Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that is produced through burning fuel. Not only is it dangerous, but it is deadly when undetected. Detecting carbon monoxide without a detector is impossible, since the gas is odorless, tasteless and colorless. Your family could be exposed to carbon monoxide inside your home, especially if any of the systems that help to run your home burn fuel, such as gas water heaters, gas and oil furnaces, fireplaces and gas ovens.
In the United States, 430 people are accidentally poisoned and die from carbon monoxide each year1. Thousands more are brought to emergency rooms, having been exposed to the gas.
You don’t need to change your lifestyle to protect your family. If dangerous levels of carbon monoxide invade your home, a well-placed detector has the potential to save lives.
Proper Placement to Help Prevent Carbon Monoxide Exposure
Knowing where not to place a carbon monoxide detector is equally important as knowing where one should be installed. Installing one close to a fireplace, for instance, will yield unhelpful results, as the detector may be triggered without cause. You don’t want your family to get used to ignoring the detector, believing the alarm was a mistake. Measure up five feet from the floor and place the detector at this point on the wall, this is the ideal placement. This will help to ensure that it’s safely away from the hands of little ones and from curious pets. You may also place a detector on the ceiling, since warm air rises, and with it carbon monoxide gas, however, don’t forget to add a detector to the basement, too.
It’s a good idea to purchase more than one detector, especially if you live in a house with multiple bedrooms. Place one on each floor. Because the gas is odorless, it won’t awaken your family if it wafts through the home. Place one close to sleeping quarters. If the house has several bedroom wings, consider installing a detector in each of those areas.
Place a detector in rooms that are located above or adjacent to a garage. Placing one inside the garage is also a good idea.
Only install UL Listed carbon monoxide detectors and follow all manufacturer’s installation and safety instructions. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency advises homeowners to test detectors once a week to ensure they work and to replace batteries at least once per year2.
As a footnote to the above, please remember that carbon monoxide and smoke detectors are different. Install both to help ensure your home and family stays safe.
FPL Home and its affiliates help keep your home running with offerings of surge protection, and service plans for electrical wiring, plumbing lines, sewer/septic lines, water heaters, electrical systems, HVAC systems and backup generators. Knowing what appliances produce carbon monoxide and where to place them will help to ensure your family’s safety. For more information on how offerings by FPL Home and its affiliates could benefit you, call (833) 437-5466.