A Primer on Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide is a carbon atom and an oxygen atom with three bonds between them. One interesting property is that it’s flammable. In fact, we used it in combination with some other gasses as a substitute for gasoline during World War II. It is colorless and only slightly lighter than air. It is also poisonous to humans, pets and any creature that uses hemoglobin to metabolize oxygen, which is most animals. It can form in your home without you even knowing it is there.
So How Does It Get In My Home?
Carbon monoxide is formed from the incomplete combustion of many different fuels like propane, natural gas, coal, and wood, just to name a few.
If your stove or furnace is not combusting the gas properly, then it produces CO (Carbon Monoxide). The CO itself is flammable, but the real trouble is that you can’t detect it without a CO alarm. You cannot taste it, see it, or smell it.
How do I know if it is Carbon Monoxide
When you are being poisoned by CO, you may feel flu-like symptoms. If you live in a house with others, everyone might feel bad at the same time, including pets. If you step outside in the fresh air, you will start feeling better.
The problem with this is that at the concentration levels it takes to make you feel sick, it is already killing you. And CO kills in minutes rather than hours or days.
Prevention is the best way to deal with CO and its tragic results. Our technicians at Acme AC carry CO detectors with them, as well as combustion meters. These tools can help you detect and prevent incomplete combustion in your homes furnace. We also can install CO detectors in your home so that, should your furnace stop working properly, much like a smoke alarm, these detectors will let you know that something is wrong.
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