Carbon Monoxide: Silent, But Deadly

What exactly is Carbon Monoxide? Like Radon, it is in the form of a gas, and it is deadly. It's colorless and most of all it's odorless. This silent killer is detrimental to the bodies ability to carry oxygen to the brain. As a result Carbon Monoxide poisoning will be very similar to that of a flu virus. Symptoms can include dizziness, nausea, fatigue, loss of breath, headaches, and disorientation. It's estimated that more than 2,000 deaths each year will be attributed to Carbon Monoxide poisoning.

So what can be done to prevent this? First you must understand the potential sources. Items that can create and inject Carbon Monoxide into your home are, about not limited to: a faulty furnace, stove, water heater, or wood stove, or basically anything that burns oil, gas, propane, or wood. Other items that emit the gas that frequently go unnoticed are cars and lawn mowers. Carbon Monoxide is not a by-product of using electricity. Proper maintenance of appliances is the best way to reduce the risk of Carbon Monoxide.

If preventing Carbon Monoxide does not happen, then you must ensure detecting it does happen. Carbon Monoxide detectors constantly monitor the air for the presence of Carbon Monoxide. They resemble in appearance smoke detectors and the alarms sound the same way, when activated. Some of the newer models actually provide a digital read of the Carbon Monoxide level. Carbon Monoxide detectors are available in hardware stores and most major department stores. Like smoke detectors, Carbon Monoxide detectors can save lives and are a relatively inexpensive insurance policy.

If your home has any fuel-burning appliances or devices or even a fireplace, then you should have at least one Carbon Monoxide detector. This detector should be place near sleeping areas or in hallways. And ideally, should be placed up high near the ceiling to be most effective.