Women For Action Blog Carbon Monoxide Sniffer

Carbon Monoxide Sniffer

The stealthy killer known as carbon monoxide sniffer is a gas that can be fatal at high concentrations. The colorless, odorless, tasteless substance is produced when fuels like gasoline, kerosene, wood, propane or natural gas are burned incompletely and cannot be vented correctly. It seeps into houses through leaky vents or chimneys and can also build up in vehicles and portable generators when they are run indoors. Carbon monoxide poisoning claims hundreds of lives each year in the US, mostly in homes.

Fortunately, CO detectors, also called carbon monoxide monitors, can help keep your family safe by sounding an alarm when the gas builds up to dangerous levels. The sensors use a variety of methods to detect CO, including changing color or electrical resistance. The most affordable detectors, which are often referred to as “detector strips,” consist of pads with a colored gel that changes when exposed to CO. The pad’s color is detected by a separate sensor, which then triggers the alarm. The detector must be placed in a CO-free environment to reset the alarm.

Sniffing Out Danger: Carbon Monoxide Sniffers and Their Uses

More sophisticated detectors include electronic displays that show a progressively increasing carbon monoxide reading, in parts per million (PPM), over an eight-hour period. They may also have other useful features, such as the ability to be connected together so that all units produce alarm sounds simultaneously when any one detects dangerous levels of carbon monoxide.

When a carbon monoxide detector alarms, leave the building and call emergency services. The CDC recommends that homeowners examine their gas and oil furnaces, stoves, vents and chimneys on a regular basis.

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