What is carbon monoxide?
Carbon monoxide, also known as CO, is a deadly gas that cannot be detected by humans. It is invisible, has no smell, taste or color and is produced when fuels, such as gas, oil or gasoline, burn incompletely.
Why is carbon monoxide so dangerous?
Carbon monoxide is dangerous because it is a toxic gas that, when inhaled, is absorbed by the body and replaces oxygen in the blood. As a result, your body does not get enough oxygen to function properly. When you ingest too much of this gas, it can lead to unconsciousness, brain damage and even death.
Carbon monoxide is invisible and has no smell or taste. Because of this, it cannot be detected without a special meter. Therefore, it is important to always have a working carbon monoxide detector in the home to alert when an elevated concentration of carbon monoxide is present.
Where do I place my carbon monoxide detector?
It is recommended that you place a carbon monoxide detector on every floor. The best places are near potential sources of carbon monoxide. These include kitchens, garages and laundry rooms.
Because the gas only rises and falls by mixing with air around it, you can't just hang a carbon monoxide detector from the ceiling and expect it to work efficiently.
A room with a heating source.
If there is a heat source in the room, such as a heater or stove, it is important to place the carbon monoxide detector close to this source. This is important because these can be potential sources of carbon monoxide if they are not functioning properly.
The hot air from these appliances causes carbon monoxide to rise. Therefore, place the CO detector as high as possible. Best is the ceiling. This also applies to pitched roofs.
Make sure there is at least 30 centimeters of space between the carbon monoxide detector and surrounding walls.
A room without a heating source.
If there is no heating source in a room, it is still important to install a carbon monoxide detector in this room. Carbon monoxide can still be present in the air due to, for example, a leak in the drain line of a heater or other gas-fired appliances in a neighboring room.
In rooms without a heating source, carbon monoxide barely rises. It is therefore advisable to hang carbon monoxide detectors at breathing height (about 1.5 meters in height).
In bedrooms, hang the CO detector at pillow/sleeping height.
What to do when the carbon monoxide detector goes off?
Do you have a carbon monoxide detector in your home and it goes off? If so, leave the house immediately and wait outside. Call the fire department to help identify and fix the problem. It is important that anyone who was in the house get checked for signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, fatigue and confusion.
Other tips for hanging a carbon monoxide detector
- Be sure not to hang a carbon monoxide detector behind objects. Examples include curtains or closets.
- Also make sure you don't place the detector near air intakes.
Unfortunately, many people are unaware of the dangers of carbon monoxide and do not have a carbon monoxide detector in their home. Because carbon monoxide is odorless and invisible, it is essential to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home to be alerted in time to any emissions.
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