Carbon Monoxide Dangers, Detection and Prevention
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 400 people die and more than 20,000 people make emergency room visits in the United States each year from unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning. Produced from the incomplete combustion of fuel, CO gas is difficult to detect because it is colorless, odorless and tasteless. Gas and oil furnaces, wood burning stoves, gas cooking stoves, lanterns and gas-powered generators are common household appliances that create this poisonous gas. Automobile and truck exhaust also produce CO gas. Running a car in a garage can create toxic levels within 10 minutes.
There is good news. There are several ways to protect your loved ones from CO poisoning. Installing CO detection alarms throughout your house and having your heating, ventilation and air conditioning system checked regularly can minimize the risk of suffering from the effects of poisonous gases.
What Is Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
Because people and animals cannot sense the presence of CO, they are not aware that they are breathing it in. The elderly, infants and those with heart or respiratory diseases are more likely to get sick. However, everyone is at risk of getting sick or dying from CO poisoning. Symptoms vary depending on the concentrations of the gas and an individual’s health.
- Fatigue or weakness
- Chest pain
- Impaired coordination
- Blurred vision
Tips to Prevent CO Poisoning
- Make sure to have your HVAC system tuned up twice a year. A qualified HVAC contractor will include a CO detection check during routine seasonal maintenance.
- Have chimneys, vents and gas water heaters inspected.
- Make sure all appliances are properly vented.
- Never use a portable generator indoors. Generators should be operated away from living spaces in well-ventilated areas.
- Install CO alarms.
- Know the symptoms of poisoning from CO gas. If you feel that you or your family are affected, go outside immediately, and call 911.
Importance of HVAC Seasonal Maintenance
Seasonal maintenance by a qualified HVAC contractor will check all elements of a system including testing for poisonous gases, examining electrical connections, changing the filter and lubricating all moving parts. A well-maintained system uses less energy and reduces wear and tear on components. Small problems can be identified and repaired before they become big, saving you both money and inconvenience.
Sinclair Heating, Cooling and Plumbing provides new installation, repair and maintenance on all makes and models of HVAC equipment. We have served customers in Lubbock, Texas, for more than 40 years. We are a Bryant Factory Authorized Dealer with NATE-certified technicians. Your indoor comfort and safety is our primary concern. Call (844) 749-2665 to find out more about our heating system maintenance services.