How to Avoid the Deadly Effects of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

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Avoiding the Effects of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon monoxide poisoning is lethal and virtually undetectable and a very real threat that strikes in the comfort and safety of our homes. Every year, 30,000 people will fall victim to the effects of carbon monoxide poisoning and 500 of these will die. Worst still, these figures only reflect the situation within the United States. 

Keep yourself safe from the deadly effects of carbon monoxide poisoning by following the advice in this article. 

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Check Your HVAC Vents for Proper Airflow

Throughout the year there will be times when furniture is moved around and rearranged. Whenever a project like this is undertaken, take some time to address the HVAC vents and ensure proper airflow through your home. This will ensure that all dust produced by the project is quickly eliminated from the home as well.

Blocked vents are a problem. Not only are they completely useless because they prevent air from flowing in and out of the duct system as intended, but they also reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system and can cause your energy expenses to go through the roof. This type of obstruction can cause your furnace to overheat, and this damages internal components and shortens the service life of your HVAC unit considerably.  

Take the time to check the vents of your home to ensure that they are flowing as intended. Make sure the return registers, where the air is pulled in, are also kept clean and clear. 

Install Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detectors and Alarms

A carbon monoxide detector is much like a smoke detector, with one obvious difference. Instead of alerting the home’s occupants to smoke and the risk of fire, carbon monoxide detectors will raise the alarm when this noxious gas is detected in your home. If you do not already have one of these installed, this would be a good time to do that. 

Don’t forget that CO is completely undetectable to the senses. It is a tasteless, odourless, invisible gas and still highly toxic. It is important to keep your home and all who dwell within safe from this considerable threat.  

Make sure that the directions provided with your carbon monoxide smoke alarms are followed with attention to detail and precision. If you are unsure of your capacity to perform this task, have an HVAC professional from JD Swallow perform the installation work. You can ask them for any more information on the carbon monoxide detector. 

CO symptoms

 

How to Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

According to the instructions provided with your carbon monoxide detector, your carbon monoxide detectors should be checked for functionality once a month. If you are unsure how to accomplish this task, refer to the instructions that came with the device. Alternatively, you could have the device tested by your HVAC professionals at JD Swallow. 

Schedule Regular Maintenance

It is important to have your HVAC unit professionally maintained. All the heaters, furnaces, and heating elements should be regularly inspected and maintained to reduce the chances of generating this poisonous gas. 

The fumes created by these devices when they are not functioning properly can cause considerable harm. If not properly maintained, they can even cause life-threatening consequences. One of the most important preventative measures that you can take will be to have all these devices regularly inspected by a professional. The professional carrying out this task will be able to highlight any potential threats. 

Proper maintenance of your HVAC, furnaces, heaters, dryers, and other appliances that feature heating elements also greatly increases the longevity of these products and prevents their early retirement in a landfill. If you notice anything unusual happening within your HVAC system, call in a professional to inspect the unit and make sure there is no threat of carbon monoxide poisoning. 

Replace Your Batteries Twice a Year

Your carbon monoxide detectors will not function without power and will be completely useless. With this in mind, it is important to have the batteries changed 2 times a year. Adding this to the list of duties at daylight savings times is a good idea. 

Do Not Use Your Gas Oven to Heat Your Home

While it seems like it would make sense, it is a bad idea to try and heat your home with your gas stove. An overworked oven runs the risk of explosion. Ovens are not designed to heat the home. Furthermore, the carbon monoxide fumes that are produced by the oven will be sent throughout the home. 

carbon monoxide detector

Be Cautious of Space Heaters that Burn Fuel

Space heaters also carry the risk of flooding the air with deadly carbon monoxide gas. These devices must be regularly serviced as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Space heaters account for well over 33% of all household fires. Don’t forget to shut off all space heaters if you will leave them unattended for any longer than 5 minutes. 

Carbon Monoxide is a serious threat to life and health. Many of the appliances upon which our lives and convenience depend produce this deadly gas. Without preventative measures, your home could be a risk. Keep your home safe by carefully applying the advice in this article.

For all of your home heating, cooling and ventilation needs, contact the professionals at JD Swallow, we’re happy to help.

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