The time is now! Let’s talk about carbon monoxide (CO) safety. November is #CarbonMonoxideAwarenessMonth. This gas is odorless, tasteless, and invisible which is why it’s called the silent killer. Each year CO poisoning kills more than 400 people nationally.
One concern we have at Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing is people seem to focus only on furnaces when they talk about carbon monoxide safety. Everyone needs to remember ANY fuel-burning device creates carbon monoxide including but not limited to:
- Wood-burning fireplaces
- Wood stoves (including pellet stoves)
- Gas & oil boilers
- Gas & oil furnaces
- Water heaters
When you breathe in carbon monoxide it displaces the oxygen in your blood. When the oxygen levels get too low there is damage to muscles, organs, and the brain. It’s important to know the warning signs. According to people who have survived CO poisoning, the symptoms are a little bit like having the flu:
- Physical weakness
- Chest pain
If carbon monoxide poisoning is suspected, move the victim into the fresh air and immediately call 9-1-1.
Carbon monoxide safety starts with annual inspections in your Waterford, MI home by the professionals from Kotz. We encourage you to take all commonsense precautions, but this is not a DIY task. It takes a pro to spot some of the most common sources of carbon monoxide:
- Cracked heat exchangers on furnaces
- Leaking seams
- Cracks in exhaust pipes
- Incomplete burning
Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing will also test the air for the presence of carbon monoxide when doing your heating system inspection.
Ideally, the team at Kotz would like to see CO detectors in every Waterford, MI house. There should be one on each floor of the house and near each bedroom. If you have an attached garage, there should be a detector near the door into the house. A vehicle left idling in the garage can quickly fill the home with CO gas, potentially endangering your home’s occupants.
Take carbon monoxide safety one step further by purchasing a CO monitor. Detectors only sound an alarm when the CO levels are dangerously high. A monitor measures the level of CO gas constantly, so you are aware of the level increases. Research indicates long-term exposure to carbon monoxide at non-lethal levels can still cause health problems.
Count on Kotz
Use #CarbonMonoxideAwarenessMonth to practice good carbon monoxide safety. Call Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing now to schedule an appointment or learn more about CO detectors and monitors in your Waterford, MI home. Like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more great information.