Written By Lizzie Howard / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that can be extremely lethal. Furnaces emit it whenever they're producing heat as well as leaks from natural gas appliances in your home. You will not be able to notice if there is a carbon monoxide leak in your home without detectors.
Here are some signs of carbon monoxide poisoning and how you can prevent this silent killer from entering your home in the first place.
Signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
If you do not currently have carbon monoxide detectors installed in your home, here are some signs you may be affected by carbon monoxide. The air in your home will feel stale and stuffy. You may also have the smell of something burning or overheating, but often carbon monoxide can have no odor or color so don’t think you are safe if there is no smell.
You may also experience the following symptoms: weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea/vomiting, hard time breathing, confusion, loss of consciousness and/or blurred vision.
Exposure to carbon monoxide will cause irreversible brain damage or death. If you feel you have been exposed to carbon monoxide poisoning call the poison control center.
Keep Your Home Well Ventilated
Carbon monoxide is a gas, so it behaves accordingly. You can ventilate your home to prevent carbon monoxide from accumulating. Make sure you've got ceiling fans in each room of your house. Then, turn them on at night whenever everyone goes to bed.
You can also inspect your ventilation shafts to ensure there aren't any blockages. Keeping your ventilation shafts clear promotes good airflow throughout your home.
Even if carbon monoxide begins to leak, good ventilation can give you some time to evacuate. It's still important to monitor your home for gas leaks. Otherwise, carbon monoxide poisoning would still be a risk.
Install Plenty of Carbon Detectors
Most importantly, you've got to install plenty of carbon detectors in your home. They're going to detect when there's been a gas leak inside. You'll hear a loud noise ringing throughout the house if they've detected a gas leak.
It's usually loud enough to wake you up, even if you're dead asleep. Put several of them on each level of your home, including the basement. Putting them on each level makes it easier to detect where the gas leak is if there is one.
Go Outside If the Detectors Go Off
You should've put several detectors on each level of your house. If one of them goes off, then you need to evacuate the home. That means you've got a gas leak somewhere inside the house.
After you get everyone out safely, notify the authorities. They'll be able to send someone over to help you stop the gas leak. Don't stand too close to your home while you're waiting for them to arrive. Standing too close could still put you in danger.
Once help arrives, you can let them handle everything. They'll make sure that it's safe for you to go back inside of your house.
Replace Your Furnace Regularly
The most common source of carbon monoxide leaks would be your furnace. If the heat exchanger breaks, it'll begin to leak carbon monoxide gas. A lot of them break after they've been used for a couple of years. You can hire someone to inspect your furnace to see whether it's got a broken heat exchanger.
If it does, you can ask them how much it would cost to replace. Sometimes it is cheaper to repair the furnace. Look up furnace repair in Edmonton or wherever you live to see the prices in your area. Preparing the furnace would prevent it from leaking carbon monoxide into your home. Plus, you'd be able to save a bit of money by repairing it instead of replacing it.
Get a Professional Inspection Each Year
You should also hire someone to inspect all your gas lines at least once a year. Your gas lines are the primary conduit for natural gas into your home. Getting them inspected is crucial to prevent carbon monoxide leaks.
If you've got gas appliances, they're fed by your gas lines. You should also remember to turn off all your appliances each time you're leaving home. Leaving them on could cause gas to build up inside, putting everyone at risk.
Stay on Top of Repairs
You should hire someone to check on your furnace at least once a year. It would be better if you could pay them to inspect it twice a year.
Regular inspections help you detect problems before they get serious. Detecting them early can help you limit the cost of repairs. You'll also avoid gas leaks by getting repairs frequently. Gas won't have time to begin leaking if you're repairing your furnace that often.
Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide poisoning is nothing to joke about. You've got to make sure your home is safe. Otherwise, it's something that could happen to anyone.
Follow all the tips we've just listed above. They should help you keep you and your family safe from carbon monoxide poisoning. If you're following them, you shouldn't have anything to worry about.
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Lizzie Howard is a Colorado native who after graduating from the University of Colorado spends her time as a freelance writer. When Lizzie isn’t writing, she enjoys going on hikes, baking for her friends and family, and spending time with her beloved yellow lab, Sparky.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.