Like most homeowners, the safety of your family is always a primary concern. This concern leads you to ensure that your home is clean and free from potential hazards that can harm the ones you love.
While these things are important, they are not always enough to keep your family safe, especially when dealing with the colorless, odorless gas known as carbon monoxide that has the potential to be deadly.
What is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that may be present in your home’s air, without you ever knowing there is a problem. This gas has no odor, taste, or color, which can lead to high levels of the gas being in the air, without anyone being able to detect it.
Carbon Monoxide in the Body
When carbon monoxide is present in the air, it is breathed in along with oxygen. However, as CO is heavier than oxygen, it allows the red blood cells to pick up the carbon monoxide rather than the oxygen and transport it to the tissues in the body. As the levels of the gas in the tissues increases, it results in carbon monoxide poisoning.
Dangers of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide or CO exposure causes a range of symptoms when present in the air of your home. These first symptoms of exposure generally include:
These are the first symptoms that occur when there is CO gas present in the air of your home. When the amount of carbon monoxide in the air increases, these symptoms get worse. Additionally, when there are high levels of carbon monoxide in the air, symptoms also include:
- Chest Pain
- Muscle Weakness
- Loss of Consciousness
As you can tell, carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms are similar to those that occur with other illnesses, which is one reason why the real causes may go unaddressed for too long. When this happens, death can occur relatively quickly, especially in those that are sleeping or under the influence of alcohol or sleeping medications.
Causes of Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide is caused when fuels such as natural gas, coal, propane, wood, or oil are not burned completely, allowing it to be released into the air. Your water heater, gas ranges, and wood-burning appliances can all release this gas. However, the most common source of deadly carbon monoxide levels in your home is your heating system.
Protecting Your Family
The reason that carbon monoxide is so dangerous is because it cannot be detected by sight or smell. One of the most important means of keeping an eye on CO levels in your home is to purchase a carbon monoxide detector that is specially designed to alert you when there is carbon monoxide in the air.
Oil, propane, and gas heating systems release carbon monoxide into the air when they are not working properly, or if there is a blockage in the system. The best way to protect your family is to make sure you have a carbon monoxide safety inspection performed on your heating system by a trained professional.
At Berner AC & Heating, we take your family’s safety seriously. Our carbon monoxide safety inspection includes a digital inspection to determine if there is carbon monoxide in the air, as well as a visual inspection of your heating system and heat exchanger.
Call 504-822-8080 for the Southshore or 985-727-2302 if you’re on the Northshore today to make an appointment for the #1 life saving gift you can give your family this season, and take advantage of our $33 carbon monoxide safety inspection of your heating system.