Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Cool Kid

I think our 77 year old is on the verge of feeling like a cool kid thanks to a few updates we've done around here lately.

When we first moved in, one of the things we got right away was a Nest thermostat.

We've had it almost 3 months now and have had some intermittent wiring issues which has resulted in Matt spending literally hours on the phone with Nest support. One day, just a few weeks ago, they broke down and agreed to send out a certified Nest technician.  So far so good.  Fingers Crossed!

Besides the wiring issues, it's been great. I love that it learns our schedule and that I can control it from my phone, and let's be honest, it just looks cool too.  It also sends us energy reports (I'm usually in the top 20% of Nest users, I know you were wondering) and emails me every month with an overview of  our usage, for example in September we used 144 less hours than in August.

We had a trip planned for the end of September to go to Maryland for one of Matt's HBS classmate's weddings.  A few days before we left I decided with an immediate urgency that I must get the Nest smoke/carbon monoxide alarm before the trip.

Although this seems crazy, it's not really that surprising because I am a known freak when it come to fire hazards and always have anxiety that the house will catch on fire while we're gone.  My grandparents beloved home burned to the ground when I was 10 and it's one of those momentous childhood events that has left a major impact. So although rationally, I know I go overboard, I can't stop. Therefore being able to monitor the smoke alarm while away from home sounded like a dream.

So I made a trip to Home Depot and came home with this.

There are 4 smoke alarms in the house, one in the downstairs hallway, one in each of the downstairs bedrooms, and one upstairs.  I plan to eventually replace all of them with Nests and even add a fifth in the basement, but for now I just got one and decided to put it in the hallway.  The reasoning being that it was centrally located and it sits right above the basement door which is where carbon monoxide would come from (since the furnace is in the basement).

There it is on the ceiling, right outside the kitchen which is nice too because whereas kitchen smoke used to make the old alarm go off, this alarm blinks yellow and calmly tells me it is detecting smoke.

Not that I burn food often or anything...but sometimes when you sit down to watch an episode of Girls you forget to toss the roasting vegetables. One of the hidden dangers of not having an open floor plan,  I guess.

That door on the right leads down to the basement.  The other cool thing is that the thermostat and the  alarm "talk" to each other, so if the alarm senses rising levels of carbon monoxide it will tell the thermostat to shut the furnace off.  Now our well being just hinges on these two staying on good terms.  As long as Thermostat doesn't start snapchatting Alarm's boyfriend we should be fine. 

The good news is that I got to obsessively check on the alarm while we were in Maryland and we came home to a house that was still standing. 

See?  I'm smiling in this picture because I've just checked on the alarm and saw that everything was ok.  Good times.

Also, Matt and I went to see Gone Girl on Friday night and I kept thinking I was going to get in trouble by the usher because I pulled my phone out no less than 3 times to check the alarm.  What can I say?  But since we're on the subject, Gone Girl was really good.  One of the best book to movie adaptations I've ever seen.

Synopsis: there are more Nest alarms in my future and I wouldn't hate seeing Gone Girl again.  Just try and keep up with me.

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