As fall approaches, now is a good time to start thinking about your house’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season begins, the Centers for Disease Control says the potential of carbon monoxide poisoning builds.
Carbon monoxide is a hazardous gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a product of combustion your gas furnace uses to heat your house. When your heater is working properly, the gas is correctly transported outside of your house. Breaks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to spill into your house, where long-term exposure can be lethal.
Although carbon monoxide poisoning is avoidable, the CDC says at least 430 people in the U.S. die from it annually. And another approximately 50,000 people are transported to the hospital thanks to related ailments, including headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can safeguard your loved ones is by scheduling yearly maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, like your furnace and water heater, and using 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, like the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it straightforward to remain in control for keeping your family safe. They’re often available as duo carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can usually be synced with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other benefits of using them in your residence:
- Alerts you that there’s a problem through voice notifications, plus alerts on your phone.
- Reveals the problem spot, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be shut off from your phone.
- Automatically checks its sensors and batteries and shares findings through a comprehensive report on your phone.
- Alerts you of low 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 problem with using Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the cost. These detectors are often much pricier than their plug-in or battery-powered counterparts. But they also include many beneficial and valuable features you don’t get in a non-smart device.
When you’re installing a new device, it’s important to know where to put carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends installing a carbon monoxide detector approximately five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is since carbon monoxide can rise with hot air.
We advise using a detector on each floor of your residence, especially outside bedrooms. You’ll want to be certain 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 fewer features that don’t link with your phone or smart home devices. They typically have a digital display and test button, which you’ll have to remember to use.
The National Fire Protection Association recommends testing hardwired carbon monoxide alarms once a month. Battery-powered detectors that don’t plug in need to be tested once a week. If you’re unsure how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s fairly simple. Use the button to make sure your detector is running.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to swap the backup battery at least every year. If it’s battery-powered, you’ll want to replace it once a month to avoid the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re getting a chirp or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping intermittently, it generally 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 have. In general, it’s approximately 5–10 years, but make sure to check instructions from your specific manufacturer.
If you’re wondering why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s usually due to the fact it’s picking up dangerous amounts of carbon monoxide. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off with constant, loud beeping, leave your house as quickly as possible and call 911.
Now is a good time to make sure your carbon monoxide detector is working as it should before heating season arrives. If you need to request furnace maintenance or you’re interested in upgrading to smart carbon monoxide detectors, the Experts at Freschi Service Experts can provide support. Get in touch with us at 925-384-1303 today and we’ll help you select the ideal carbon monoxide detector for your residence.