Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless toxic gas that’s a by-product of burning fuel, such as gas, oil and wood. A well-maintained furnace routes CO away from the house through the chimney. However, a leak can present a health risk to the occupants of your home. In this blog, your premier heating and air conditioning contractor Premier Comfort Heating and Air discusses how to keep your home safe from carbon monoxide leaks.
Causes of Carbon Monoxide Leaks
Furnaces are designed to disperse carbon monoxide through flues and chimneys, so it’s important to make sure that nothing impedes these components. While leaks can originate from the pipes leading from the furnace or boiler, the more common cause is blocked flues and chimneys. Instead of dispersing carbon monoxide into the open air, the CO becomes trapped indoors, which can then result in carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide reduces the body’s ability to transport oxygen, resulting in a form of asphyxiation. Sufferers of carbon monoxide poisoning can be treated by immediately breathing pure oxygen to replace the CO in the blood. In some cases, a hyperbaric oxygen therapy room is used to speed up the oxygen replacement process.
How to Prevent Carbon Monoxide Leaks
For safety reasons, traditional and hybrid heating systems should be regularly inspected. Schedule a heating system inspection a few weeks before the winter season begins. Make sure the flue damper seals properly and can be opened and closed without trouble. You may need to have flues and chimneys professionally cleaned if you find creosote, an oil-like by-product of burning fuel. HVAC vents should likewise be inspected for proper airflow.
In addition to regular maintenance and inspections, you can also install CO detectors and alarms. They work much like smoke detectors, but are triggered by increased CO levels. Remember that CO is odorless and colorless, which is why you won’t be able to detect its presence otherwise.
Call Premier Comfort for All Your HVAC Needs
Premier Comfort Heating and Air is your leading provider of heating and air conditioning repair services. Give us a call at (720) 613-5904 or fill out our contact form. We serve customers in Brighton, CO, and surrounding areas.