When you think of fire and carbon monoxide, the first thought that likely comes to mind is how can I prevent CO from wreaking havoc in my home? Because it’s true – fire and CO really don’t mix. But did you know that a smoke detector won’t alert you if there is an excess of CO in your home? This article will explain why carbon monoxide (CO) is not detected by smoke detectors, and what you can do to protect your family from the dangers of CO.
Does Smoke Detector Detect Carbon Monoxide?
No, smoke detectors do not detect carbon monoxide (CO). They detect the presence of smoke, which could be a sign of a fire, which can produce CO. A CO detector is a separate device that detects carbon monoxide. Smoke detectors and CO detectors should be used together.
Why Don’t Smoke Detectors Detect Carbon Monoxide?
It’s a different type of smoke
Smoke isn’t just an aesthetic issue; it’s a health issue. That’s why smoke detectors are designed to detect smoke from a wide variety of sources. But the most dangerous types of smoke aren’t the ones that come from wood fires and the like. They’re the ones that come from burning plastics, synthetic fabrics, and other compounds that contain carbon monoxide. CO is an invisible, odourless gas that poses a serious threat to your health and safety. That’s why CO detectors are a specialized type of smoke detector. They’re designed to detect carbon monoxide, not wood smoke or other sources of visible smoke.
CO is heavier than air
Unlike the particulate matter in wood smoke, carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas. That means that it doesn’t rise up through the house like wood smoke does. Instead, it hovers in the lower part of your house. To put it another way, CO is heavier than air. That means it will sink down to the lower parts of your home and pool there. That makes it especially dangerous because it can build up to dangerous levels in places like garages, basements, and other parts of your home where people might be spending a lot of time. That’s why smoke detectors are designed to be mounted high up on a wall. They’re supposed to catch any smoke that rises up from a fire before it gets a chance to sink down into the lower parts of your home.
CO detectors have to be mounted in the right place
One reason why smoke detectors don’t detect carbon monoxide is that they have to be mounted in the right place. They have to be high up on a wall, at least six inches away from any wall or electrical outlet. That’s because smoke from a fire will rise up from the floor to the ceiling. So you want your smoke detectors mounted high up on a wall so they can catch any smoke that rises above the rest of the room and the rest of the house. But carbon monoxide isn’t supposed to rise up like smoky particulate matter. Instead, it’s supposed to stay on the ground and pool in the lower parts of your house. That’s why CO detectors have to be mounted low down, near the floor. That’s where the danger is, not up on a high wall like a smoke detector.
CO detectors cost more upfront
Another reason why smoke detectors don’t detect carbon monoxide is that they cost more up front. CO detectors are more expensive to purchase than smoke detectors because they’re designed to be very sensitive and very accurate. That means that their sensors can be more delicate, and they have to be installed in a way that minimizes false alarms. That costs money up front. But once they’re installed, smoke detectors will last for a long time. They don’t have to be replaced like CO detectors do. Replacing a CO detector every few years can get expensive. That’s one reason why carbon monoxide detectors are often included as part of a fire detection system. It’s less expensive to include CO detection than it is to buy separate CO detectors.
CO detectors cost more over the long term
Another reason why smoke detectors don’t detect carbon monoxide is that CO detectors are supposed to last a lot longer than smoke detectors. A smoke detector is designed to last about 10 years. That’s about how long the sensors inside will last before they have to be replaced. That’s not bad for a piece of equipment that’s supposed to be protecting your family from fire 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. But CO detectors have to last much longer than 10 years. That’s because they’re designed to keep working even after they’ve been contaminated by the carbon monoxide they’re supposed to detect. That means that CO detectors have to be built to last a lot longer than smoke detectors.
How To Recognize The Signs Of Co In Your Home?
- Shortness of Breath – If there is carbon monoxide in your home, you may experience shortness of breath, a headache, nausea, and dizziness. These are only a few of the symptoms of CO poisoning.
- Strange odors – You may experience an unusual odor in your home when there is CO present.
- Unusual appliances – If your furnace or water heater is operating above normal levels, or if your appliances are emitting an unusual sound, then you may have CO in your home.
- Feeling tired – If you are experiencing sleepiness, weakness, confusion, or mood changes, then CO may be the culprit.
- Headaches – Headaches are a common symptom of CO poisoning. – Drop in temperature – If you notice a drop in temperature in your home, it could be because CO is blocking the heat from escaping.
How To Protect Your Family From Co?
- Keep appliances maintained – This includes your furnace, water heater, stove, and any other appliances that are present in your home.
- Install CO alarms – Carbon monoxide alarms can detect excessive levels of CO before it reaches a dangerous level. CO alarms should be placed at least 10 feet away from the appliances that are releasing the CO.
- Keep the house well-ventilated – You want to make sure you are allowing fresh air to circulate in your home, which will help to remove CO from the air.
- Install a CO ventilation system – This will help you to remove CO from your home.
- Limit the use of gas stoves – This isn’t a rule, however, you should keep in mind that gas stoves are more likely to leak CO.
- Close off rooms without a source of fresh air – If there is no way for the room to receive fresh air, you should close it off.
- Limit the number of people in the home – The more people in the home, the more CO you are likely to produce.
What Is A Co Monitor And Which One Should You Buy?
There are many different CO monitors on the market, however, none of them are smoke detectors. CO monitors are designed to detect CO in your home, which is different from a smoke detector that detects the presence of fire. With that said, there are many CO monitors on the market, each with different features, capabilities, and price points. When shopping for a CO monitor, you’ll want to keep in mind the size of your home, the number of people that will be in your home, and the price point.
- Size – Most CO monitors come in different sizes, so you can choose the one that is best suited for your home. You’ll want to keep in mind that the larger the CO monitor, the more sensitive it is to CO.
- People in your home – You’ll want to determine how many people are in your home on a daily basis. You’ll also want to take into account the size of the people in your home. A larger person produces more CO than a smaller person.
- Price point – CO monitors range in price from below $50 to $300+. You’ll want to consider your budget when shopping for a CO monitor.
Carbon monoxide is a dangerous threat that is often overlooked by homeowners. However, it’s extremely important to protect yourself from CO. That’s why it’s important to understand that smoke detectors won’t protect you from CO. If you have CO in your home, then you’ll want to take action quickly. If you do have an excess of CO in your home, you don’t have time to waste. You need to take action to protect your family as quickly as possible. If you want to protect your family from the dangers of CO, it’s important to understand that smoke detectors won’t protect you from CO. Furthermore, it’s important to know what the signs of CO in your home are and how to protect yourself from CO.