The danger of carbon monoxide (CO) in your home is real and something you must seriously consider.
Carbon monoxide kills. It can poison your family without warning, even as they sleep.
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Vredevoogd Heating and Cooling invites you to read this information so you understand the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and how to protect your family and yourself. Each year, as reported by the Center for Disease Control, hundreds of Americans die from unintentional CO poisoning. In addition, thousands are treated for poisoning. Americans who are 65 and older are associated with the highest fatality rate associated with CO poisoning, but the danger is real for everyone regardless of age.
What Is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon Monoxide is a poisonous gas that is often called a “silent killer” because it is odorless and tasteless. People simply can’t tell when this gas has been released inside their home and when they breathe it in. While many people have installed carbon monoxide detectors in their homes, these devices may not sound their alarm until CO levels are already dangerously high.
Winter and Increased CO Poisoning Risks
A malfunctioning furnace or boiler can cause serious problems. One of the most serious issues that plague these systems is when their gases do not properly vent. A plugged or collapsed chimney can trap gases inside your home that are meant to be eliminated. A crack or hole in the heat exchanger can also cause carbon monoxide to be released into the home where it can kill.
Signs and Symptoms of CO Poisoning
First, it’s important to remember that people may not exhibit symptoms if the CO leak occurs at night. When they are sleeping, people may experience no marked symptoms–except they do not wake up. People who are exposed to low levels of CO in their home may experience flu-like symptoms such as nausea and headaches. Shortness of breath is another symptom that may occur. Confusion or general malaise can be signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. If you suspect you have CO poisoning, leave your home and seek emergency care immediately.
Reduce Your Risks for CO Poisoning
The heat exchanger is a common culprit when it comes to CO poisoning. Your heating and cooling technicians should check this component for safe operation during routine checkups. It’s also important to install multiple carbon monoxide detectors and place them near sleeping areas. Also, if you notice decreasing hot water supply, a malfunctioning furnace, a burning odor, or increased condensation on windows, you should have your furnace checked by a professional who is familiar with carbon monoxide safety inspections.
If you have concerns about the safe operation of your heating system or have questions about carbon monoxide and how else you can safely guard against this deadly poison gas, call Vredevoogd today at 616-828-5411. We serve Western Michigan and would be happy to schedule you for a maintenance checkup soon.