Wired Doorbell Transformers, Doorbell Wire, & Batteries

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Wired doorbell transformers are electrical devices that step down the high-voltage electricity in your home to a lower voltage compatible with wired door chimes, wired doorbell push buttons, and most recently video doorbell such as ring.com and chime.

The power USA homes is 120V, while a wired door bell requires 16V. Supplying that much voltage to your wired doorbell system would quickly burn out your lighted push button and break the chime. Therefore, you must have a wired transformer in your home to “transform” the electricity from 120V to 16V (most wired doorbell require 12V-16-V).

The small table below shows the differently wired transformers we carry at 1800doorbell.com.  There are a variety of factors to consider when choosing a doorbell transformer and the chart below is a basic simplification for choosing the right one. If you have a basic wired doorbell that plays a standard “ding-dong” sound, we recommend the 16V, 10VA transformer, the DH905, or the T1610. Using too much voltage is to recommended and will break your doorbell.

Choosing the Right VA for Your Wired Doorbell Transformer

In most situations, the Volt-Amps (VA) is what is most important. Most wired doorbell systems that use a 1-2 lighted push buttons and 1 door chime box (that play the ding-dong sound) are going to use a 10VA transformer. Unlike volts, oversizing VA won’t get you into trouble as the door bell box will only pull what it needs.

Where the trouble typically arises is when the transformer cannot supply enough VA for what is requested and this often leads to a humming sound or over-heating of the transformer.

With the popularity of video doorbell camera systems like ring.com, chime, and others, they require more amps than a traditional door chime. In most cases, assuming you are using the right gauge wire and the run isn’t overly long, a 10VA transformer should be okay. Problems typically happen when using a video camera door bell with wired chime. In that case we recommend the DH910, the tri-volt or 3TRAN doorbell transformer.

Although we do not offer the largest selection, we have the necessary bases covered when installing or replacing your wired chime. We are often asked questions about using a wired doorbell in conjunction with a Ring.com or Hello Nest video doorbell.  We suggest you visit their support pages, but we do offer this tidbit. 

Video doorbells tend to use more amperage than a standard wired door chime.   Coupling the video doorbell with your wired chime requires even more amperage and most doorbell transformers don’t have enough power.  We would recommend the DH910 for these purposes.

ModelVoltageVA(Watts)Notes
DH90516V10VAIdeal for up to one doorbell, chime, buzzer, or bell.
DH9108V-16V-24V10VA and 20VATri-voltage transformer, ideal for up to two chimes.
T161016V10VAIdeal for one chime w/ bell wire run less than 50 feet.
T163016V30VAIdeal for multi-chimes

How to Wire Doorbell Transformers

Single Push Button to One Wired Doorbell

For a single doorbell installation, use one push button. One wire from the push button connects to the front door screw on the doorbell. The second wire from the push button is wired to the doorbell transformer.

Connect a wire from the terminal, common, or transformer screw to the doorbell transformer. Connect another wire from the transformer to the second wire from the doorbell push button.

single push button doorbell install with standard doorbell transformer

Two Push Buttons to One Wired Doorbell

For two push buttons with one wired doorbell, the setup is essentially the same with this difference. One wire from the second push button (back door for example), will connect to the rear terminal screw on the doorbell box chime. A second wire from the second push button will connect to the wire from the first push button that leads into the transformer.

Two push buttons wired to one doorbell with a standard 16V 10VA doorbell transformer

Wiring a Tri-Volt or 3TRAN Wired Doorbell Transformer

a tri-volt doorbell transformer allows you to use a different voltage and VA options. If connecting two wired doorbell chimes OR connecting your Video Doorbell in conjunction with your wired doorbell, this is a great transformer to choose.