How to Test for Carbon Monoxide in Your Delaware Home
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a natural byproduct of combustion, but just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it’s good for your health. In fact, this colorless, odorless gas can be fatal in concentrations as low as 4,000 parts per million, or four tenths of 1 percent. This is why Wilmington’s city code requires that all households have CO detectors installed to test for carbon monoxide.
Carbon monoxide can be produced by any of the following household appliances:
- Combustion furnaces
- Gas or oil hot water heaters
- Gas or oil boilers
- Gas stoves and ovens
- Kerosene heaters
If your home contains well-maintained appliances, your rate of CO production should be low – well within safety limits.
Additionally, if your home has a healthy ventilation system, carbon monoxide should be filtered outdoors where it can disperse harmlessly. However, if your appliances malfunction or your home is sealed without ventilation, you risk building up CO in your house.
If this happens, the only reliable test for carbon monoxide is a CO detector with good batteries. The initial symptoms of CO poisoning mimic the flu and allergies, so it can be difficult to know if you’ve been exposed. If your carbon monoxide detector goes off, move outside immediately and call emergency services.
If you have reason to suspect that a gas appliance is malfunctioning, don’t hesitate to get it checked out. Furthermore, you should always refer to safety instructions on all fuel-burning appliances. For example, you should never run a generator indoors or in a place with poor air circulation.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues – especially HVAC and plumbing issues – so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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