I was woken at 4.45 yesterday morning by two high pitched beeps. I knew instantly where they were coming from, but I buried my head under the bed clothes and hoped that it would not happen again. I did not want to be awake at 4.45 am - I had to work until 9.00 pm last night. I went back to sleep and was woken again at 6.45 am by two more high pitched bleeps. This time I got up and tried to silence the culprit, without any luck.
This has happened before and initially it was not obvious to me what it was. There are now so many gadgets in what was once two Victorian cottages, that it was difficult to know where to start looking for the culprit. How did the Victorans manage without all these gadgets? Quite easily, because they had not been invented. Could it be the computer - it often beeps if there is a power cut or if its' temperature gets too high. Could it be the burglar alarm - it's sometimes temperamental. Or is it something else? Could it be from outside? Is it coming from the neighbours? No, it was none of these. It was coming from one of the smoke alarms, which are wired into an electrical circuit and there was no smoke and no fire. So what was the problem? The smoke alarms have batteries in them which should be replaced every twelve months. The electrician probably told me this when he fitted the smoke alarms, but twelve months after the alarms were fitted we were gearing up for a builder to demolish the garage and semi gut the upstairs of the house. Changing batteries which were still working was not on our agenda at the time. I read the smoke alarm information leaflet, switched off the electricity as instructed and tried to take the cover off the amoke alarm to get the battery out. It wouldn't budge and after several attempts I thought that the whole thing was going to come off the ceiling. I phoned the electrician who told me to do what the information leaflet said but still the cover wouldn't come off. Eventually my husband realised that the smoke alarm didn't have a cover - it was in two pieces and you slide it apart. And there seems to be a knack to doing it, which I don't have. More than likely it is brute force and ignorance. Now, I just need that man with the knack or brute force and ignorance to sort out the problem.