Most homeowners understand the need for functioning fire alarms in their homes, but fewer understand the need for carbon monoxide (CO) detectors. Below, we’ll discuss what CO detectors are, how they work, why you need them, and the risk of not having them installed in your home.
What Are CO Detectors?
Carbon monoxide detectors are similar to smoke detectors, but they’re designed specifically to identify carbon monoxide, the highly poisonous gas that can accumulate in your home. They are often standalone units, but can be built into smoke alarms as well.
How Do They Work?
CO detectors are extremely sensitive and can detect even trace amounts of carbon monoxide, an odorless, colorless, and deadly gas. Some units use a chemical reaction with constituents in the sensor to identify CO gas and trigger an alarm. Others use a change in electrical resistance when predetermined levels of CO are present in the air.
The alarm sounds when CO is detected, similar to a smoke alarm, to alert you and your family to an accumulation of carbon monoxide.
Importance of Working CO Detectors
Carbon monoxide can accumulate in your home if your boiler malfunctions or isn’t properly vented. It can also be released by other equipment that is fueled by a flame, including gas stoves, heaters, and water heaters. CO is extremely dangerous because it isn’t detectable by humans. It’s entirely clear and has no odor, so functioning CO detectors are the only solution for keeping yourself and your family protected from the poisonous gas.
Risk of Not Having Them Inspected or Replaced
Built-in carbon monoxide detectors need to be inspected regularly, and stand-alone, battery-powered units need regular replacing. Neglecting to have your CO detectors inspected or replaced leaves your home prone to CO build-up, which is highly flammable and deadly, even in trace amounts.
Functioning CO detectors are the only reliable way to keep you and your loved ones safe from the odorless, colorless, and poisonous gas. Whether you need your CO detectors inspected, replaced, or tested for proper functionality, contact one of our friendly and highly-trained experts for more information.