Virtually any home in our Kansas City area can have a dangerous level of carbon monoxide. Though it may never happen, the potential is there. Carbon monoxide is the product of any type of fossil fuel that has not completed the combustion process. A clogged flue, leaking gas line, faulty gas burner or car running in a garage on a cold morning can lead to an accumulation of carbon monoxide.
Carbon monoxide detectors are common in most of our homes. If you think you’ll never need them, don’t take the chance. Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless and can be discovered only by a detector. When you install one or have one installed, there some things to bear in mind. Here are a few:
- Placement – Never place a carbon monoxide detector in a bathroom or other high-humidity area. It creates false alarms and leads to premature failure. Place them high on a wall or on the ceiling. Each room in a home needs one but, each bedroom is a must, at minimum. Never locate them close to fireplaces, gas stoves or other combustion devices.
- They Will Not Detect Smoke – Smoke detectors are a separate device from carbon monoxide detectors. There are combination detectors which do both but never rely on one to do the job of the other.
- Test Frequently – Each time the seasons change is a good time to test your carbon monoxide detectors. If you use only the battery-operated type, keep fresh batteries around. If it is wired-in, make sure the battery back-up is operational.
- Digital Readouts – Most detectors use sound to alert the home’s occupants. Types for the hearing-impaired have digital reads and visual alerts.
- Monitored Devices – There are devices that send an alert to a monitoring center by being integrated into your home or office security system. This is a most effective way to alerts others when the home or office is not occupied or in the case of a resident, everyone is sleeping and has been overcome by the gas.
Your friends at Overland Park Heating and Cooling want all our Kansas neighbors to have a safe and comfortable home. If you need additional information on carbon monoxide detectors, contact us. We’ll help you determine what’s best for your situation.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information, click here to download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.