Thursday, February 21, 2008


That's how I felt today when the carbon monoxide detector went off again. The last time
I had the car so I could pack up and leave the house. Not this time. So there I was in my lounge wear, two kids in their jammies, and a dog freaking out because of the noise. Did I mention that the temperature is still below zero here? I grabbed my recipe from the furnace company and called the service department. Just in case my panicky voice didn't make it pretty obvious to the receptionist I made sure to repeat to her, "Please make sure you tell the service man that the detector is going off, I have two small children, and I have no way of leaving the house. Have him call me right away please."

I couldn't just sit there waiting by the phone so I turned the furnace off, bundled the kids in hats and scarves, and called the fire department. Ten minutes later a police officer was at our door to offer us a warm car to sit in while we waited for the fireman to check out the house. We were still getting boots on when the fireman arrived so we never did sit in the cruiser. Sam was pretty shaken up about the "air catecter" going off, but once I removed the battery and put some clothes on him, he calmed down.

The little meter thing they use to check the CO2 levels didn't find any CO2 anywhere in the house. What a relief. So why was the detector going off? The detector we have is not the type you plug into the wall nor does it give a digital read out. Both of these features are recommended by the fire department. As I understand it the battery kind have this little card that serves as a memory for the detector. It reads little bits of CO2 and stores it on the card. Over time that card fills up and will set off the alarm. I'd call that a poor design, but what do I know. I'm not 100% sure what the deal was with our oven then, but until I get a digital detector I'm not going to risk turning it on. We're doing quite well with a hot plate.

For the record: The furnace company's repairman did return my call....three hours later. He said that office lady hadn't relayed the message correctly.


Killlashandra February 25, 2008 at 12:52 PM  

What a lame excuse from the furnance company especially when CO2 poisoning is such a critical and important fear. I'm so glad the firemen arrived and the police just to make sure everything was safe.

I had no idea the battery kind stored up that kind of information. Might be time for a trade in for the new ones, I agree that is poor design.

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