As cooler weather gets closer, now is an excellent time to begin thinking about your house’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season is underway, the Centers for Disease Control says the potential of carbon monoxide poisoning builds.
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 home. When your heating is operating like it’s supposed to, the gas is correctly moved outside of your home. Cracks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to seep into your residence, where prolonged exposure can be fatal.
Regardless of the fact carbon monoxide poisoning is escapable, the CDC says at least 430 people in the U.S. are killed by it annually. And another approximately 50,000 people are transported to the ER thanks to related ailments, like headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can help your loved ones is by setting up annual maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, such as your furnace and water heater, and installing a carbon monoxide detector. From plug-in to smart carbon monoxide detectors, there’s a solution on the market to work for your home and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, such as the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it easy to remain in control for keeping your family safe. They’re often sold as combined carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can typically be used with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other perks of using them in your house:
- Alerts you that there’s something wrong through voice notifications, as well as alerts on your phone.
- Reveals the problem room, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be quieted from your phone.
- Automatically checks its sensors and batteries and reveals findings through a comprehensive report on your phone.
- Notifies you of dead batteries with an alert on your phone, not a screeching noise in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the kind.
The only downside of using Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the expense. These detectors are often much more expensive than their plug-in or battery-powered counterparts. But they also offer many useful and valuable features you don’t find in a non-smart device.
When you’re buying a new device, it’s crucial to understand where to place carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends installing a carbon monoxide detector at least five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is because carbon monoxide can rise with heated air.
We encourage having a detector on each floor of your residence, especially outside bedrooms. You’ll want to make sure the beeping will wake you up.
Battery-Powered and Plug-In Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Plug-in and battery-powered carbon monoxide detectors are the most affordable. 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 recommends testing hardwired carbon monoxide alarms every month. Battery-powered detectors that don’t plug in need to be tested every week. If you’re wondering how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s more or less simple. Depress the button to make sure your detector is running.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to swap the backup battery at least annually. If it’s battery-powered, you’ll want to change it once a month to avoid the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re hearing a chirp or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping intermittently, it usually means it has a low battery. Or, it’s reaching the end of its life. How long carbon monoxide detectors run depends on the brand you own. Most often, it’s approximately 5–10 years, but make sure to read the instructions from your device’s manufacturer.
If you’re confused about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s likely 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 residence as quickly as possible and call 911.
Now is a great time to confirm your carbon monoxide detector is working as it should before heating season begins. If you need to request furnace maintenance or you’re interested in upgrading to smart carbon monoxide detectors, the Experts at Boehmers/Cronin Emery Home Services by Enercare can assist you. Get in touch with us at 519-804-1617 today and we’ll help you pick the best carbon monoxide detector for your residence.