As fall arrives, now is a good time to get started thinking about your house’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season starts, the Centers for Disease Control says the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning goes up.
Carbon monoxide is a hazardous gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a product of combustion your gas furnace uses to add warmth to your residence. When your furnace is operating as it should, the gas is safely transported outside of your house. Fractures in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to leak into your house, where ongoing exposure can be deadly.
Although carbon monoxide poisoning is escapable, the CDC says at least 430 people in the U.S. die from it annually. And another approximately 50,000 people visit the emergency room because of related issues, including headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can safeguard your home is by scheduling regular maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, including your furnace and water heater, and installing a carbon monoxide detector. From plug-in to smart carbon monoxide detectors, there’s an option available that matches for your residence and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, including the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it simple to keep on top of keeping your home safe. They’re often offered as dual-purpose carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can usually be synced with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other advantages of having them in your house:
- Alerts you that there’s an issue through voice notifications, plus alerts on your phone.
- Points out the problem room, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be silenced from your phone.
- Automatically tests its sensors and batteries and shares findings through a useful report on your phone.
- Warns you of dead batteries with an alert on your phone, not a screeching sound in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the type.
The only issue with using Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the expense. These detectors are frequently much higher-priced than their plug-in or battery-powered counterparts. But they also offer many helpful and worthy features you won’t get in a non-smart device.
When you’re installing a new device, it’s important to understand where to attach carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends placing a carbon monoxide detector approximately five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is because carbon monoxide can rise with heated air.
We advise having a detector on each floor of your house, especially 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. Some of the most popular styles are Kidde carbon monoxide detectors and First Alert carbon monoxide detectors.
But they also have limited features that don’t work with your phone or smart home devices. They usually 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 each month. Battery-powered detectors that don’t plug in should be tested weekly. If you’re unsure how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s more or less straightforward. Use the button to ensure your detector is working.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to swap the backup battery at least once a year. If it’s battery-powered, you’ll want to swap it once a month to bypass the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re getting that sound or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping more frequently, it often means it has a low battery. Or, it’s getting to the end of its life. How long carbon monoxide detectors run depends on the brand you own. In general, it’s around 5–10 years, but make sure to check instructions from your device’s manufacturer.
If you’re concerned about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s frequently due to the fact it’s detected dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off with continuous, loud beeping, leave your residence immediately and dial 911.
Now is a great time to check your carbon monoxide detector is working normally before heating season starts. If you need to set up furnace maintenance or you’re interested in upgrading to smart carbon monoxide detectors, the Experts at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning can help. Contact us at 239-908-6991 today and we’ll help you select the ideal carbon monoxide detector for your residence.