As fall approaches, now is an excellent time to start thinking about your home’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season begins, the Centers for Disease Control says the likelihood of carbon monoxide poisoning increases.
Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a product of combustion your gas furnace relies on to add warmth to your residence. When your heating is operating properly, the gas is safely moved outside of your home. Cracks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to appear into your residence, where ongoing exposure can be fatal.
Regardless of the fact carbon monoxide poisoning is preventable, 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 ER due to related symptoms, such as headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can protect your loved ones is by setting up annual maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, like your furnace and water heater, and getting a carbon monoxide detector. From plug-in to smart carbon monoxide detectors, there’s a model available that fits for your residence and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, including the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it easy to stay on top of keeping your loved ones safe. They’re often offered as combined carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can usually be used with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other advantages of installing them in your house:
- Alerts you that there’s something wrong through voice notifications, in addition to alerts on your phone.
- Locates the problem room, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be quieted from your phone.
- Automatically tests its sensors and batteries and reveals findings through a comprehensive report on your phone.
- Notifies you of dying batteries with an alert on your phone, not a loud noise in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the kind.
The only problem with installing Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the price. These detectors are often much pricier than their plug-in or battery-powered counterparts. But they also offer many beneficial and important features you can’t get in a non-smart device.
When you’re installing a new device, it’s vital to understand where to attach carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency suggests putting a carbon monoxide detector at least five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is because carbon monoxide can rise with hot air.
We recommend installing a detector on each floor of your home, as well as outside bedrooms. You’ll want to be certain the alarm will wake you up.
Battery-Powered and Plug-In Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Plug-in and battery-powered carbon monoxide detectors are the most reasonable. A few of the most popular styles are Kidde carbon monoxide detectors and First Alert carbon monoxide detectors.
But they also have restricted features that don’t work with your phone or smart home devices. They tend to have a digital display and test button, which you’ll have to remember to use.
The National Fire Protection Association advises testing hardwired carbon monoxide alarms every month. Battery-powered detectors that don’t plug in need to be tested weekly. If you’re concerned about how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s fairly easy. Depress the button to make sure your detector is functioning.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to swap the backup battery at least annually. If it’s battery-powered, you’ll want to swap it once a month to skip the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re getting a chirp or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping more frequently, it usually 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. Typically, it’s around 5–10 years, but make sure to review instructions from your specific manufacturer.
If you’re concerned about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s usually due to the fact it’s picking up hazardous amounts of carbon monoxide. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off with continuous, loud beeping, leave your house immediately and call 911.
Now is a good time to confirm your carbon monoxide detector is running like it’s supposed to before heating season arrives. 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 assist you. Contact us at 403-279-5760 today and we’ll help you find the best carbon monoxide detector for your residence.