Along with the standard preventive maintenance, you should schedule on your heating system this fall, you should also take the time for another vital safety check on your carbon monoxide detector. These devices, along with smoke detectors, are essential for keeping your family safe if you use any devices that burn fuel to produce heat, such as heating systems.
The Risks of Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide (CO) is produced as a byproduct of combustion, which means that anything that burns will also generate this highly poisonous gas. What makes CO particularly dangerous is that it cannot be detected by human senses—it is odorless, colorless, and tasteless. If there is a carbon monoxide leak in your home, the gas can accumulate to dangerous or even fatal levels without even being noticed. In most of the recorded CO-related deaths, individuals have died because of being exposed to the gas in their sleep.
Checking and Testing your Carbon Monoxide Detector
Carbon monoxide detectors are electronic devices that are designed to sense the presence of CO and sound a loud alarm in response. If your CO detector goes off, you should consider it a serious matter of not just health and safety, but of life and death.
As part of fall HVAC system maintenance, check your CO detector as well.
- Visually inspect the unit for damage, loose or missing covers, or detachment from any screws holding it to the wall. Replace covers and tighten screws to secure the detector in place. If damaged, replace the unit.
- Install new batteries during fall maintenance, even if the current batteries are still working. This will prevent a battery failure during the cooler months.
- Press the “test” button on the outside of the unit and hold it down until the alarm sounds. If the detector fails the test, replace it as soon as possible.
Sherlock Plumbing, Heating & Air has more than thirteen years of experience providing quality HVAC services to customers in San Diego and the neighboring communities. Contact us today for more information on the importance of a carbon monoxide detector in your home.