One of the joys of the Sandwich Generation is that you get a lot of experience in troubleshooting. Of course, with elderly seniors near or far, it's usually troubleshooting an issue they are having in or with their home, as opposed to troubleshooting kids and grandkids over a tough tech issue or the REALLY tough matters of the heart. 🙂 So I'm quite happy to be dealing mostly with home and house issues.
Last week, though, I definitely had a mystery – it was the case of the mysterious no-longer-working electric recliner rocker. Fortunately, this rocker is local for me – right down the stairs and to the left of my bedroom. I went and sat down in my mom's rocker, picked up the remote with its blue lights brightly shinging, and pushed the button. Sure enough. Nothing! Absolutely NOTHING!
Then I checked to be sure all the wires were plugged in where they belonged – and they were. Just as I was thinking I would have to call the store to schedule a service visit, I picked up the big black square thing attached to the wires and, since it was so big, I turned it over. Lo and behold, it had a sliding cover. I opened that and found two 9-volt batteries. Who knew! I replaced them and it worked. Voila! Right? Not exactly. I did a bit more research and discovered those were for the backup in case of a power outage. Replacing them certainly wouldn't fix the whole problem. It just meant that we were now working on battery backup.
However, in the process, I did move the surge suppressor the chair was plugged into. All of a sudden I realized there were no lights on it! I had checked that the chair was plugged into the suppressor properly. And I had checked the wall, or had I? That's definitely something easy to miss. After jiggling the plug firmly into the socket, we had REAL power again. Apparently, when my mom had moved a dresser, it had nudged it just enough. It "looked" plugged in but wasn't fully plugged in.
I was definitely glad that was a fairly easy problem to solve. And glad I had learned a few new "tricks of the trade." Namely:
When something stops working, don't just wiggle the plugs. Pull them out and plug them back in carefully. Make sure any lights that should go on DO go on.
Electric recliners may have battery back-ups in case of power outages. Best to change those batteries at the same time you change your smoke alarm batteries. (And if you have those cool new smoke alarms that do NOT need changing, change your recliner batteries at each time change, when MOST people have to change their smoke alarm batteries. 🙂 )
If all else fails or if you live long distance from your senior parent and their recliner, check online for the manual to help with troubleshooting.
And if even that doesn't work, give the store a call. If you bought it in the last year or less, it should be under warranty and they will be able to send a technician out. Even if it is out of warranty, they should be able to recommend a technician who can help you or your senior parent.
P.S. Check out this adorable pink recliner for kids! Bet I know a few dozen boomers and seniors (and younger) who would love this in an adult's version! For that matter, I definitely know a half dozen or more grandkids who would adore it!!! 🙂