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Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

North Carolina plumber Four Seasons Plumbing is providing homeowners with safety tips to avoid potentially deadly…

  • January 27, 2020

North Carolina plumber Four Seasons Plumbing is providing homeowners with safety tips to avoid potentially deadly carbon monoxide (CO) encounters.

January is National Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month, and during the winter, hospitals see more than three times as many patients suffering from CO poisoning. Death can result with little warning from prolonged exposure to CO.

“We see more cases of carbon monoxide poisoning this time of year than any other,” said Max Rose, owner of Four Seasons Plumbing. “Although CO is invisible and odorless, it’s really harmful and can send families to the hospital, or worse. Luckily, there are a few ways to prevent CO poisoning and stay safe this winter.”

Here are a few ways to prevent CO buildup, or detect it if it occurs:

Don’t burn fuel indoors. Since CO is produced when fuel burns, gas-powered generators, propane space heaters, grills and even open ovens can all be sources of CO. Even if the power goes out, keep these items outdoors where they belong.

Install and maintain CO detectors. Without a detector, there’s no way to know if you’ve been exposed to CO. Make sure every level of a home has a detector, and the batteries are replaced regularly. CO detectors also expire after a few years, so homeowners should replace them when necessary.

Keep chimneys and flues clear. Even a beautiful fireplace can be dangerous if the chimney isn’t venting effectively. Have the chimney, and flues for any heating appliances, cleaned regularly.

Invest in regular maintenance. Gas-powered heating systems, like water heaters and furnaces, can leak CO into the air around them. Seasonal maintenance can ensure these systems are operating properly.

“When it comes to carbon monoxide, there’s no such thing as being too cautious,” Rose said. “Western North Carolina homeowners are required to have detectors installed. If you don’t have any, or they need to be replaced, an expert can make sure they’re installed right and functioning correctly.”