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Carbon Monoxide: Preventing Invisible Danger

Carbon Monoxide: Preventing Invisible Danger By Marianne Salina
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Carbon Monoxide is released from any device or appliance that uses gas, oil, wood, or any other fuel source. It is an odorless and colorless gas and when it exceeds a safe carbon monoxide level, it can be toxic or deadly.

While most appliances have ventilation devices that monitor the release of carbon monoxide, sometimes these get clogged and the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning becomes a threat. Fortunately, carbon monoxide poisoning is a preventable danger if you follow specific precautions.

How to Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Because carbon monoxide can be so difficult to monitor, monitoring your heating appliances and maintaining proper ventilation are good first steps. Additionally, have a professional inspector conduct a thorough examination of your home and central heating system. A professional will check all areas where carbon monoxide poisoning might occur, including chimney blockages or cracks in the water heater.

Carbon Monoxide Alarm

 The other way to ensure a safe carbon monoxide level in your home is to install a carbon monoxide alarm. These devices generally cost between $30 and $50 at a hardware store, and are the most efficient way to detect toxic gas before health effects occur. There are a few key things to look for when selecting a carbon monoxide alarm:
  • Look for a carbon monoxide alarm with laboratory certification.
  • The best alarms are powered by a household current but are backed up by a battery in case of power outage.
  • An alarm with a digital read is a quick way to determine safe carbon monoxide level.


Proper inspection and a carbon monoxide alarm are quick and inexpensive ways to maintain a safe carbon monoxide level in your home, and are the most effective safeguards against this deadly gas.

Sources

Indoor Air Quality
Web MD

About the Author
Marianne Salina is a freelance writer and columnist in Spokane, Washington. She graduated with honors upon receiving her B.A. in Literature and Creative Writing from UC Santa Cruz.



*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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