed to meet every homeowner’s needs.

Ring FAQ

Here’s a breakdown of the most common questions we’re asked about Ring Doorbell’s and their installation.

Does the Ring Doorbell ring inside the house?

If the Ring Doorbell is connected to your home’s existing wiring and chime, then it will ring inside the house just like it did with your old doorbell. Otherwise, it will only ring to your phone or Ring Chime device.

Can you connect a Ring Doorbell to multiple devices?

Yes, a Ring Doorbell can be shared by multiple users across multiple devices. You can find the option to share it within the Ring app. Multiple devices can also be logged into a single Ring account so that more than one person can access all of its features.

Does a Ring Doorbell require power?

A Ring doorbell can either be hard wired into a home or powered by a rechargeable battery. Most Ring Doorbell batteries will last between six months to a year before they need recharging. If a Ring is hard wired, the battery will remain charged in case of a power outage.

Will a Ring Doorbell work with my existing chime?

When in doubt, hire an electrician or smart home device company. They’ll be able to tell you for sure if the Ring Doorbell your interested in will work with your existing chime. There are dozens of chimes on the market and multiple Ring models so some testing will be required. If it doesn’t end up working, I recommend buying a Ring Chime Pro. They’re a great device.

Do I need tools for installation?

Generally the only tools you need to install a new Ring Doorbell is a screwdriver or screw gun and some bits. You’ll need the screwdriver to both remove the old doorbells and secure the new unit’s mounting plate.

I also like to bring some drill bits. Drilling pilot holes first makes the screws go in easier and prevents wood trim from splitting.

A small level and tape measure are also a good idea. Use the level to check the mounting plate and the tape measure to set your height. I typically install my doorbells about 48 inches above the ground.

Everything you need for installation comes inside the box.

Do I need a Ring Chime?

The Ring Chime or Ring Chime Pro are a chime that’s designed by Ring to work with a Ring doorbell. It’s not essential, but it makes a traditional doorbell chime so you’re not dependent on smartphone alerts.

If you don’t use the Ring Chime with your new doorbell, you can use the old chime instead. As long as it’s compatible with your new ring. You could also use smartphone alerts.

Keep in mind that without a Ring Chime or an existing chime, when you press the Ring Doorbell’s button it won;t make a noise inside the house. All that will happen is that you’ll get a smartphone alert.

Summary: Will A Ring Doorbell Work With An Existing Chime?

A Ring Doorbell is a fantastic smart home device that does a lot more than a standard doorbell. It’s a security camera and doorbell built into one device that’ll notify you by WiFi whenever someone approaches the door. And it comes with a 2 way speaker built in so you can talk to, and see, the person from just about anywhere. Whether you’ve just moved into a new home or apartment, a Ring Doorbell can help secure your home and property. Best of all, a wired Ring Doorbell will work with your existing chime if the chime is AC-powered and yields between eight and 24 volts. They’re also compatible with other Ring devices.

How Do you make a new Ring Doorbell use the existing chime? It’s simple, if the Ring Doorbell system is connected to the old doorbell’s existing wires, then it can work with the existing chime. It’s also possible to turn off the doorbell chime so that it doesn’t make noise. But you’ll still be notified by WiFi. Your new Ring Doorbell will activate the chime just like your old doorbell did.

Some old chimes are compatible with a Ring Doorbell and some are not. A wired Ring Doorbell will work with your old chime if the chime is AC-powered and yields between eight and 24 volts. If your chime is DC-powered, it won’t be compatible with your Ring Doorbell.

If you have any questions or comments about Ring Doorbells or other Smart Home devises, email any time.

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