Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning often occurs in inclement weather while families use portable generators, stoves, and other energy sources in enclosed spaces during power outages. A gas that is odorless and invisible, leaving no trace of poor indoor air quality to the naked eye, CO poisoning is a silent killer that is entirely preventable with the right precautions. Here are a few things you can do to help your family avoid this tragedy.
Install a CO detector in your home.
Check your fire alarm to see if it has a carbon monoxide detection setting included. If not, you can buy a battery-powered detector or a battery back-up detector that plugs into the wall or installs into the ceiling like a fire alarm. They should be in all bedrooms and living spaces so that your family can hear them when they go off—even if you’re asleep when they register poor indoor air quality. You should change the batteries in these devices every six months to be safe; scheduling this routine around daylight savings makes it easy to remember.
Bring in a professional.
Get your heating system, water heater, and any other gas, oil, or coal burning appliances serviced by a licensed technician annually. These home essentials should receive service regardless to assure they’re running efficiently, but doing so can also save your life from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Run a car or truck inside a garage attached to your home.
It’s a common occurrence that a parent will start the car in the garage to motivate their tardy kids to get out the door. Even if the garage door is open, though, never run a vehicle in your garage for longer than it takes to start it up and back out of the enclosed space. Carbon monoxide can quickly build up and depreciate the indoor air quality throughout your home—not just your garage.
Use a gasoline or charcoal-burning device in or near your home.
You should not use any generators, pressure washers, charcoal grills, camp stoves, or other gas or charcoal-powered items within 20 feet of a window, door, or vent in your house. The exhaust from these machines will have the same effect on indoor air quality as a car in a garage. Also, any wood-burning stoves or fireplaces should have proper ventilation, and your technician should clean the vents and flues to eradicate any obstructions or debris during your annual inspection.
To assure you keep your family safe from CO poisoning, hire an expert HVAC company to handle maintenance. In Ashtabula, OH, residents have depended on Ziegler Heating Company for nearly 80 years. Their family-owned and -operated business prioritizes preventative maintenance to assure their customer’s HVAC systems work efficiently while offering excellence in installations and repairs when it’s time for a fix. To request a free estimate from this A+ rated Better Business Bureau® company, call (440) 969-1141 or visit them online to learn more about their services.