Carbon monoxide is all around us and a natural part of the environment. It is also a byproduct of many of our household appliances and necessary heating systems. While in small and natural quantities, it is not harmful; in other more massive quantities, it can be deadly. This is why it is necessary to know the common causes of carbon monoxide exposure.
Many appliances such boilers, most heating systems, water heaters, gas fires, and coal and wood stoves produce carbon monoxide. Newer appliances may produce less than older ones. With older appliances, the levels can be dangerous if they are not properly serviced. When appliances age and go without regular tune ups, checks, or cleaning, they can put out more carbon monoxide than what is deemed safe. Remember, the older an appliance is, the higher the risk for carbon monoxide poisoning.
Other situations in your home can be the cause of carbon monoxide exposure and lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. If you have a garage, leaving your car running inside with the door closed is extremely dangerous. Within minutes, a lethal level of carbon monoxide can build up inside. If you have a chimney with a flue, any kind of blockage while a fire is burning can also lead to a significant and dangerous level of carbon monoxide in the house. Certain chemicals cleaners, such as paint removers, also contain high levels of carbon monoxide. Always be sure to read labels and follow directions with any chemicals you introduce into your home.
Don’t rely on your nose or any other senses to alert you to an overexposure of carbon monoxide. With carbon monoxide being colorless, odorless, and tasteless, any kind of exposure is impossible to detect until symptoms crop up. Being aware of the common causes of carbon monoxide can help you and your family become more aware of any exposure.Call us today to learn more!