Star (*)and pound keys (# ) on a phone handset are used to activate and deactivate phone calling features. These calling features could be voice mail, call forwarding, call blocking and others. Star and pounds keys followed by numeric code are use to activate and deactivate these calling features depending on your service provider. Example, to activate voice mail you have to press *98 or #98.
Star and pound keys would work only on tone dials not on pulse dial. What is tone dial? For easy understanding, when you press a number on the key pad of your phone handset, you will hear a long “toooot” sound. What is pulse dial? For pulse dial you will hear clicks or sound similar to that of the old rotary dial.
You may argue you have a push button phone handset not a rotary type of handset. That is good. For some reason it might have gotten switched to rotary dial. No worries you can switch back to tone dial by looking for a tiny slide switch at the bottom or side of your phone. The slide switch indicates a letter T and P. T for tone and P for pulse, simply slide the switch to letter T for star and pound keys to work.
Some push button handset phone may not have the slide switch. If you are unable to use star key, press 11 followed by the numeric code. Using my example *98 for voice mail, you can press 1198. If you are to use pound key, press 12 followed by the numeric code, example 1298 for #98. If this does not work, you can refer to the user guide or manual of the manufacture of the phone handset.
If you do not have the user guide you can download online. If you cannot follow the instruction, feel free to call the manufacturer of your phone handset. Do not call your service provider or the store where you bought the phone. The trouble is out of their scope of support. It will only be the tech from the manufacturer of the phone handset who can help you. So, make note of it. If you have phone calling features, make sure star (*) and pound (#) keys work on your handset