As autumn approaches, now is a good time to get started thinking about your home’s carbon monoxide detectors. When heating season begins, the Centers for Disease Control says the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning increases.
Carbon monoxide is a harmful gas that’s colorless, odorless and tasteless. It’s a byproduct of combustion your gas furnace uses to warm your home. When your heater is operating like it’s supposed to, the gas is safely vented outside of your home. Cracks in your furnace’s heat exchanger or flue pipes can cause carbon monoxide to leak into your home, where long-term 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 each year. And another approximately 50,000 people go to the hospital because of related symptoms, like headaches, dizziness and vomiting.
The best ways you can protect your loved ones is by scheduling regular maintenance of all gas, oil, or wood burning appliances, like your furnace and water heater, and installing a carbon monoxide detector. From plug-in to smart carbon monoxide detectors, there’s a solution available that matches for your home and budget.
Smart Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Smart carbon monoxide detectors, including the Nest carbon monoxide detector, make it straightforward to remain in control for keeping your loved ones safe. They’re frequently available as duo carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and can generally be linked with other smart home devices via Wi-Fi.
Here are a few other advantages of having them in your home:
- Alerts you that there’s a problem through voice notifications, as well as alerts on your phone.
- Reveals the problem spot, such as the kitchen or basement.
- Can be shut off from your phone.
- Automatically checks 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 an annoying chirp in the middle of the night.
- Lasts up to 10 years, depending on the brand.
The only downside of using Wi-Fi carbon monoxide detectors is the price tag. 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 find in a non-smart device.
When you’re installing a new device, it’s vital to learn where to put carbon monoxide detectors. The Environmental Protection Agency encourages putting a carbon monoxide detector around five feet above the floor or on the ceiling. This is because carbon monoxide can rise with warm air.
We recommend using a detector on each floor of your residence, especially outside bedrooms. You’ll want to be 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 few of the most popular styles are Kidde carbon monoxide detectors and First Alert carbon monoxide detectors.
But they also have fewer features that don’t work with your phone or smart home devices. They generally 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 every week. If you’re wondering how to test for carbon monoxide, it’s more or less straightforward. Depress the button to be certain your detector is functioning.
If your detector is hardwired, make sure to change the backup battery at least every 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 getting that sound or your carbon monoxide detector is beeping more frequently, it usually signals it has a low battery. Or, it’s approaching the end of its life. How long carbon monoxide detectors work depends on the brand you use. Most often, it’s around 5–10 years, but make sure to review instructions from your device’s manufacturer.
If you’re concerned about why your carbon monoxide detector is beeping, it’s usually due to the fact it’s detected high amounts of carbon monoxide. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off with continuous, loud beeping, leave your residence right away and dial 911.
Now is a good time to ensure your carbon monoxide detector is running normally before heating season starts. If you need to set up furnace maintenance or you’re interested in upgrading to smart carbon monoxide detectors, the Experts at Neal Harris Service Experts can help. Reach us at 816-787-0500 today and we’ll help you select the ideal carbon monoxide detector for your house.