Carbon monoxide poisoning is a real danger. In fact, every year there are cases of people getting extremely ill or even dying from CO poisoning. The risk of carbon monoxide poisoning is higher during the winter because of the need to provide heating. Any home with a fuel burning heating system has the risk of CO poisoning. Additionally, your car also releases carbon monoxide. During winter, you are likely to leave your car running in order to warm up, so there is an elevated risk there. Here are a few tips on reducing the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning in your home.
Reducing the Risk of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
There are many things that you can do to reduce the risk of CO poisoning. In your home, make sure that your heating systems are properly ventilated. This may require clearing of exterior vent pipes during big winter storms. Have your heating system serviced annually to ensure proper functioning. Avoid operating heating elements that are not intended for indoor use. This includes propane heating units intended for outdoor camping. If you leave your car running in the garage, make sure the garage door is open and the door leading into your home is closed.
The Importance of Carbon Monoxide Detectors
An important preventative measure is to install carbon monoxide detectors in your home. CO detectors are actually required by Massachusetts law. Unfortunately, many homes fail to have operating detectors. A working CO detector can provide critical early warnings of an unsafe condition in your home. Install detectors on every level of your home and outside of bedroom areas. Additionally, replace batteries and test the units every year, just to be safe.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is a serious and potentially deadly danger. Preventative measures should be a priority during the winter months where the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning is highest. By being aware of the dangers and taking steps to reduce and detect it, you can help keep your family safe this winter.