Carbon monoxide is a very poisonous gas with no taste, no colour and no smell. Bad ventilation to a boiler can lead to the production of this gas.When there is insufficient oxygen the burning process can produce very dangerous, carbon monoxide rather than the normal, and far less toxic, carbon dioxide. With high standards of boiler servicing and strict ventilation regulations the number of people killed by Carbon Monoxide has reduced to 30 people each year although many more are seriously injured.

What are the dangers associated with Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?

If you suspect, carbon monoxide poisoning act without delay and take great care if at any time there are one or  more indicators of carbon monoxide absorption in your family. , one oxide is dangerous and the guys are not throw a game if you get on the wrong side of it so do not wait if in any way you suspect it is present. Be decisive and look after your household straight away. Any member of the family can be affected by carbon monoxide regardless of their age. Frequently pets will be harmed in a very similar way as humans can be.

How could I check if I suspect my home has a carbon monoxide problem?

If your gas boiler or gas appliances have indications of discoloration on their surface or on the walls near them you may be seeing some of the results of poor ventilation and production of excess waste gases. Looking at the pilot light can give you a good first indication as the typical well maintained flame in a boiler will be blue, rather than the yellow which is exhibited when there is a problem. Changes in the colour of the pilot light indicate that all is not well with the boiler and it should be serviced as soon as time permits.

What actions can I take to reduce the chances of Carbon Monoxide poisoning?

Bad ventilation resulting in lack of oxygen leads to the production of poisonous carbon monoxide. Gas appliance combustion problems can be avoided by adopting a regular appliance servicing schedule by trained appliance engineers. Any engineer you contract to service your gas appliances should be CORGI-registered which will ensure that they have the training required to complete the task to the required standards. You can now easily purchase electronic, battery powered, carbon monoxide detectors. These outputs a very loud alarm if they detect low levels of carbon monoxide. Provision of the recommended ventilation to gas appliances is essential and you should regularly inspect any ventilation vents to ensure that the flow of air can be maintained.

Make a note to frequently inspect external events to ensure that there aren’t any plans which have grown over the course of the year and started to block the event. If your home has a chimney to provide appliance ventilation look out for birds nests in the spring as the creation of a nest in a chimney which is not being used in the warm weather could completely block the ventilation when required in the winter. To help you understand what the problem is the smoke alarm will make a different sound from the carbon monoxide alarm. Ensure that all of the members of your household are fully aware of the different noises that each of these alarms makes in order that they can take the appropriate action upon hearing them.

Are there any the visible symptoms show when someone has carbon monoxide poisoning?

The symptoms which can frequently appear similar to other illnesses, for example: –
– frequent headaches
– instability
– fatigue
– billiousness

The similarity to other illnesses presents a problem and can lead to delay in taking the appropriate action. If you have any gas appliances, such as a fire or boiler, it is best to act quickly and avoid risk. Open the windows and ensure everyone goes outside then switch off the appliance and guess an expert opinion from a “gas safe registered” engineer. If you notice symptoms such as these when you have gas appliances in the home, stop using the appliance without delay, increase ventilation to the rooms, take any inhabitants outside and ensure that your gas appliances are inspected by a CORGI registered gas engineer.

When I buy a detector what should I look for?

Preferred CO detectors should contain an audible alarm and be have British Standards certification. When selecting a carbon monoxide detector ensure that you have one which has a long battery life, say five years, and a shrill easily heard a lot. There are some paper based detectors which are impregnated with chemicals that they act upon contact with the gas. A battery-powered model is better as the alarm is audible rather than requiring you to look at the paper to see a change in colour.  Chemical detectors have 6 month lifetimes and they need to be replaced often increasing the real cost of these devices. Most importantly the lack of an audible alarm means that this type of detector will not wake you is there is an excess of carbon monoxide produced when you are asleep at night. Both types of alarms are now commonly available in DIY stores.

Are you able to purchase carbon monoxide detectors?

Carbon monoxide detectors can be effective in preventing incidences of carbon monoxide poisoning. In recent years there are several types of detectors becoming available for purchase on the high street. Carbon monoxide detectors trigger an alarm based on a buildup of the gas over a period of time. Smoke detectors have been around for a long time and carbon monoxide detectors are now becoming as reliable as these trusted devices.  Your best protection against exposure to carbon monoxide is the regular servicing of your gas burning appliances. A CO detector will only ever be a backup measure.

How to fit a carbon monoxide detector

Carbon monoxide kills through the ongoing absorption of the gas and the gradual reduction of the body’s ability to absorb oxygen. Fitting carbon monoxide detectors can give your family early warning of rising CO levels so that they can escape to fresh air. Carbon monoxide detectors will raise the alarm early, at co ncentrationsof the gas lower than before a typical, healthy adult would display symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. Whilst smoke detectors should be installed high on the wall or near the ceiling a carbon monoxide detector can be installed lower down. Carbon Monoxide alarms should be positioned so that all the inhabitants of the house can hear it from their bedroom when asleep, you need the alarm to wake you up quickly should it be triggered in the middle of the night.


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