Carbon monoxide is an odorless and invisible toxic gas that occurs primarily in homes due to malfunctioning appliances. Ovens, stoves and furnaces are just a few sources of carbon monoxide. When these appliances do not adequately burn off the fuel they use to run, CO2 gas results as a byproduct. Carbon monoxide is the most common cause of death by poisoning at home, in the developed world. At any level, carbon monoxide is bad. At higher levels this gas is deadly and it’s important that you know how to detect carbon monoxide at home.
Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Overall, it’s simple to detect CO2. You can find a carbon monoxide detector for under $50. There are numerous types of detectors out there with different features as well as specific guidelines to follow on installing a CO2 detector. Clicking the aforementioned link will bring you to a page with all the information you need on installation.
Combination Carbon Monoxide Detector Smoke Alarms
This is a good choice if you are looking to detect smoke and CO2 in one handy unit. There are a few different kinds of choices available in this configuration.
Carbon Monoxide Detector with Photoelectric Smoke Alarm
This type of unit will detect carbon monoxide as well as smoke from a smoldering fire. Photoelectric smoke detectors sense the types of fires that tend to smolder such as a cigarette slowly burning through a mattress, or a smoldering fire in a wall that started from an electrical short. Photoelectric smoke alarms are good because they do not cause a lot of nuisance alarms unlike their ionization detecting counterparts.
Carbon Monoxide Detector with Ionization Smoke Alarm
Just like the photoelectric combo unit, these detectors will detect CO2 as well as smoke. Ionization smoke alarms are good at detecting kitchen fires or fast flaming fires. The drawback to these units is that they are prone to false alarms. Humidity from showers or strong cooking exhaust from the kitchen can set these detectors off in otherwise benign conditions. Many people tend to remove batteries from these types of alarms just to silence them, which is dangerous. Many people fail to put the batteries back in, leaving their families unprotected.
Stand alone Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Needless to say, there are plenty of models to choose from. Some have digital readouts providing a constant measure of how much gas is in the air. There are others that only sound off if levels become unsafe. Experts recommend using the ones that do not have a readout because the user can become accustom to seeing the digital display and basically simply rely on whether or not the display continues to be backlit, rather than actually monitoring the levels. You know need to know how to detect carbon monoxide at dangerous levels so a unit that doesn’t have a readout is most certainly adequate.
Plug in Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Numerous plug in models are available, thus eliminating the need to worry about battery life. The only drawback to this is if your electricity cuts out for any reason, your unit will be rendered inoperable. However, some plug in models have a battery backup and we recommend installing these units.
Battery operated Carbon Monoxide Detector
When it comes to battery operated CO2 alarms, the choices go far and wide. There are 10 year battery sealed units that never require a battery change. The life of these units are capped at 10 years and in some states with 10 year smoke detector legislation, these units are mandatory. There are other units that require a battery change every three years or so. To see a list of battery operated carbon monoxide detectors, click here.
The answer to how to detect carbon monoxide at home is simple. Purchase a CO2 detector. It could be the difference between life and death. Protect your family now!