As cooler weather gets closer, now is a great time to get started thinking about your house’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season begins, the Centers for Disease Control says the likelihood of carbon monoxide poisoning goes up.
Carbon monoxide is a harmful gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a byproduct of combustion your gas furnace uses to add warmth to your residence. When your heating is running like it’s supposed to, the gas is safely transported outside of your home. Cracks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to appear into your residence, where prolonged exposure can be lethal.
Despite the fact carbon monoxide poisoning is preventable, the CDC says at least 430 people in the U.S. die from it every year. And another approximately 50,000 people visit the emergency room due to related symptoms, including headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can safeguard your family is by organizing regular maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, such as 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 house and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, like the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it easy to keep on top of keeping your loved ones safe. They’re often sold as combination carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can usually be linked with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other advantages of using them in your house:
- Alerts you that there’s an issue through voice notifications, plus alerts on your phone.
- Reveals the problem area, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be quieted from your phone.
- Automatically reviews 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 chirp in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the brand.
The only downside of getting 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 provide many beneficial and important features you can’t receive in a non-smart device.
When you’re getting a new device, it’s vital to learn where to attach carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency encourages installing a carbon monoxide detector at least five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is since carbon monoxide can rise with warm air.
We recommend installing a detector on each floor of your residence, especially outside bedrooms. You’ll want to make 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 economical. A couple of the most popular types 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 encourages 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 simple. Press 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 replace it once a month to bypass the annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
If you’re hearing noise or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping more frequently, it generally indicates it has a low battery. Or, it’s approaching the end of its life. How long carbon monoxide detectors last depends on the brand you have. Typically, it’s around 5–10 years, but make sure to review instructions from your specific manufacturer.
If you’re confused about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s frequently due to the fact it’s sensing hazardous levels 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 ensure your carbon monoxide detector is working as it should 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 BW/Cook Service Experts can assist you. Get in touch with us at 574-218-6404 today and we’ll help you select the perfect carbon monoxide detector for your house.