WWT: Three Household Quirks That Will Make You Ask “What Was That”?
We all get used to our homes relatively quickly. We may notice some little faults that we then put right. Then there are the other little quirks that aren’t faults. For example, maybe you get very poor cell service in the kitchen and need to take calls in the living room. Or before coming on, your washing machine makes a noise that sounds like the opening beats to “Superstition” by Stevie Wonder.
We get used to those. They become part of the personality of the home, and we refer to them in conversation. All good. There are a lot of things your house may do from time to time, and sometimes you only notice them after a while living there. So you have to judge whether they’re harmless quirks you can live with, or they need more investigation. Let’s call them WWTs – for “What Was That?”.
WWT #1: Your Lights Dim And Flicker For No Apparent Reason
We all know that when an appliance is used suddenly, it can have an effect on other things around it. In TV dramas when a prisoner is being executed by electric chair, it is even used as a shorthand. That way they don’t need to show the gruesome stuff. Just show some lights flickering, and viewers know exactly what has happened.
It doesn’t need to be an electric chair; any appliance can make this happen. The appliance doesn’t even need to be in your house, so if the lights flicker, it’s not a big deal. That said, if it’s happening more and more often, there may be a deeper issue. It is at this point that it’s worth checking with electricians to trace the problem and remedy it.
WWT #2: You Hear Clicks And Bumps In The Night
You’ll remember from the days of your childhood how your house used to make noises. If you got out of bed in the middle of the night for a glass of water, you probably heard them all the louder. Then you broke the world record for running from the kitchen to your bedroom, and hid under the covers.
The good news is, it doesn’t mean you’re haunted*. Homes make noises due to floorboards and pipes relaxing and contracting naturally. You don’t hear them so much during the day because there is more noise generally. However, a wiring fault can cause cooker rings to switch on unannounced. If you hear that telltale noise, it is worth checking, and asking an expert to check it out.
WWT #3: Your Smoke Alarm Triggers When Nothing’s On Fire
Sometimes, while cooking, your smoke alarm can go off. There is no way of stopping yourself feeling slightly judged at this point, but a sensitive smoke alarm can trigger even if no smoke is visible. Indeed, it doesn’t need to be smoke at all. If you shower with the door open, then even steam can trigger a smoke alarm. Which is inconvenient if you’re the only one in the house.
If these are the only times the smoke alarm goes off, then it’s fine. It’s better to have one that is too sensitive than one that does nothing. However, if it goes off when there is nothing that could be triggering it, you may need to replace the alarm. A smoke alarm with a fault could be a liability for the whole family. And not just from a “Boy Who Cried Wolf” point of view.
*Of course, it doesn’t mean you’re NOT haunted, either.
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