The Risks and Signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

The Risks and Signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

We’ve all experienced cold, wintery days, where we turn on the furnace for the first time in a while and enjoy its wonderful warmth. A safe, working furnace is something to be grateful for, but if we don’t keep up with maintenance this essential piece of equipment can also pose a threat to our health. Your furnace could be leaking poisonous carbon monoxide without your knowledge as it can’t be seen or smelled. Follow our guide to learn more about the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning to keep you and your family safe year-round.

Signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

There are indicators and signs of carbon monoxide poisoning that you can watch for if you suspect a carbon monoxide leak. Bookmark this page to easily reference the signs when you need to.

Identifying Carbon Monoxide Leaks

If you suspect your furnace is leaking carbon monoxide, these three things are big giveaways:

  • If you notice stains that look like soot on your furnace, this is an indicator that you may have a carbon monoxide leak. These stains can be black, brown, or yellow in color.
  • A yellow burner flame. Take a look at the color of your burner flame. It should be blue. If it’s an unusual yellow color, this is another indicator of potential carbon monoxide leaking.
  • A smell. Even though carbon monoxide doesn’t emit a smell (which often makes it difficult to detect a leak) there may be other gases leaking through the same escape route which do emit an odor. The combustion process that creates carbon monoxide does emit a burning scent. This is usually confined to the furnace so it wouldn’t normally be smelled, but if you can smell burning while your furnace is on, you may have a carbon monoxide leak.

Indicators of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

You may not notice any of the above signs of a carbon monoxide leak, which can leave you more susceptible to carbon monoxide poisoning. These are the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning that you need to watch for:

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Blurry vision
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Blacking out

These symptoms can start to appear in as little as five minutes when you are exposed to carbon monoxide and will range in severity depending on how long you continue to stay exposed.

How to Avoid A Carbon Monoxide Leak

Follow these steps to ensure your risk of a carbon monoxide leak is lowered:

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector. This can alert you to carbon monoxide leaks before you notice any signs of poisoning.
  • When choosing a furnace, have it installed by a professional. They know what they are doing and will ensure that it is installed correctly. All of Vredevoogd’s technicians are highly qualified and will give you the peace of mind from knowing that your furnace is properly installed.
  • Maintain your furnace with annual tune-ups. Tune-ups are a good way to extend the life of your furnace and keep it running as it should. Tune-ups also give us the chance to spot small inefficiencies that, if left, may grow into larger, more expensive problems in the future.
  • Clean or change your air filters regularly so they don’t get clogged up and cause insufficient airflow.

Keep Your Family Safe with Vredevoogd

Here at Vredevoogd, we have the specialist knowledge to replace, fix, and provide your furnace with the tune-ups it needs to keep you and your family safe. We provide a high-quality service at competitive prices. By joining our Comfort Club, you will receive fantastic benefits such as bi-annual seasonal tune-ups for your AC and furnace, discounted service repairs all year, access to 24/7 emergency services, 365 days a year, and more. And, when you purchase a new furnace from Vredevoogd, repair expenses for parts and labor are covered for up to 10 years on many models!  Contact us today for more information and a member of our team will be happy to help.