Geek dad busts teenage daughter’s party

A self-confessed ‘geek’ accidently busted his teenage daughter holding a party in their family home in Adelaide, while he was 800 km away in Geelong.

David Rowetel was interstate with his wife, his kids were staying elsewhere and his home was supposed to be vacant. But while out to dinner, David decided to check his home’s electricity use remotely using his 3G smartphone.

“How could he do that? Who measures power from across the country?”

In David’s account of his story on his website, he wrote: “I knew it was very hot in Adelaide that day (40 C) and I wondered if this would affect my power consumption, for example an increased duty cycle on the fridge. I am just that sort of power-geek.”

David had installed a Fluksometer, a wi-fi device that measures household power using a sensor that you clip into your fuse box.

Geek dad busts daughter

Photo by Jake Miller/Flickr

When David checked, he was surprised to see 1000 W had been used since 1.00pm that day – which is about what his air-conditioning uses. He also noticed that at around 7.00pm the power jumped by a few hundred watts, “just like the lights had gone on, or perhaps the TV”.

He called his 16-year-old daughter to see if she knew anything about “this phantom power problem”.

“My gut feel was to call my mother and ask her to visit my home but I thought I’d give [my daughter] the benefit of the doubt,” David wrote. “She said that she was at a friend’s house but would go around and check my house. She was not keen on using her grandmother to resolve the issue. Exactly 30 minutes later I received a text from her saying the air con and TV was on but she had switched them off.”

“Kids will have to fight for their right to party, again”

David returned to Adelaide the next day to a very tidy home, but there were a few tell-tale signs of a party. His daughter eventually came clean, and revealed there’d been a mass exodus after his call – a line of teenagers fleeing for three blocks. She said: “All my friends who didn’t know Dad said ‘How could he do that? Who measures power from across the country’? Those that did know Dad said ‘He knows. Don’t worry!’”

Fluksometer founder, Bart Meerssche, is amused at the role his invention has played in this family ‘drama’: “Kids will have to fight for their right to party, again. I’m thinking of adding a party button to the Flukso, to help them out,” he joked.

Read David’s entertaining account of the night he ruined his daughter’s sneaky party





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