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Fax Machine vs. Answering Machine

I only have one phone line. When a fax comes in, how can I keep the answering machine from picking up instead of letting the fax come in?

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If you are there unplug the phone line from the answering machine. -Carl

Posted on Jul 24, 2009

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My Lexmark Interpret S405 fax?copy machine picks up incoming call from cell phone as fax. it goes onto fax automatically after 2 rings..


It seems that you're sharing your home phone line with your Lexmark fax machine. You can adjust the "pick-up" ring from the printer operator panel by pressing the Setup button > Fax Setup > Ringing and Answering > Pick Up On > select your preferred number of rings before the fax answers.
Please note:
If you have an answering machine connected to the same line as the fax, set the answering machine to answer incoming calls before the printer does. Increase the number of rings by a factor of 3 over the answering machine. For example, if the answering machine is set to pick up on 4 rings, set the printer to pick up on 7 rings.

If you have a voicemail feature in the same line as the fax, you may subscribe from your phone service provider for a distinctive ring pattern feature. You can program your printer to have a distinctive ring pattern and phone number for incoming faxes.

Should you still need assistance, please leave a comment to my response and I'll get back to you. Should this resolves your problem, your rating will be greatly appreciated.

Nov 08, 2011 | Lexmark Interpret S405 Wireless All-in-One...

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I have the fax connected to the phone line with a splitter which is also connected to my portable phone and answering machine. when the phone rings it goes to answering machine if not answered and then to...


The fax machine should have two places on the back where you can plug in a phone cord. One of these is the input: where the cord from the wall goes, and should have either "in" or a picture of a wall phone outlet next to it. The other is used as a line through the fax machine and should have a picture of a phone or "out" next to it. Ideally, you would plug the fax machine directly into the wall and then your phone/answering machine into the "out" plug on your fax machine.

When in auto mode, the fax machine will listen in on the line when the phone rings and if it detects a fax signal (all the whirring and beeping) it will pick up the phone and receive. If there is no signal, it will simply allow the signal to pass through to the phone and answering machine.

Jun 02, 2011 | HP 1010 Plain Paper Inkjet Fax

1 Answer

When i install canon all in one , i just can fax to someone , but i can't receive from someone , thanks lot


If you have an answering machine on the same phone line you need to use the answering machine menu to set the phone to answer at 4 rings and the fax to answer at 6 rings.Another thing that will work is a phone line just for the fax.Sometimes a fax modem card inside your tower or a usb fax modem is needed.I think in your case the machine is picking up phone ring first instead of the fax signal which is different.

May 03, 2011 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

My answering machine (phone line) is picking up when I dial my fax number. How do I set my fax machine up so that it will pick up when I dial the fax number?


Either your fax machine is set to answer on more rings then your answering machine is or you dont have the automatic answer key pushed?

Determine how many rings your answering machine picks up on and then change the number of rings to a lower amount on your fax machine. To change the number of rings before picking up the line, press the "menu" key on the fax machine and use the up and down arrows to scroll until you find the "basic fax set up" or the "advanced set up" areas. I am not sure which one will have the number of rings setting. Try looking in both until you find it.

when you see it press "ok" or "enter" get in and change the amount of rings before answering. call your fax machine to make sure it picks up before your answering machine.

This should solve your problem.

Mar 21, 2011 | Office Equipment & Supplies

2 Answers

IT WILL RING BUT GOES TO ANSWERING MACHINE DOES NOT RECEIVE FAX


>first run fax test, press set up go to tools menu then select run fax test,all entries should be pass
>then check your connections, do you have one line or number for your fax and phone?or a separate line or another number for fax and another number for phone?
>let me assume you only have one number for fax and phone..
>check connections, this should be downstream connection, the fax machine using the black phone cord provided by hp should be connected directly to the phone jack using line 1 at the back of the fax and the answering machine or the telephone should be connected to ext 2 or line 2 at the back of the fax...there should be no other devices phone or answering machine connected directly to the phone jack.
>next set rings to answer on the fax machine higher than the answering machine...if your rings to answer on answering machine is 4 rings, set the fax to 6 rings...if it is a voice call the answering machine will pick it up at 4 rings then if it detects that it it a fax tone then it will transfer the call to fax.
>also check if auto answer is on in your fax
>you can check auto answer and rings to answer by pressing set up or menu button on your machine look for it in basic fax settings or advance settings
>also check if your voice prompt for your answering machine is not too short there should be like at least 5 seconds after cutting your message to allow the machine to transfer the call to the fax if it is a fax tone.

Sep 14, 2009 | HP 1040 Plain Paper Inkjet Fax

1 Answer

Need to set up phone/fax instead of just fax


I have a HP Officejet J6480 All-In-One and needed the answering machine and fax to be on at the same time.  I called the help line at HP and they said I needed another phone line into the home but I tried this and it worked. 
First I got a different phone number for the fax machine - they do this for no charge at my phone company. This is not another physical line into the home - it is just another phone number with a different ring - it rings 2 fast rings for the fax machine instead of the phones regular one ring. I set the answering machine built into the phone to pick up after 4 rings and I set the fax machine to pick up on 2 rings. Be sure to set it so the fax pick up number of rings are less than the answering machine pick up number of rings.  It worked for me. Hope this works for you too.

Apr 24, 2009 | Brother MFC-260C All-In-One InkJet Printer

1 Answer

Incoming faxes not received, all else works.


Hi there,

It is your phone answering machine that must pick up in three rings or less.

Therefore 4 is too much. I would not limit number for fax machine itself.

On receipt of fax sometimes seems like it will not work when answering machine picks up in the middle. However, leave it and it will work. Sometimes sender will hear your answering machine and cancel as well. So try to ensure they don't give up at other end as well.

Good Luck!

Feb 26, 2009 | HP OfficeJet 6110 All-In-One InkJet...

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Canon imageCLASS® MF4150 All-In-One picks up all calls on our second line.


I got in touch with the manufacturer tech support and found there was no way around it. Thanks for considering my issue though :)

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1 Answer

I have a discontinued phone and have lost the instruction book and need to figure out why the fax machine is not letting the answering machine pick up.


you have both the fax machine and the answering machine on the same phone line.
The fax machine and the answering machine are set to answer in a certain number of rings.
In your case the fax machine is set to answer the line in less rings than the answering machine. You have to increase the number of rings of your fax so that the answering machine will work.

Aug 06, 2008 | Lands Phones

1 Answer

Hooking up a fax machine on home telephone line


Well... the problem is that you are running two machines on one line. ONE of them has to take predominance. Both machines should have settings for "number of rings to answer at". It sounds like you currently have the fax set to less than the answering machine, so the fax picks up after two rings, while your answering machine might be set to more, which it never gets to, because the fax answered the call already(It doesn't matter if you answer the phone, or the fax picks up, once the line is open, the answering machine is taken out of the equation). Even if you set the answering machine to answer first, you're then taking the fax service out of the loop. I'm not sure how you're going to juggle that, since both types of machines each need control over the line to work properly. That's why we (business machine folk) always recommend a dedicated line for fax service.

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