Carbon monoxide may be one of the most lethal, potential problems we live with every day. Carbon monoxide has no smell or taste. Your lungs can’t tell when they are breathing in carbon monoxide and warn you about its implications.

10 Things In Your Home That Can Increase Your Risk Of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

When carbon monoxide enters your body, it attaches to the hemoglobin with 200 times greater binding affinity than oxygen. Hemoglobin is what carries the oxygen all over your body, sustaining life as we know it. If oxygen can’t bind to the hemoglobin because CO is already occupying the space, the various parts of your body become oxygen starved, meaning they aren’t getting enough nutrition to sustain life.

It can happen quickly or slowly, depending on the levels of CO entering your body. With an estimated 200 people dying each year from CO poisoning, monitoring your home for carbon monoxide levels is something to take seriously. Problem can arise from many things, including:

1. Gas range

2. Gas dryer

3. Gas fireplace

4. Boiler

5. Central heating system

6. Water heater

7. Blocked flues and chimneys in your home can stop CO gas from escaping

8. Smoking cigarettes causes a rise in CO blood levels

9. Gas grills and fire pits

10. A running car will produce a lethal level of CO in a closed garage within ten minutes

Anything in your home using gas to operate can be a potential risk hazard if not properly maintained. New equipment that is properly installed and properly maintained should produce negligible quantities of CO gas. If the appliance isn’t serviced regularly or is operated outside of its guidelines has an increased risk of being a problem.

What can you do?

First, make sure you use all appliances and equipment according to manufacturers guidelines. When in doubt, call in a professional to make sure you are meeting guidelines.

Next, make sure you have a properly operating carbon monoxide detector system within your home. Consult with a professional to determine proper location.

Finally, maintain all appliances on a regular basis. Its important to call in a gas professional – a plumber has full gas certification – to check out all appliances, especially at the beginning of the season when you’ll be using an appliance more.

Its always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to keeping your home and your family safe.