Being exposed to carbon monoxide (CO) in your home, even for just a short amount of time, can be very hazardous to you and your family, even potentially lethal. It’s important to take precautions against CO buildup, and know what to do in case this happens in your Fresno area home.
What Is Carbon Monoxide?
Any appliance or engine that burns fuel, whether gasoline, natural gas, propane, fuel oil, wood, charcoal or kerosene, can produce carbon monoxide. It occurs when the fuel is not completely burned by combustion. The gas itself is colorless and odorless, making detection by humans, in the absence of a detection device, impossible until symptoms of CO poisoning are already present.
Where Might CO Build Up?
You would most commonly find CO buildup in places near combustion appliances such as your furnace or water heater, which get little ventilation. Carbon monoxide can also enter your home through gaps and openings in the common wall separating an attached garage and your living spaces. CO buildup itself usually will not occur in a bedroom or living room, but it absolutely can spill out into those areas and affect anyone in the home.
What Can be Done to Prevent It?
Making sure your combustion appliances are burning all of their fuel, and the properly exhausting any fumes and gasses, is the best way to stop CO concentrations from building up. Have a technician check out your furnace, water heater and gas stove to make sure they are working properly. In addition, installing a carbon monoxide detector on every floor of your home, where everyone can hear it, can alert you if CO is building up, even if you think everything is working fine. Low-level alarms are available if you are worried about extremely low concentrations, which can be harmful to young children, those who are ill, and pregnant women.
If you want to know more about the dangers of carbon monoxide, or if you have any other questions about the air quality in your home, please contact us at Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning. Our company has nearly 45 years of experience dealing with indoor air issues in the Fresno area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Fresno, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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