Fall is officially here! Many homeowners opt to skip the fall maintenance check on their heater and deal with the breakdown during the winter. Aside from breaking down when you need it most, there’s another reason why HVAC manufacturers recommend fall heater service: carbon monoxide. Vredevoogd Heating & Cooling understands the dangers of carbon monoxide and they are as follows.
A Silent Killer
Carbon monoxide does not have any color or odor, which is why every home should have a carbon monoxide detector. You won’t know if carbon monoxide is pouring into your home until you get sick or worse and any gas product produces carbon monoxide, including your home’s heater. Carbon monoxide is also found in grills and stoves, lanterns and fireplaces.
Part of a fall furnace maintenance check is to ensure your furnace releases its carbon monoxide properly, e.g. venting it outside of your home. If your furnace is not operating efficiently, it can release deadly carbon monoxide gas into the home rather than out of it, and this could spell illness or death for your family. This is the primary danger of carbon monoxide.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
There are signs of carbon monoxide poisoning that will alert you to an issue but the caveat is you must be awake. Hundreds of people die in the United States each year of carbon monoxide poisoning and many deaths occur during sleep. One reason why is carbon monoxide can make you feel tired; if you’re already asleep, you will fall into a deeper sleep and continue to inhale the gas.
Other signs of carbon monoxide or CO poisoning include chest pain, confusion, dizziness, headache, nausea and/or vomiting, and weakness. Many people feel as if they have the flu when, in reality, they are actually suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning. Inhaling too much carbon monoxide can make you pass out, so it’s crucial to avoid the potential for CO poisoning before you’re at risk.
How to Avoid Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
To avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, make certain you have plenty of carbon monoxide detectors in your home. Ideally, there should be one in each room, but depending on your home’s layout and the detectors themselves, you might get away with less. Keep your chimney clean and never close the flue until a fire is completely out. Don’t use outdoor stoves indoors and never block gas vents.
Finally, call Vredevoogd Heating & Cooling for a fall furnace inspection and maintenance. Lansing, MI, residents can call us at 517-507-4174. Kalamazoo, MI, homeowners should dial 269-290-7844, and those living in Grand Rapids, MI, can reach us at 616-828-5411.