Thursday, November 5, 2009

Safety First

Okay, so the votes are in .... and it seems everyone's pretty supportive of, well, whatever vice I choose to have. Though I'm not sure how much it helped in my whole decision-making process I so appreciate that everyone took the time to weigh in! You guys all rock.

But before I took this morning to really decide if I was going to start the day with a cup of coffee or a cup of tea, the decision, for practicality reasons, was sorta made for me.

Last night, just as I was settling in to begin writing and critting, after the husband went off to work and the kidlets were tucked into bed, our carbon monoxide detector went off. And I don't mean it did it's weekly test, beeping a couple times obnoxiously and then saying "this was only a test" it WENT OFF. Needless to say, I panicked. I mean, my children! Save the children! Save the children!! Call 911!!

But then, it turned off. I had a pretty major What the ----?!?!? moment, seeing as the device had just awoken our 4-year-old on a school night, and had the 18 month old baby screaming with every beep. So I get the kids tucked back into bed. All is well.

False alarm. (You see, we have two other detectors in the house, and neither of them were panicked about anything.)

Then the blasted thing went off AGAIN! Just long enough to wake the kids and irritate the blazes out of me. Then it turned off. We just replaced the batteries. We test it every week. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with it.

Mind you, I realize that there is no really GOOD way to know without the detectors of CO2 as it is odorless, colorless, etc, etc.

With my children in tow, I went and grabbed one of the other detectors we had and put both units side by side. Nothing happened. NOTHING!

So just to be safe, I opened all the upstairs windows (had to shut off the heat) and grabbed both my kidlets to come sleep with me, because more people in the bed = warmer place to sleep, and then proceeded to wake up EVERY 30-45 minutes, just to make sure my kids were still breathing. I'm a mom, what can I say. No more beeping. Kids got to sleep. Life is much better.

This morning Husband stopped and picked up one of those hand held tester units at Home Depot on his way home and proceeded to wander around the entire house testing to make sure that when he went to sleep with the baby today, things were all good. -- Even the detector that is closest to our furnace & water heater (the only gas appliances in the house) had a reading of almost 0.

But I did learn 1 big lesson in all my rampant panicked mom research last night: If you start your car to warm it up before you leave in the morning / at night / whenever .... don't do it if it is parked in the garage, regardless of how much you have the door open.  Back it out first. That is the only thing we can figure out that would have caused the inflated levels of CO2. Our bedrooms are upstairs, above the garage, and husband had started his car to warm it up before leaving for his night shift. The CO2 can collect inside the enclosed space, even with the garage door open all the way.

Lesson learned.

So there is the long winded reason for what is in my cup today. I don't think I'd be able to keep my eyes open ... or function at all this morning without some concentrated form of caffeine... so, yeah. Here's to my first cup back on the wagon.

P.S. If you don't have a CO2 detector in your house - GET 1. Get several. You should have 1 everywhere you have a smoke detector. They sell really affordable combo-smoke detector/CO2 detectors now that you can put in place of existing units. Most new homes come with these, but you might want to double check.

And no, I'm not being commissioned by anyone to promote all this. I just want to make sure your families are safe too!


ElanaJ said...

Wow! What a night. I'm glad everything turned out okay. Hope the day goes caffeinely well.

Stephanie said...

Oh my goodness!! What a night!!!!!! Hope you're functioning well today!!!!

Our house has a combo unit that is hard wired batteries to check!! Yippee!!!

Mandy said...

I totally bet it was the car in the garage! Seriously, those things are touchy for a reason. Process of elimination always delivers!!

Bethany Wiggins said...

I loose more sleep because of my kids than for any other reason. I am glad it all worked out! And thanks for the tip!

Your blog is beautiful.