As autumn approaches, now is an excellent time to start thinking about your residence’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season is underway, the Centers for Disease Control says the likelihood of carbon monoxide poisoning builds.
Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a result of combustion your gas furnace depends on to add warmth to your house. When your furnace is working like it’s supposed to, the gas is correctly pushed outside of your residence. Cracks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to spill into your residence, where ongoing exposure can be fatal.
Despite the fact carbon monoxide poisoning is avoidable, the CDC says at least 430 people in the U.S. die from it each year. And another approximately 50,000 people visit the ER because of related issues, including headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can help your family is by organizing yearly maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, like your furnace and water heater, and getting a carbon monoxide detector. From plug-in to smart carbon monoxide detectors, there’s a model out there that fits for your residence and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, like the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it straightforward to stay on top of keeping your loved ones safe. They’re usually sold as duo carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can generally be synced with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other perks of having them in your residence:
- Alerts you that there’s a problem through voice notifications, in addition to alerts on your phone.
- Reveals the problem spot, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be silenced from your phone.
- Automatically tests its sensors and batteries and reveals findings through a useful report on your phone.
- Notifies you of low batteries with an alert on your phone, not a screeching chirp in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the brand.
The only downside of having Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the cost. These detectors are sometimes much higher-priced than their plug-in or battery-powered counterparts. But they also include many useful and important features you won’t receive in a non-smart device.
When you’re installing a new device, it’s important to learn where to put carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency encourages installing a carbon monoxide detector around five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is since carbon monoxide can rise with warm air.
We advise installing a detector on each floor of your residence, as well as outside bedrooms. You’ll want to be sure the noise will wake you up.
Battery-Powered and Plug-In Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Plug-in and battery-powered carbon monoxide detectors are the most reasonable. A few of the most popular types are Kidde carbon monoxide detectors and First Alert carbon monoxide detectors.
But they also have limited features that don’t link with your phone or smart home devices. They typically have a digital display and test button, which you’ll have to remember to use.
The National Fire Protection Association suggests testing hardwired carbon monoxide alarms once a month. Battery-powered detectors that don’t plug in should be tested every week. If you’re wondering how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s pretty simple. Use the button to be certain your detector is functioning.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to change the backup battery at least every year. If it’s battery-powered, you’ll want to change it once a month to skip the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re noticing a chirp or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping intermittently, it often signals it has a low battery. Or, it’s getting to the end of its life. How long carbon monoxide detectors work depends on the brand you own. In general, it’s around 5–10 years, but make sure to review instructions from your system’s manufacturer.
If you’re confused about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s likely due to the fact it’s detecting hazardous concentration of carbon monoxide. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off with continuous, loud beeping, leave your home as quickly as possible and contact 911.
Now is a good time to ensure your carbon monoxide detector is functioning like it’s supposed to before heating season begins. If you need to set up furnace maintenance or you’re interested in upgrading to smart carbon monoxide detectors, the Experts at Service Experts Commercial HVAC can provide support. Get in touch with us at 289-201-2346 today and we’ll help you pick the ideal carbon monoxide detector for your home.