Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Smoke detector

All of my fretting about my car was good in one respect: It got my mind off of the fact that, on Sunday morning while I was getting ready to go out, my smoke detector decided to start chirping at me every 90 seconds. I called it in to maintenance, who, apparently decided to do nothing about it -- which I didn't notice because it stopped on its own.

. . . Until 5 am Monday morning.

Needless to say, I was ready to kill someone by the time the maintenance guy showed up to fix it (at around 10:30 that morning). Nothing like five-plus hours of constant, shrill beeping to put a girl in a good mood. It's a good thing that I'm somewhat of an expert in sleeping through alarms. (And at least it wasn't building-wide this time. Actually, there hasn't been one of those in a while.)

Right after they finally quieted the damn thing -- which took all of five minutes -- I had a realization: I'd have been better off cooking something smoky enough to really set the thing off, and then waiting for the fire department to come and fix it for me.


Jeff said...

Usually when the smoke detector starts chirping it means it's time to change the battery. They usually take 9V batteries. Replacing the battery should stop the chirping.

dara said...

I know that NOW!

In all seriousness, I already knew that. The thing is, our maintenance people supposedly change the batteries on whatever schedule is recommended (my understanding is that it's twice a year, when you change your clocks). So I called them to let them know that mine went bad early (perhaps because of the enlargement of Daylight Savings Time?), and they said they'd take care of it, so I left. When I got back to the apartment, it was quiet, so I assumed that they had already been there to change the battery.

When it started again at 5 am, I was not in the mood to get up, and wouldn't have had the right battery around anyway. And it's not like there was anywhere for me to go at that hour to buy a replacement.

Jeff said...

If it's any consolation, one of our smoke detectors started chirping around 6am two weekends ago, and when I went to change the battery, it hit me on the head (this smoke detector is on the ceiling and kinda hard to reach).

DSL said...

This happened to me late one night in my old place. It drove me absolutely crazy and there was no way I was going to be able to sleep. (And of course, it's not considered an emergency.) I finally managed to yank out the battery and it still blared. I ended up disconnecting a wire or two to finally silence it. Amazingly, I didn't break the thing and maintenance came hours later during regular business hours to replace the battery.

dara said...

Jeff & DSL: Those were two reasons why I opted to do nothing when it started chirping at 5am. First, the risk of injury -- magnified because of the early hour, and second, the risk that disconnecting it would make it worse.