Carbon Monoxide Poisoning – Prevention
Dangerous levels of CO can be prevented by making sure that any appliance in or around your home that burns fuel is regularly serviced and cleaned. Also, make sure to have an annual inspection of the ventilation system that is designed to remove CO from your home, including the fireplace chimney. You can minimize risk of CO poisoning by purchasing a CO detector and placing them throughout the living space of your home and next to your bedroom. Be sure to purchase a CO detector that has a battery back-up
Tips to avoid CO poisoning
- Proper installation is critical to the safe operation of combustion appliances. All new appliances have installation instructions that should be followed exactly. Local building codes should be followed as well.
- Appliances designed to be vented should be vented properly, according to manufacturers’ instructions.
- Adequate combustion air should be provided to ensure complete combustion.
- All combustion appliances should be installed by professionals.
- A qualified service technician should perform preventive maintenance on homes with central and room heating appliances (including water heaters and gas dryers) annually. The technician should look at the electrical and mechanical components of appliances, such as thermostat controls and automatic safety devices. Also, have the technician check burners to ensure they are working properly.
- Chimneys and flues should be kept free of blockages, corrosion, and loose connections.
- Individual appliances should be serviced regularly.
- Kerosene and gas space heaters (vented or unvented) should be cleaned and inspected to ensure proper operation.
- Follow manufacturers’ directions for safe operation.
- Make sure the room where an unvented gas or kerosene space heater is used is well ventilated; doors leading to another room should be open to allow added ventilation.
- Never use an unvented combustion heater overnight or in a room where you are sleeping.
- Never use charcoal grills inside a home, tent, camper, or unventilated garage.
- Don’t leave vehicles running in an enclosed garage, even to “warm up” a car on a cold morning.
In addition to professional preventive maintenance on a potentially CO-producing appliance, timely inspections should be performed by the homeowner to identify signs of possible CO problems. Look for the following conditions, and if detected, have a professional service technician fully examine the unit for safety and continued use.
- Rusting or water streaking on vent/chimney.
- Loose or missing furnace panel.
- Sooting on internal or attic spaces.
- Loose or disconnected vent/chimney connections.
- Debris or soot falling from chimney, fireplace, or appliance.
- Loose masonry on chimney.
In addition, there are signs that might indicate improper appliance operation which include:
- Decreasing hot water supply.
- Furnace unable to heat house or runs constantly.
- Sooting, especially on appliances.
- Unfamiliar or burning odor.
- Increased condensation inside windows.
Next to prevention of the production of toxic CO gas, the best defense against this deadly killer is a CO alarm. These devices can detect toxic concentration of CO in the air, sound an alarm, and thereby save lives.
Contact our Carbon Monoxide Lawyers
If you or someone you care about has been poisoned by carbon monoxide contact The Overchuck Law Firm immediately. Our early intervention is critical. Call us at 1-855-683-7248 or fill out the online form provided on this page and we will call you back shortly..
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