In an effort to educate our community on the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and key safeguards, All Pro Plumbing, Heating and Air will now recognize November as Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month. Call us today at (909) 500-8193 for more information on carbon monoxide monitors and alarms that can help keep your family safe.

Carbon monoxide is a deadly gas that is odorless, tasteless and colorless. It is commonly recognized as the Silent Killer because it is almost impossible to detect without equipment, and results in thousands of deaths and hospitalizations each year. Knowledge and preparedness are the key to keeping you and your family safe from the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning!

1. Symptoms

Many of the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are flu-like in nature, and therefore easy to disregard as an immediate emergency. These include nausea, headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, overall weakness or fatigue, shortness of breath, pain in the chest and a feeling of confusion. The wide spectrum of symptoms often causes the affected to overlook carbon monoxide poisoning as the culprit. It is crucial to understand not only the variety of symptoms, but also the degree of impact. Everyone is affected differently – especially children and the elderly!

2. Common Sources of Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a by-product of many common fuel-burning appliances found in homes, including clothes dryers, stoves, fireplaces (both gas and wood burning), water heaters, gas furnaces, boilers and more. Carbon monoxide poisoning within a home occurs when these appliances are misused or not functioning properly. For example, a stove should never be turned on and left open for the purpose of warming your home. This equates to the improper use of an appliance that is not meant to serve as a heating system, and the lack of proper ventilation could result in toxic levels of carbon monoxide within your home.

Proper maintenance for fuel-burning appliances also goes a long way towards the defense against carbon monoxide poisoning. Water heaters and gas furnaces, for example, should undergo yearly maintenance and safety inspections by a certified HVAC professional in order to ensure safety and longevity.

3. Carbon Monoxide Alarms

Carbon monoxide alarms should be a top priority for all homeowners. These small devices usually require nothing more than two AA batteries, and can be easily mounted on your wall. Aside from a seamless installation process, they can also be routinely tested to ensure functionality. These alarms are designed to alert you when carbon monoxide toxicity rises to crisis levels – commonly recognized as 70 ppm (parts per million) over a span of 3.5 hours. When the alarm sounds, immediate evacuation is critical.

It is generally recommended that one carbon monoxide alarm be installed on each floor of your home. Batteries should be checked routinely, and replaced once a year. We recommend the first day of Fall in order to establish a long-term routine.

4. Carbon Monoxide Monitors

Carbon monoxide monitors are an incredible supplement to the alarms mentioned above. These are low-level monitors that gauge carbon monoxide levels on a continuous, 24/7 basis. Here at All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electrical, we are proud to work with the National Comfort Institute, Inc. to provide our clients with the proper equipment and education necessary for carbon monoxide safety. For round-the-clock monitoring, we recommend the NSI 3000, with a digital display that is triggered when levels reach 5 ppm. The first alarm sounds at 15 ppm, with a high alarm following when levels reach 35 ppm. A crisis alarm will also sound at 70 ppm.

The NSI 3000 is only available through CO-certified HVAC professionals like All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electrical. Simple and easy to use yet highly effective, the NSI 3000 is also backed by a five year warranty.

5. What To Do

If you or anyone in your home is experiencing symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, the first thing you should do is evacuate the premises. Immediately call 911 and seek medical assistance for all who are affected or were exposed.

Once you are safe and healthy, call a certified professional to inspect your current safety equipment, or install the necessary devices.

As your local HVAC experts, All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electrical is committed to the safety and health of you and your family. Call us today at (909) 500-8193 for more information on carbon monoxide awareness, and how we can help you safeguard your home!