Sunday, November 05, 2017

Never assume...

My security system company is having growing pains that are really, really, really frustrating.  Trying to get to tech support these days often requires an hour or more on hold.  This from a company whose business model is based upon customer installed systems.

I called for one problem and learned that my system is still under warranty.  That means that I can still get an inset sensor for the basement entry free of charge.  When I had the other two door sensors switched out immediately after getting the system, I somehow overlooked the basement door, the first door for which I had to jury-rig a means of attaching the sensor.  I have never felt comfortable with my solution for the sensor and was grateful to hear that I could have an inset one ... the kind that you drill into the top of your door and the bottom of the top of your door frame so that the sensors are inaccessible to the common thief.

Tonight, Firewood Man came over with his 3/4 inch drill bit and took care of the installation!  My doors were made onsite back in 1920, so the wood is HARD.  There is no way that I could have drilled a hole.  Plus, the new sensors are twice as long (deep) as the ones I received nearly two years ago.

All three of my doors have glass in them, so I have a double-keyed deadbolt on them ... where you have to have a key on both sides.  The front door is an oversized French door, and I think, even with all that glass, would be hard to destroy because of that hard wood.  The back and basement doors are ones with large single pane.  So, I didn't want a sensor that was easily viewed from the outside.  Thus, I already feel much safer with the sensor installed.

I keep thinking about seeing to the cost of a motion sensor in the basement, because I would like the advanced notice if someone managed to break the glass and crawl through it, go down the stairs, into the other room, and back up the basement stairs to the kitchen.  However, once there, the intruder would set off the motion detector.  That's probably why I haven't taken that step.

The other thing Firewood Man did was to get the window above the treadmill and recumbent bike open for me.  There was this crazy long, ancient bolt being used as a window security pin.  I got the left side out, but not the right.  He finally got it out, but the window wouldn't open.  When it finally did, we realized we had never cut through the paint from this summer's paint job.  That window now needs to be painted again.  SIGH.  However, now I won't be so stinkin' hot whenever the heat kicks on whilst I am torturing myself on either piece of exercise equipment.

I was trying to figure out how to hold the window up because it was resting on Firewood Man's head whilst he worked on cleaning up the paint and stuff that was making it hard to close the window back up.  When I said that maybe I should get a hook and eye doohickey, Firewood Man suddenly said I wouldn't need one.  He'd already noticed the hook attacked to the window and found the eye in the joist above us.  I think I would still like something I could just wedge in the bottom to keep the window open just a bit since being wide open won't be necessary in the dead of winter.

I was too chicken to ask about the window opposite this one, even though I know the value of a good cross draft.  When I checked myself later—looking not working—I spotted another hook and eye.  I will try to remember to go and cut the other four basement windows from the outside before I try opening any more from the inside.  With two entrances to the basement, one being an outside entrance, I never worried much about opening the windows.  But I now need some cold winter air by the treadmill at least.  Mission accomplished.  I can worry about the rest later.

Before he left, Firewood Man shot the breeze with me a bit.  He knows how lonely I am and gives me some time whenever he can.  It is sad, to me, that he feels less safe in my neighborhood since he first started coming over to my house.  The whole city is less safe, but so is my neighborhood.  It is weird to look around at my beautiful old house and think about the decline of the neighborhood happening all around it.  Not a heavy decline, but a marked one nonetheless.

That is why he was so willing to come over as soon as possible to switch out the sensor.  He fully supports both making the house safer and helping me to feel more safe.  I like that about him.  And that he mows.  And his firewood.  And his countrified patience and mercy he always shows to me.

To me even when I block the door because I was peeved he didn't have the sawzall with him, my solution for the window bolt problem.  He didn't have it with him because he wanted to eyeball the problem.  I was so certain it was needed I was miffed and sulked quite a bit as we went downstairs to the basement.  I was equally certain the entire time he was working on the door sensor and left him to his own devices for the first time ever when working in my hope (I'm a side-seat driver even in home repair).  I was so certain right up until the moment he pulled the bolt out.

But you know what they say about assuming something.

He was right to wait and see.  I was wrong about what tool we needed.  Instead of a sawzall, we needed a painter's knife, a cutting blade, and locking pliers.  I was wrong and he was right.  SIGH.

But let's not focus on that.  Let's focus on new sensors and open windows rather that how we got here.  And the blatant reminder lesson I got about making assumptions.  And how mercifully that lesson was given despite my sulky ways when I was certain I was right.  I don't deserve the blessing that is Firewood Man to me!

Oh, and if you need help programing an IQ security system panel?  I'm your gal.  No question is too small or two embarrassing.  My especial skill is to add and delete sensors.  But I can also run tests and customize the system for you.

Ah ... the things you learn as a homeowner!

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