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Friday
May092014

Does your NuTone Patio Speaker Station still work after all these years?

From the very beginning in the 1950's, NuTone offered outdoor Patio Speakers for their Radio Intercom Systems. The earliest Patio Stations were slightly modified Entry Door Stations with a very small 3-1/2” diameter speaker cone.

In the early 19060's NuTone began to sell larger Patio Stations which had a 5” diameter speaker cones and the Deluxe 2-piece Patio Station, included a small wall mounted Intercom Remote Control which was connect to a large, separate 8” diameter wall mounted speaker.

As new models were introduced, so were new and better designed Patio Stations. Even with the better designs, all Patio Stations have one common problem, they're located outdoors in the weather.

Sun, Rain, Snow and Wind take their toll on the paper in the Speaker Cones and sooner or later the speakers will stop working. Since NuTone Intercom Systems use speaker cones with special impedance ratings, which are matched to the system they are used in, you really can't just go out and buy any old speaker cone to replace the failed original. You need an original Genuine NuTone Part.

The problem with finding a genuine NuTone Replacement Patio Speaker Cone has always been the same, since outdoor Patio Stations are the first to wear out, any remaining stock of a discontinued model is the first to be used up. An added twist to this problem is that recently NuTone has discontinued manufacturing replacement speaker cones used in all models made between 1972 through 2008. Any remaining stock of Patio Speakers cones is already gone, so what should we do?

We will make our own Patio Speaker Cones.

The only difference between an “Inside Speaker Cone” and a “Patio Speaker Cone” is that the patio Speaker Cone has been treated to protect the paper cone in the speaker from Sun, Rain, Snow and Wind.

Protecting the paper cone is easy. We use a product called “The Wet Look” which is specifically designed to protect the paper cones from the elements and help them to last longer.

 

Here you can see a pair of standard 5” diameter NuTone inside speaker cones, these are both 25 ohm speakers, which are used in many models of NuTone Radio Intercom Systems made between 1972 and 2008. If you put one of these untreated speaker cones into a Patio Station out doors, it will likely last just 2-3 years before the weather rots the paper away.

Applying The Wet Look is easy, it's just brushed carefully onto the surface of the paper cone, making sure that all of the folds and creases are cover.

Let application dry over night and then apply a second coat. After it is thoroughly dried, install the treated speaker cone into your Patio Station.

If your NuTone Radio Intercom System has a deluxe 2-piece Patio Station, you will need a replacement 8” diameter Speaker Cone.

 

Here is a new 8” diameter NuTone 25 ohm Speaker Cone ready to be treated with The Wet Look.

Red Arrow is the treat side - Blue Arrow is the untreated side

You can see the difference once one-half of the speaker cones has been treated.

 

If you look carefully, you can see that with just one coat of The Wet Look, the coating looks blotchy in some areas. This is why 2 coats is needed to really protect the paper cone.

The Wet Look is commonly available to buy from many sources on-line and it's inexpensive. However a 4 oz. Jar is enough to coat between 25 and 30 speaker cones, many more than the average homeowner will ever have to do.

Since there is a real need for treated NuTone Patio Speaker Cones, we keep them in stock. Not just for our customers who send in equipment for repair, but for anyone who needs one. We don't charge any extra for the treatment of The Wet Look, we just charge for the Speaker Cone.

If you need a treated Genuine NuTone Patio Speaker Cone, contact us and we will send one to you.

 

NEXT UP: How to turn an “Inside Remote Station” into a “Patio Remote Station” . . . it's quite easy. . . really

 

 

Reader Comments (19)

I have a NuTone intercom system, and have searching for a replacement 5", 25 ohm speaker. I've found an eBay Seller asking $85 for a used one,... guessing he's saving up for the new iPhone?
There's got to be an inexpensive replacement voice-audio speaker,... the NuTone system IM-4406 isn't known for its quality sound anyway. My problem is that I don't know the specs required for the 5" patio speaker,... voltage/wattage. Can you help?

Many thanks, JM

September 11, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Maintz

Hi John,

I'm not really clear whether you are looking for a 5" 25 ohm speaker cone (repair part) or a complete remote station for a IM4406.

We stock genuine NuTone 5" speaker cones, both for Inside and Patio Stations, and they cost much less than $85.00.

If you looking for a complete remote station, do you need an Inside Remote or a Patio Remote. Finding patio Remote Stations is almost impossible (for a fair price) however we can convert an Inside Remote into a Patio Remote easily.

The IM4406 system does actually have a very nice sound quality for a mono music system, it may not be able to compete with a Bose or JBL system installed throughout an entire home, but those system would cost 20 times the amount of the IM4406 system

Perhaps your IM4406 isn't setup and adjusted properly to provide the best sound

Chris

September 12, 2014 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

where can i buy speaker for intercom system 5” diameter

December 17, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterlocksmith

Hi Locksmith,

You can buy genuine NuTone Speaker Cones fro us.

Please call our office to order the speaker cone you need, You will need to know the Model Number of the System to insure you order the correct speaker cone.

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

December 17, 2014 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

Hello, thanks to some help from your website I have gotten almost all of my Nutone 2090 system working. All the interior stations are now up and running and I am staring on the Patio speaker. Turns out I must have gotten the deluxe package because my system has the two piece with the 8" poly planar speaker. However after testing the speaker, both by hooking it up to another station and putting a multimeter on it, I have determined the speaker is toast. So questions #1: do you have replacement 8" 3.2 ohm speakers? Questions 2: the controll unit is pretty badly corroded, but it appears to be an interior unit with additional jumpers for the speaker wires. I would like to modify the controller to fit into a standard electrical box for a more finished look, is that something you have done in the past. And Question #3: I haven't messed with the front door unit yet, but it is much smaller with a single black button, what should I expect to find when I open it up and what is the function of the button?

Thanks again for all your help

June 8, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTony

Hi Tony,

To answer your questions:

1. The original Poly-Planer type of speakers have not been available for decades, however I do have genuine NuTone 8" 3.2 ohm speaker cones that can be treated for outdoor use. You will need some additional space behind the speaker cone because these speakers are deeper than the Poly-Planer speaker.

2. Back in those days, outdoor equipment was not really any different than inside equipment. Your original Patio Remote Control is the same as the model that would have been used inside. The Patio Remote Control does not have a Model Number of its own, since it came with the Patio Speaker as a set.
The Patio Remote Control is a 2 piece unit, there is the Control Insert itself and it is mounted in its plastic frame. In this configuration it will fit a standard 2-gang electrical box. If it was to be a Surface-Mounted Control, a Model N2013 (surface-mount enclosure) would have been used. The Control Insert
would have been removed from its mounting frame and placed into the Surface Mounted N2013

3. The Entry Door Speaker is treated just like an Inside Station, except there is no volume control. If the Room-Selector Switch for the Entry Door Station is in the Radio-Intercom Position, you will have Music at the Entry Door. If it is in the Off Position, you will not be able to communicate to the Entry Door, however your inside room-to-room conversations will not be heard at the outside entry either. The black button on the Entry Door Speaker is just like the Push-to-Talk button on the inside stations. The visitor is required to use it to talk to someone inside the house. If you a little lucky the switch will still operate. or it can be cleaned and made operational again. The speaker cone is a 3-1/2" 3.2 ohm cone, which is impossible to find today. You can use a modern 3-1/2" 16 ohm cone with out any real problems, it will just have slightly lower volume than the original


If there are parts and pieces that you need, please contact me any time

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

June 9, 2015 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

Chris, thank you again for your answers and the additional help you provided over the phone.

One more question about my mono RCA input jack. I successfully connected the stereo output of my computer to the mono input via a 1/8 to RCA then to an RCA "Y" I created with some resistors in line. Not sure if the resistors are overkill, but that is what was recommended in other forums for merging a stereo signal to mono.

Now for the question, attached to the RCA jack are two wires (black and blue) which have a tag which says "low level audio output" the one wire is connected to the ground on the RCA jack, but I can not trace the other wire without dismantling the board. These wires are cut off flush and connected to nothing else within the master unit. Is there some type of bass or sub-woofer signal carried on these wires?

Thanks again and in advance.

Tony

June 9, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTony

Hi Tony,

It is totally unnecessary to add resistors into the audio line between your computer and the input of the Intercom. Just using standard audio cable will work fine. In some cases your computer to Intercom connection may cause a slight hum on the Intercom System, due to a impedance mismatch between the 2 units. In these cases you can use a simple 1:1 Audio Isolation Transformer to remove the hum, these are often used in Auto Stereo Systems to remove hum. There are also impedance matching audio isolation transformers available at DAK.COM. These do a good job at matching the 8 ohm output of your sound card to the 47K phono input of the Intercom.

The "low-level" output was intended to be used in an office setting where background music was needed. It would have been connected to a separate NuTone Amplifier and that amplifier would drive the background music speakers.

Chris

June 10, 2015 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

how much would a 8" 3.2 model 2084/2085 replacement speaker cost ?

August 6, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterbill

Hi Bill,

Unfortunately 3.2 ohm 8" speaker cones are no longer available and used speaker cones are very difficult to find anymore.

You can use a 8" 8 ohm speaker cone in place of the original 3.2 ohm cone. This will result in a very slight drop in volume form the speaker, but hardly enough to be noticed. It will not effect the operation of the Intercom and it will not adversely effect the amplifier

I have 8 ohm 8" speaker cones available, please call me to find out about ordering one

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

August 7, 2015 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

I want to replace my entry door speakers that have damaged cones would a 4 ohm 3-1/2" speaker be OK or an 8 ohm because the original 3.2 ohms which aren't available.

August 8, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBill

Hi Bill,

A 4 ohm speaker cone will work fine with your early NuTone system. If you can't find a 4 ohm speaker cone, then an 8 ohm cone would be the next best choice, followed by a 16 ohm cone.

As the speaker cone impedance increases, there will be a slight drop in volume at the door speaker station.

Thanks
Chris

August 10, 2015 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

looking for replacement 5" 25 ohm speaker for nutting patio. would prefer higher wattage (if possible) as i would like speaker to be louder & better quality. where i can i find better quality replacement speakers (jbl etc)?

thanks

May 22, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterhector f

Hi Hector,

This type of questions comes up quite often. My answer will probably not be what you want to hear, but here it goes. . .

The quality and amount of sound in any audio system (including NuTone Systems) has more to do with the amplifier than it does with the actual speakers. That being being said, it's important to consider that the speakers in your NuTone systems are matched to the amplifier to provide both music and Intercom communication.

So here's my classic example of why installing HiFi speakers cones won;t improve the sound of your system:

Lets say one day you decide to stop by your local JC Penney store and buy a new home stereo. You choose the very best $129.00 Stereo that is sold at JC Penney's.

On the way out of the mall you decide to stop by the Bose Store and pick up a pair of $600.00 Bose cabinet speakers to use with your new JC Penny's Stereo. You're certain that when you get all home, your JC Penney's Stereo will sound amazing, just like a $2000.00 Bose system. . .

Plan on being disappointed. .

You get everything hooked up, turn it on and guess what happens? It basically sounds terrible. Why?

It's because the JC Penny stereo is not designed to drive high powered speakers like Bose. The amplifier in the JC Penny's stereo is matched to the speakers that is sold with it.

The other consideration is that since most Home and Auto speaker are either 4 ohm or 8 ohm speakers, they will quickly overload the amplifier in your NuTone System and burn it out.

When NuTone Systems are mis-adjusted or are in need of repair, they may not perform at their best, You can contact me directly for more information about your specific situation

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

May 23, 2016 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

Can you direct me on how to check if the speaker works or not? I have an IMA4406 and quite frankly, the "talk" function never really worked properly when our home was originally built. I had the builder come out and he could not figure out the issue. Anyhow, I could contact the original electrician but I wanted to troubleshoot myself. (I did fix our issue with the doorbell. BUT, I must order a new speaker/part number 36076 and button/part number PB18LWHCL).
Where should I start in troubleshooting the issue in communicating between rooms. Sometimes we get lucky and we can hear each other but at a low volume. I wonder if our system was Looped instead of Home Run wired.
Additionally, do you know if the "Ring" video doorbell can be interfaced with the Nutone system?
Lots of questions, sorry.
Rosemarie

August 12, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRosemarie

Hi Rosemarie,

The best thing you can do is call me during our office hours to discuss the problems with your IMA4406 System. It would be very difficult for me to give you written troubleshooting instructions.

You can also order the Door Speaker Cone and Pushbutton at the same time.

I have a Ring Video Door Bell on my home and I find it to be a very good product. Unfortunately it will not incorporate into your IMA4406 Intercom System (or any NuTone intercom system)

What most people would like is for the Ring Video Door Bell to have the ability to activate the Chime Module in your Intercom System, along with its normal functionally.

The Ring Door Bell lacks the necessary "dry contact" relay that would all this to work. Also you can not power the Ring Door Bell from the wires that are already connected to the pushbutton on your Entry Door Station

These wires come form the Chime Module and it is not designed to power any type of device.

When some tries to make this connection, they will simply burn out the Chime Module ( I kow this because I have repaired many that have failure in trying to use it this way)

Please call me when you have a chance and lets get your IMA4406 working

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

August 13, 2016 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

Chris,

Thank you for providing these nearly impossible to find speakers. I was happy I didn't have to try to find a whole new outdoor panel.

Thanks again,
Leigh

October 3, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLeigh

So glad I found this site! I recently purchased a house built in 1972 that is equipped with the 2561/2562 model. 4 bedroom units, 3 outdoor/patio units, and a front door speaker. They all seem to function but have a really low volume. I followed your instructions on setting each unit up and still have a low volume. The FM/AM radios do not work either. My main focus is the intercom system for now, though. I'm in the process of cleaning each station as you recommended as well. Not sure where to start after that. Checking speakers and wiring at each station first? Also, if one station has an issue, will that cause trouble to the rest of the system?

Thanks for all of the amazing and rare information you provide!


-Kris

November 10, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKris

Hi Kris,

There can be many causes for Low Volume on your N2561/N2562 System.. Before you get to far into the troubleshooting, you should give me a call.

I can help you streamline your efforts to find the source of the problem(s). If it turns out to be a problem with your N2561/N2562, it is a completely repairable model.

Thanks
Chris
925-743-8236

November 10, 2016 | Registered CommenterCindy & Christopher

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