Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Why do smoke detector batteries always go out in the middle of the night?  Never in the daylight?

Why do we go pretend it may stop beeping and we can just go back to sleep?  Has this ever happened?

Why do we have nine smoke detectors?

Why do they beep at such a random, intermittent frequency, making it impossible to anticipate the next beep?

Why does the ability to figure out which direction a sound is coming from seem to decline at night?

Why do we have no spare 9-volt batteries in the house?

Why can't we remember if removing the battery from one will make them all go off at once?  When they are hard-wired together?

Why do we forget how very, very loud the alarm in the boys' bedroom is?

(FYI: about a zillion decibels, because it's for the Hard of Hearing!  And it has a flashing strobe light!  Fun!)

Here's a tip that we apparently forgot last October: 

Change all your smoke detector batteries when you change your clocks on/off daylight savings time, which is about every six months.

That was a freebie, from me to you.  Then maybe you can avoid wandering around the house at 1am, getting frozen feet, trying to figure out which smoke detector is beeping, and why - with nine (an odd number!) smoke detectors - do we not have one spare battery?  Don't they come in packs of even numbers?  This is even more mysterious than the hot-dog and bun conundrum.


Q said...

Oh my - thou art a better woman than I. I think I may simply walked around the house with a gun and shot them all out.

Ruby said...

Another universal concern. I feel better knowing that my Grasshopper friends will not go out in a house fire :-)

melanie said...

Would you like to know why they go off when they are hard-wired and only been on the grid since mid-July? And there's absolutely no smoke in the house. What a nightmare. Unfortunately we require more than batteries to fix it. :-\

The dB family said...

Nine?!? Ours like to go off in the dead of summer when all the windows are wide open. Good thing no neighbours live too close. I can totally envision you wandering about in your sleep induced state trying to figure out which one it is. Ugh!

Here's to a good night's sleep tonight!

Felicity said...

Ha ha - we don't even have smoke detectors... Should that make us sleep better?? Or lie awake worrying about fires??

Anonymous said...

love it...brought a smile to my face and a chuckle to my throat...hope you can catch up on sleep today/tonight! Generally in South Africa we don't have smoke detectors at home but we certainly do have burglar alarms with the same tendencies...."hard wired" to armed response call centres...so we deal with phone calls as well as problematic batteries!! Joan

DJP said...

Weirder: something cooking gets a little crispy, all the alarms go off.

Something actually catches fire -- nothing!

Cathy M. said...

I'm sorry your pain is so funny to me. I truly do feel bad for you, but can't stop myself from snickering.

Years ago I managed a property where a smoke detector was going off and no one could locate it. It took most of the day to discover that it had been enclosed in an interior wall during a renovation years earlier.

EmmaVerdona124 said...

that's crazy right?
I only have 1 smoke dectector in my house and I can't hear the "LOW BATTERY" warning when I sleep only the chirp due to my hearing loss
(I'm moderate/severe with severe loss in high frequencies)

Herding Grasshoppers said...

On no, Emma! How do you know when it needs a new battery, then?

Dan - sadly, ours will also go off just about anytime something drips in the oven. But hey, I don't have to call the boys to dinner, right? Just come to the table when you hear the smoke alarm ;D

Joan and Felicity, my parents' house is fairly remote and they have a burglar alarm that alerts a security company. We went through a cycle of false alarms making us all crazy until they realized that a mylar balloon would waft around the house in their absence and set off the motion sensors. Ooops!

Herding Grasshoppers said...


what caught fire???

EmmaVerdona124 said...

LOL I only hear the chirp sounds since my bedroom is close to the hallway.