You’ve probably seen it in the news. The silent killer, carbon monoxide strikes again. Carbon Monoxide or CO often comes from heating appliances in your home such as your furnace, boiler or water heater. That’s why it’s worth it to have you heating system serviced annually to ensure safe operation for your family.
Carbon monoxide is colourless, odourless, tasteless and non-irritating. It’s why it’s called the silent killer that takes many lives in Canada every year. Every homeowner living with fuel-burning appliances is potentially at risk to CO poising.
CO can be circulated throughout your home by the heating system. Once released, CO is heavier than air. That’s why it is particularly problematic in bedroom areas and why many homeowners die in their sleep.
How do you avoid the dangers of CO?
- Obviously have working CO detectors on each floor of your home and make sure the batteries are changed annually. Ask your heating contractor where to properly place detectors in your home. But remember, a detector is no substitute for proper heating repair and maintenance.
- Secondly, have your furnace or boiler serviced and inspected. If your furnace is older than ten years, it may be a danger and time to replace it.
- The savings you get on a new higher efficiency furnace may make it worthwhile when you think of the fuel savings over the next ten years and the invaluable safety for your family.
- Keep areas around your water heater and furnace clear so air can properly circulate and maintenance work can be performed.
- Have your chimney inspected if you’ve had it for a number of years. A deteriorating chimney may become blocked and prevent CO from properly venting to the outside.
- Cars produce a lot of CO, so back your car out of the garage to warm it up on those cold winter days to keep the CO from entering your home.