Carbon Monoxide: Protecting Yourself From “The Silent Killer”

It is so important that you take the time to maintain your appliances not just because they will last you longer, but there are plenty of problems that can occur in a home environment. One of the most dangerous is carbon monoxide. It’s an odorless, colorless, and toxic gas, and could kill you before you are aware of it in your home. Let’s show you exactly what you need to do to protect yourself from carbon monoxide. 

What Are the Sources of Carbon Monoxide?

There are a number of different sources in the home. From gas stoves to furnaces, leaking chimneys, and unvented gas space heaters. At low concentrations, carbon monoxide can cause chest pain and fatigue but with prolonged exposure, CO could contribute to reduced brain functions, blurred vision, and possibly angina. But at higher concentrations, there are a number of symptoms. These include confusion, dizziness, headaches nausea, and can prove fatal. 

How Can You Reduce Exposure to Carbon Monoxide? 

It’s so important to make sure that any combustion equipment is maintained. If you have a furnace at home, a furnace repair service can inspect your central heating system. It is important that this is done annually, and if there are any leaks in your central heating system, that these are repaired as soon as possible. 

Additionally, you may want to consider purchasing a vented space heater if you are replacing an unvented one. And if you are looking at purchasing a wood stove, while these look amazing, make sure that they are certified to meet the emission standards of the EPA. 

Additional Prevention Methods

There are so many things that we can do to make sure our home is safe from carbon monoxide poisoning. It is completely preventable, and now you know the symptoms, you have to make sure that there are many of these components in place. For example, you will need to check or change the batteries in your carbon monoxide detector every six months. It’s important to have a battery-powered carbon monoxide detector. 

Additionally, if you have a garage, do not leave the motor running in a closed space like your garage. You should never run any motor vehicle or generator less than 20 feet from an open window vent or door because if the exhaust can vent into an enclosed area, this is exposing that space to carbon monoxide. It’s important to remember that enclosed spaces are where the risks of carbon monoxide run high. You should never run any gasoline-powered engine inside an enclosed structure, even if the windows and doors are open. And if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, you have to call a healthcare professional or 911 right away. 

Carbon monoxide is often called “the silent killer.” Because we cannot detect it, this is why prevention is the best course of action. If you are ever concerned, you should never be on the fence. Make sure that you conduct your due diligence because it is so important to protect your family and yourself.


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