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How Do I Protect Myself From Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?

Jul 10, 2008
Each and every appliance that is fuel burning carries a risk of leaking carbon monoxide, unless it burns carbon based fuel. Carbon monoxide is created through the process of combustion and is so deadly as it is virtually invisible to humans as it is odorless, tasteless and colorless and exposure to it can quite quickly lead to death. When breathed in carbon monoxide enters the bloodstream and prevents oxygen from circulating around the body. After time this will lead to organ failure, and without immediate medical treatment, death. However the majority of people who die from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning will die in their sleep as they are breathing in the fumes all night.

If you are concerned about the effects of carbon monoxide poisoning you need to make sure that you do all you can to protect yourself and others from leaking appliances. Leaking appliances are the main cause of death from carbon monoxide poisoning and many people do not even realise if their appliances are faulty and leaking. Here are some practical things you can do to avoid CO poisoning:

-Make sure that any work that is done on appliances regardless of whether they are in residential or commercial properties is done by someone who is registered to do so. For example, if you are getting new air conditioning installed, have your local HVAC technician carry out the work for you. They are the experts and will ensure that the appliance is installed to government standards.

-Have all appliances serviced regularly to avoid any blockages that could lead to a build up, then leak of carbon monoxide. Doing this is cheap and easy and can save lives. Your local HVAC technician can offer this support as standard and can repair or replace faulty appliances if needed.

-In each room that has an appliance that could leak carbon monoxide make sure that there is adequate ventilation. Without this CO could leak and build up quickly posing a greater risk than in a well ventilated room.

-If you have a chimney in your property you must make sure that is swept by a professional at least once a year to avoid soot and debris from blocking it.

-Install carbon monoxide alarms in your home, these will go off when they detect any CO in the atmosphere and can be a life saver.

-If you notice that one of your appliances is not working as it should be, or you suspect it of leaking you must turn it off immediately and call out someone to take a look at it. This way even if it is not leaking you have prevented a possible problem from occurring.

In order to make sure that your home is not at risk from leaking appliances you should make sure that they are correctly installed and maintained. For more information on this contact your local HVAC technician who will be more than pleased to help you make your home CO safe by installing and checking your appliances regularly.
About the Author
Giant Mechanical is a leading Chicago area company that provides Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration, and a variety of other services. Find out how Giant Mechanical can help you with your commercial, residential, or institutional needs by visiting http://www.giantmechanical.com.
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