Carbon Monoxide

Most people know that carbon monoxide (Co) gas is dangerous. Illinois state law, effective January 1, 2007 mandates that a carbon Monoxide (Co) detector must be placed within 15 feet of every room in a house used for sleeping purposes. Follow the manufacturers instructions for proper installation. Potential sources for Co are automobiles, gas appliances, gas furnaces, chimneys, charcoal grills, and portable kerosene heats. Carbon monoxide is tasteless, poisonous, and dangerous to people. Symptoms of poisoning caused by carbon monoxide exposer may initially by similar to the flu. Symptoms may include the following: burning eyes, headache, fatigue, nausea, dizziness, confusion, shortness of breath, and unconsciousness.

Recognizing CO:

  • Black soot on or around air register, flues, burners of access openings to appliances
  • Condensation of moisture on inside windows NOT created by humidifiers and vaporizers
  • Dead or dying houseplants and animals
  • Abnormal flame characteristics (yellow gas flame not blue; flame flame rolling out of appliance, flame lifting off burner)
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector that will sound an alarm when CO build up reaches unsafe levels

When you suspect Carbon Monoxide is in your home or a CO detector is sounding:

  • Open doors and windows to ventilate
  • Call 9-1-1
  • Call for medical help if anyone is experiencing symptoms of CO poisoning
  • Call a plumbing and heating professional to inspect appliances for possible problems