How A Wireless Doorbell Works – Your Guide

Have you ever wanted to know how a wireless doorbell works?

This article will explain what happens when you press the button on the receiver (push button), how it gets to the chime, and what happens afterward.

How A Wireless Doorbell Works

Wireless doorbells, a wireless mouse/keyboard most wireless electronic things work in a very similar way.

It is just a simple case of buying a product, putting the batteries in, connecting it up, and leaving it to do its job for most people.

Me, though, I prefer to know how things work. In this case, a wireless doorbell. When you learn how something works, you can learn how to troubleshoot and fix any issues that you may have.

What is a Wireless Doorbell – The Basics

Let’s begin with a brief overview of the items you should expect to receive within a wireless doorbell kit.

Transmitter (1 or more)

Commonly known as a push button, the transmitter is usually placed outside your front door and is the button that a visitor pushes.

Receiver (1 or more)

The receiver is also known as a ‘doorbell chime,’ the noisy item! The receiver is usually plugged into an electrical wall socket, but it can also be battery-powered if you need a portable wireless doorbell option.


You will probably need a battery for the transmitter and some batteries for the receiver (depending on which model you have opted to purchase).

Look at some of the most common battery types for wireless doorbells.


You will either receive screws and anchors, adhesive tape, or both.

User Manual

This item speaks for itself! You will need the user manual to understand how to operate your wireless doorbell.

You can find the Hz frequency details within the user manual.

What happens when you press the transmitter

What happens when the transmitter is pressed

Electrical energy travels through the antenna inside the transmitter when the button is pressed on your wireless doorbell transmitter. This is the wireless doorbell antenna, and as the signal is pushed through that wire, electromagnetic waves from around that antenna are sent out into the airspace.

The waves generated can travel a distance dictated by the strength of that energy. For example, a wireless doorbell capable of a longer range will have a more powerful push button. Knowing if you have a large house or cover a wider area is essential.

The wireless signal sent from the transmitter (push button) occupies a specific spectrum of frequency, which is the rate at which the signal vibrates.

Take a radio station as an example: FM radio operates at a very high signal, vibrating around 100 million times per second. The radio station will have a high-powered transmitter, and your radio unit is the receiver.

You can hear what the radio station is transmitting as you tune into that signal.

A wireless doorbell is similar, although the transmission is sent at a different frequency, 433Mhz.

At 433 Mhz, the signal vibrates 433 Million times per second.

On the face of it, that sounds impossible.

Hang on, what is a Hertz?

Hertz is a transmission frequency, in cycles per second, to measure the speed of wireless communications.

Commonly abbreviated to Hz, the measurement is named after Heinrich Hertz, a German scientist from the 19th century.

Hertz proved the existence of electromagnetic waves, and the measurement is named in his honor.

Hz, Mhz, Ghz – What Are They?

1 Hertz is equal to 1 cycle per second, 1 Mhz (Megahertz) is equal to 1 million cycles per second and 1 GHz (Gigahertz) is equal to 1 billion cycles per second.

You may recognize Hz from computer chip speed and radiofrequency. It is a measurement used in many fields, and wireless doorbells use it to transmit a signal from the transmitter to the receiver.

Your wireless doorbell is likely to be using 433Hz, which is the same as many other devices both in and outside your home.

What happens when the signal reaches the receiver

wireless signal

A wireless receiver is built into the chime unit (also called a receiver). This wireless receiving unit is waiting for a signal from the transmitter.

As soon as the wireless signal reaches the receiver, it triggers a series of events within the receiver, ending in the chime sounding the alert you have chosen.

Some long-range wireless doorbells have a sensitive wireless receiver, which allows them to work at a long range. Although this is excellent if you have a large house, you must remember that a sensitive receiver may also pick up signals from other devices.

Regarding what happens within the receiver, that is purely down to how it has been designed. For example, like a switch circuit, where the switch completes the circuit to allow the signal, the wireless signal may act similarly.

Interference and what is the cause

wireless signal interference

The more wireless transmitters you have, the greater the potential to cause interference.

If you have issues with your wireless doorbell, you will need to look around your house to see if other devices are using the same frequency.

The devices are not limited to only those above, and many devices are utilizing this frequency.

Symptoms include the wireless doorbell not working at all, only working intermittently, or the chime going off at random intervals when the push button is not pressed!

There are other things to remember if you have issues with your wireless doorbell.

The transmission becomes weaker when it needs to travel through other objects around your house.

These objects can be walls, doors, fridges, and microwaves. Any big object will work against the transmitted signal, making it weaker as it passes through each item.

Other electrical items weaken the signal more than nonelectrical items. Do not think that a wall is a nonelectrical item! Instead, it is likely to have power cables running through the middle of it, and they can impact the strength of the signal.

Do Wireless Doorbells Need WiFi?

Most plug-and-play wireless doorbells do not need a WiFi connection. Usually, a WiFi connection is only required for doorbells with video integration or those that work with a smart home system such as Alexa or Google Home.

A WiFi Connection allowed connectivity to the internal for storing videos, accessing audio, and 2-way talk capabilities.

Doorbells without video integration will not need to access the internet.

How Do Battery-Operated Doorbells Work?

Battery-operated doorbells (in terms of the receiver) work the same way as those that need to be plugged in. The only difference is that you must add batteries to the doorbell receiver!


Now you know how a wireless doorbell works, troubleshooting doorbell issues are more straightforward!

If you are interested in how things work, like me, then hopefully, we have given you enough here to satisfy your thirst.

When setting up your wireless doorbell, consider what you have read here to ensure you have a setup that works 100% of the time.

Good luck!


In one sentence: We are a team of individuals who collectively hate drilling holes and running wires throughout our homes! To combat this hatred towards wires, we only deal with wireless items for your home. From wireless doorbells to wireless security systems, there are products out there that are easy to install, easy to set up, and above all, there are no wires! Well, there might be some wires, mostly for power!

6 thoughts on “How A Wireless Doorbell Works – Your Guide”

  1. Have a wireless doorbell works when plugged in to electric but once’s unplugged will not work on batteries, they are fully charged

    • Hi

      Thank you for getting in touch. Can I ask what model please?

      Have you looked through our post of common wireless doorbell issues?

      I would begin by checking the battery compartment. It is possible that the contacts have become corroded and therefore will not take the batteries charge any longer.

      Kind regards

    • Hi Clive

      The transmitter will only transmit the radio signal when the button is pushed. Some doorbells initiate the radio signal when the battery is getting low too.

      Hope that helps!

  2. I have a remote controlled elect gate to my PROPERTY, and i also have a WIRELESS door bell. Recently my gate has OCCASIONALLY started to partially open by itself, the gate company have attended many times and are nOw saying the Issue is being cauSed by my doorbell.
    The frequency of my gate is 433Mhz, and according to the specifications of my door bell its FREQUENCY is 433Hz. Im not sure if this is a MISPRINT of Hz Rather than Mhz.
    Are you able to offer me any advice please.

    • Hi – and thanks for getting in touch!

      It is very possible that your wireless doorbell is interacting with your gate because they are working on the same frequency.

      I have always found the Coolqiya wireless doorbell to be very good. In fact, the reviews specifically mention the fact that this make and model do not interfere with local garages.

      I hope that helps


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