Fun with a Smoke Detector

About a week & a half ago, the smoke detector in my suite began to chirp.  If it had sounded like a little bird chirping, it wouldn’t have bothered me, but it was approximately 100% louder and very annoying.  It was a Sunday, so the resident manager is off duty.  There is an emergency number that can be called, but they stress that it is only for EMERGENCIES.  This was very annoying, but probably would not be considered an emergency.

I got out my little step stool to get up and take a look to see what kind of battery it took, but although I removed the cover, it was connected to the wall and there was no battery visible.  So, I put it back together.

I looked online for possible fixes and one suggestion was to hit it with some compressed air, in case the problem is dust.  I did that and it actually stopped chirping for a couple of hours before resuming.  Then it stopped again around 8:00 pm and was still off when I went to bed, so I was thankful about getting some sleep, since the chirp would have prevented that.

At 4:00 am, the chirping started again – every 30 seconds!

At 8:00 am on Monday when the resident was due in his office I went down to talk to him about getting it fixed.  I didn’t find him there until about 9:00 am though.  I told him the problem and he said to fill in a work order and he pointed over to where I could find them.  I did that, making sure I gave permission for him to enter if I wasn’t home and handed it back to him – stressing how annoying it was.

It wasn’t fixed when I returned home from my volunteer shift that day.  That night it stopped again around 8:00 pm and started the next morning at 4:00 am, but I was out most of the morning with errands and at a volunteer shift in the afternoon and thought he would have it fixed while I was gone.  I was wrong and it was still chirping when I returned home that afternoon.    I couldn’t find the resident manager anywhere, and since I was leaving early the next morning to head for Riding Mountain National Park, I just decided to live with it for a few more hours.  Certainly he would have it fixed while I was away.

I returned to my suite Thursday afternoon and before I even had the door open, I could hear the chirping.  I went straight back downstairs and found the manager in his office.  I asked how long it was going to take to replace the battery.  His reply was that he didn’t have any batteries, but he had ordered them, although he didn’t know when they would be delivered.  I looked at him in astonishment and asked him if he had any idea what it was like to listen to that noise every 30 seconds.  He replied that it must be annoying and then said he would phone in the morning to see if they could put a rush on the order.

I just shook my head and walked away.  I would be away again in the morning and figured it would be fixed when I returned.  What a surprise when it wasn’t fixed and I couldn’t find him.

Since it was now Friday and I had a full weekend ahead of me to listen to that noise, I decided to phone the head office and tell them my story.  I spoke to 2 ladies were were astounded that I had put up with this for so long (they could hear the chirping over the phone) and one of them promised to send someone over that day to fix it.

About 2 hours later, the resident manager knocked on my door and entered with the battery, which was actually the whole unit.  That is why I couldn’t see a battery, since it is enclosed in the unit.  I told him that I had phoned the office about the problem and he said they had called him about it and he volunteered to look after it so they wouldn’t have to send someone else.  Such a thoughtful guy!

This is a new resident manager, who has been here about 4 months and I have no idea if he treats other residents like this or not.  I don’t know if he really didn’t have the units or if he forgot about it or he just doesn’t like doing the alarms.   He has always seemed friendly enough when meeting him in the halls, so I have no idea what the problem was here.

The silence is wonderful now though!