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Fire in house - my Friday the 13th!

May 14th, 2005, 09:31 AM
Here's the history: My husband has been remodeling our home for I don't know how many years now. His latest project is the living room, which he tore up in April 0f 2004. He has been working on it sporadically since then, but will go for months without touching it. He recently tore out part of the wall that the heater is on - we live in a house that was built in about 1890 and has a rising air furnace. The heater originally had a small grate on either side of the wall. Now we have two small grates with a big hole in between - in the hole are the 'radiators' that provide the heat. We've been blocking off the living room with a piece of paneling and blocking the heater with a piece of plywood. Sometimes we have placed the plywood flat on top of the heater to allow access to the living room if we are going back and forth hauling groceries, etc. Anyway, yesterday morning my husband layed the plywood down on the heater and left it there. He leaves at about 5:20 am, so I was still in bed. I woke up a few minutes later thinking that I could smell smoke - when I opened my eyes it looked like my bedroom was hazy. I got up and went to investigate - the plywood had caught on fire and the fire was moving up the wall!! :eek: The dining room was so thick with smoke that all I could see was the flames! I got the extinguisher, opened the back door to get some of the smoke out and got the fire put out. Now I have burnt carpet on both sides of the heater, a burnt wall and smoke smell in every nook and cranny of my home. Not to mention my poor lizards who had to breathe that smoke in until I got it put out!! The smoke detector in that room had been unhooked because it always went off when the heater came on.

Here's my rant - if my bleeping husband would've quit f***ing around with that room, this would've never happened! I have been telling him for months that I am tired of being stuffed into the dining room - that I really want my living room back but he doesn't seem to be in any big hurry to get it done! I hate this house anyway, (we don't own it, his mother does) and after I got the fire put out and wasn't running on pure instinct anymore, it dawned on me that I could've just taken the lizards outside with me - waited til the fire was going good and then called 911. Problem would've been solved! :evil: It wasn't until after I finally got to work yesterday that I realized what day it was!!

May 14th, 2005, 09:36 AM
Im glad everyone is safe and sound.

maybe now it will put a fire under your hubbies butt to get the room done for you [pun intended]

I hope the damage isnt too expensive tho.

maybe febreeze will help the smoke smell?

Ive also been using Oust for anything that smells oddly to me, it seems to get rid of smells, i dont know about smoke tho since its quite a strong and linguring smell


May 14th, 2005, 09:42 AM
I have already used almost a full bottle of febreeze - and washed down everything with lysol (had to wash down everything because of the mess the extinguisher leaves behind), put baking soda on the carpets, put little bowls of vanilla extract around to absorb the odor - and have all my windows open.

May 15th, 2005, 08:17 AM
Tell him to get the living room done THIS WEEKEND, and if he doesn't, you're going to let the house burn to the ground. Was he even remotely apologetic?

You could have been killed by the carbon monoxide in the smoke!!!

Reconnect that detector.

May 15th, 2005, 09:44 AM
No, he wasn't apologetic, although he was amazed that I actually put it out. He knows how much I hate this house. He told me that his mom had already told him quite some time ago that he could have a normal furnace put it instead of this radiant heat thing that has to be 100 years old. I didn't know that she had agreed to that expense! I told him that he needed to get this room done - PRONTO - and he said that he thought it was fun to drag it out for a couple more years. I know that he's kidding - but you never know how much is a joke and how much is serious. I took some pictures of the damage - which was actually pretty superficial - with my normal camera. I'll post a couple when I get the film developed. The work that still needs done will definitely take more than a weekend.

Cactus Flower
May 15th, 2005, 01:57 PM
Hmm. I would begin serving partially completed meals, partially completed laundry, and partially aerobics ;)........until the room is done.

*Giggles* :evil:

I'm very glad no one was hurt in the fire.

May 15th, 2005, 03:31 PM
First of all,I am happy you are ok,it could have been a disaster..
Secondly get rid of that old furnace,if your MIL is willing to pay for a new one,get one!!
I started taking matters into my own hands,when hubby was procrastinating,it made him feel sooo embarassed when friends complimented me on a job well done,whatever a man can do,you can,unless it's too heavy.
Start doing little things,maybe hubby will be shamed into fixing that room....
I hope your lizards are ok!

May 16th, 2005, 12:12 PM
The lizards seem fine (thank god they are hardy creatures!) although I watched them like a hawk all day on Friday and Saturday to make sure that they were breathing ok, eating like they should, etc.

I have already looked into getting a different furnace, the problem is that there isn't a space under the house from the kitchen to the back porch of my house which means that no ducting can be run into those rooms. I have been trying to get a grate for the heater to at least cover that up, but so far I can't find one. I guess I'll have to have one custom made.

I have to say that although I love my husband, this is one thing that I definitely hate about him - he procrastinates terribly when it comes to the house. I am seriously thinking about calling that TV show - In a fix - where they come in to fix the things that homeowners screw up. I'd get to go to the Spa for a few days while they made him work his a** off to get it done! At the very least, his bedroom privileges are cut off indefinitely! :evil: Maybe that will hit him in the right spot!

May 18th, 2005, 08:15 AM
Kandy you have the right idea about the bedroom priviledges, LOL I am still laughing. Maybe now he can use the right head to think with. Some days I am soooooo glad I am female, must be terribly frustrating to have to figure out which head to use for thinking.
I think writing to In A Fix would be a great idea............... they really will do a fantastic job and teach hubby a lesson.
Around here my hubby does do a lot of work( in the yard) but when it comes to the house it is all me. I am just really lucky to have a dad who is a carpenter extrodinaire. He can do pretty much anything which makes things easy for me.
I`ll post some pics of the house and the things he has helped me to renovate, it is pretty amazing how talented he is and how he can get things to look just like they did in my head.

I think if you go to the TLC website they can help you with the In A Fix thing........... it wouldn`t hurt to give it a try, you get a room completed and they foot the bill ( at least that is how I understand it)
Glad that you and your critters are alright. That could have been so tragic.
I am going to do some research on how to get rid of the smoke smell.......

May 18th, 2005, 09:06 AM
I read that this will take the smoke smell (from a fire) out .
Place several pieces of white bread soaked in vinegar in dishes around the house, it is supposed to absorb the smoke smell. Once the bread is dried out toss it and it should take the odor away.

I have attached a pic or two of my dad`s handy work to show off his talents. I love having him two houses away! :)

May 18th, 2005, 09:07 AM
I love the look of barn wood.