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Carbon Monoxide – Tips to prevent the chances of CO poisoning

Submitted On August 20, 2019

Carbon monoxide is an odourless, colourless, flammable gas often coined as silent killer. It is produced due to incomplete combustion or from faulty boilers, furnace and fireplace. Even a simple venting problem, if left unchecked, can intensify the problem. The build-up can be hazardous, and the unnoticed carbon monoxide poisoning can result in loss of lives. Therefore it is critical to pay heed to the deadly consequences of this gas and learn how to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.

What are the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning?

The symptoms of high concentration of carbon monoxide include nausea, vomiting, disorientation, visual disturbance, dizziness, headache and muscle cramps. If you sense the signs of the escalated amount of CO, turn off the sources or get away from home and breathe in fresh air.

Is there a treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning?

Replacing CO with pure oxygen is the primary treatment in a road to recovery. In severe situations, a therapy, namely “hyperbaric oxygen therapy room,” is used where the air pressure is three times higher than usual. The treatment speeds up the replacement of CO with oxygen in the blood.

What are proven ways to prevent CO poisoning?

There are some tips or precautions to keep carbon monoxide free home. Problems that seem not so big can prove deadly, e.g. fumes from the heater that are not working correctly or are being used in a wrong way can result in a life-threatening situation.

Check HVAC Vents:

While moving around the furniture or bringing new furniture into the home, make sure, never block the heating vents. The blocked vents can drive up the heat and produce unintended after-effects including

● Cracked heat exchangers that more likely to bring the high amount of Carbon monoxide in your home.
● The reduced surface temperature due to closed vents can trigger the growth of moulds.
● Comfort problems due to lack of proper airflow
● The leakage of ducts

Timely Inspection of the chimney for ultimate safety:

Sudden exposure to flues and chimneys that hinder the gas from escaping can cause toxic level. Hence, it is essential to inspect and clean chimneys for ultimate protection and efficiency. Any obstruction such as debris or bird nest can double the risk of CO poisoning or fire. If you have a gas burning fireplace, it requires additional care like timely checking the gas logs positioning, glass doors for crack and turning gas off to ensure the igniter works fine.

Schedule Regular Maintenance

The timely maintenance from a professional technician can eradicate the potential threats and confirm the HVAC system and other gas-burning system are good to go.

Carbon monoxide Detectors and Alarms

Carbon monoxide detectors are somehow indispensable for the ultimate safety of your home, family and pets. Because of the odourless and poisonous nature of CO, homeowners have felt the need of installing carbon monoxide detectors and alarms. The devices work like smoke detectors that immediately warn you about the presence of CO, which can kill you.

As per the national fire protection association

"A person can be poisoned by a small amount of CO over a longer period of time or by a large amount of CO over a shorter amount of time."

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