Thursday, July 01, 2004

Beeb, Beep!

We have four smoke detectors in our house. When the batteries start to go, they make an annoying “chirp” or “beep” noise. If you open the cover and/or remove the battery, they will continue to make this noise (there must be something in there drawing enough current from somewhere to generate this tone into infinity!). About 3 weeks ago, when two of the detectors started up with the beeping, I replaced the 9-volt batteries in all the detectors. That many 9-volts are not cheap, and putting the batteries in causes the alarm to sound—it’s VERY loud when you’re standing that close to it!

Fast forward to last night—the detector nearest the laundry room has not stopped beeping, even after I replaced the battery. In fact, the beeps are becoming louder and more insistent. Let me tell you though, just in case you think this is something a household could learn to tune out, they’re COMPLETELY RANDOM! Sometimes it’ll been in 2 seconds, sometimes it takes a whole minute or more. So Eric took the detector down (he was over for dinner). While holding it in his hand, we heard the beep again. Wha? Where’d that come from? Oh, maybe we were mistaken…perhaps it’s the detector in the hallway near my bedroom. But that can’t be, because when we close the access door to the laundry and sewing rooms, the noise abates. BEEP. It beeped again in his hand. Or was it in his hand? Damn, this is getting weird.

I took the detector out of his hands, walked through the length of the house, through the kitchen and put it on the table in the backyard. As I walked back toward my sewing machine, “BEEP”! Holy Shit, where is this fucking thing?!

All night long, random, insistent beeps, getting louder by the day. Where are they coming from? We have a mystery to solve and we have to solve it before my sister and her kids attempt to sleep in that room when they visit us in a couple of weeks…. Wish us luck!