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Think Carbon Monoxide Detectors Aren’t Necessary? Think Again

Did you know that carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is estimated to be responsible for more than 500 accidental deaths and 5,000 injuries every year? CO can cause low-level poisoning that has symptoms similar to the flu, but exposure to higher levels can cause death or severe brain damage. In fact, CO is the largest cause of death by gas poisoning every year. That’s why it’s imperative to have working carbon monoxide detectors in your Central Florida home.

Carbon monoxide is a by-product of combustion, but in a safe household, those fumes are safely vented outside the house. However, a malfunctioning gas-fueled furnace or water heater may emit CO into your home. Or a family member might accidentally leave the car running in your garage.

Carbon monoxide is a tasteless, colorless and odorless gas; it is completely undetectable by human senses. If it did leak into your house and you had no working carbon monoxide detectors, how would you even know? Victims of carbon monoxide poisoning are often completely oblivious that they are being poisoned while they are sleeping or watching TV. If they are lucky, they will catch on to the symptoms of low-level poisoning and leave the house before a fatal accident occurs. Carbon monoxide detectors are designed to prevent this tragedy from ever occurring.

Most experts advise homeowners to install a carbon monoxide detector near the main sleeping area, and on each level of a multi-story home. They should be placed head-high or higher, since CO will rise with warm air. Don’t install one within 15 feet of a gas-fueled furnace or water heater, however, since trace emissions of CO might prompt a false alarm. Many people will also install a CO detector in an attached garage or near the door to the attached garage. It’s imperative to check the batteries on a regular basis, and replace them when necessary.

If you’re searching for more information on home comfort and safety, please contact us at Rinaldi’s Energy Solutions. We take pride in our more than 44 years of service to the Orlando area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Orlando, Florida and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about Carbon Monoxide Detectors  and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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