Fax keeps saying line busy/no answer

I tried to send a fax and I got a “line busy/no answer” message. I tried again every fifteen minutes for an hour and it didn’t change. What’s going wrong?

There are really two possibilities here. Either your recipient has been furiously sending and receiving faxes for hours on end, or there’s a problem with someone’s fax line. It’s probably the latter.

Start by figuring out if the fault is with your fax machine. An easy way to do that is to try to send a test fax to another fax number that you know works. If it goes through, the problem isn’t with you. If it doesn’t go through, check to make sure that the telephone line is plugged into the correct jack and that your fax machine has a dial tone.

If the problem is on the other end, first verify that you have the correct fax number for the recipient. If you have another way of contacting them, get in touch with the recipient and ask if their fax machine is working. If it is, have them confirm that the fax machine is not currently in use, and then resend your fax.

Do you have a question about faxing? Send me your fax question.