Smoke Detectors

I hate smoke detectors. Yeah, yeah, yeah they save lives, I know, but come on do the people that make smoke detectors sit around and devise ways to make people like me crazy. I got home today after a long day at work and as I sit down to check my email and relax, beeeeep. I thought smoke detector or maybe I am hearing things but then a few minutes later, beeeeep. Ok that is definitely a smoke detector so, off to our many “junk” drawers to search for a nine volt battery. Why a nine volt? I mean, I don’t think I own anything else that takes that type of battery so needless to say we don’t have a large supply. I finally locate a new nine volt, but now comes the real challenge, which of the FIVE smoke detectors in our house is in need of the only new battery I have. We don’t have a large house so why do we need smoke detectors that are less than two feet from each other.

Now, you think that the geniuses at the smoke detector factory would possibly make a way to determine that the battery needs to be replaced besides beeping every few minutes. NOPE, no lights nothing, except a beep every few minutes. So I have to stand under each one and wait for the beep and it is not as easy as you think. You don’t know when the beep is coming and they are all so close together that it really is confusing. So I eliminate Little Miss’s room and our room and the door to the office room was closed so I did not think it was in there. So that left the one in the hall and the one in the living room. I got on a stool in the hall and waited for the beep, not the one in the hall it must be the one at the top of our vaulted ceilings in the living room, perfect. Of course the stool is not tall enough so I have to get the ladder.

Out to the backyard to find the ladder it was out because we are going to paint the house so at least I did not have to venture to the spider infested shed. I drag the ladder in the house and up I go to change the battery. Sounds easy enough but then, beeeep, not the one in the living room. What? I thought I had eliminated all the other options? So I went back to the hall and waited, beeeep, not the hall. It was then I realized that the door the office was not completely shut. Finally! I found the beeping detector.

So I drag the ladder into the doorway and up I go. From now on it should be easy then, right? WRONG. I can’t get the stupid battery compartment open. The base of the detector says to consult the owners manual before operating. WHAT? Who has the owners manual for the smoke detector!!! I mean come on!! I twist to see if I can remove it from the ceiling and get to the battery that way. I got the detector down and unplugged it from the house, which by the way makes all of the detectors in the house beep every few minutes. Nice and relaxing, but it should only take a minute to remove the battery and replace with a new one right? WRONG! I can’t get to the battery from the back and I still can’t get the stupid thing open.

I resort to calling Jim and pleading for him to come home for lunch and fix the stupid thing. He tries to walk me though opening the compartment but no luck. Then I set the stupid thing off not just beeping occasionally it is going off all the time now. Jim is working nights this week at the High School so he came home early for lunch to help me out since I was about ready to chuck all the smoke detectors out the front door and run over them repeatedly with the truck.

Jim gets home and POP the battery compartment just comes open with no problem. Now I really want to run the things over. I put the new battery in and it sets it off again. Good grief does it ever end? I think somewhere in a conference room there are people laughing and saying “I know as our last laugh, when they put the battery back we can make the detectors go off until they plug it back into the house.” Well despite the stupid people that make smoke detectors I got it plugged back in and we are now again, safe from fire.
I guess along with painting the house this weekend I will buy some nine volts and replace the other detectors so that I don't have to go though that again for a while.


Jimh. said…
May the makers of smoke detectors be damned to an eternity of sleep interupted by odd little beeps with no apparent cause! I love your blog!

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