Carbon monoxide (CO) is called ‘the silent killer’ because it’s odourless and tasteless, and you can’t see it.
There are potential carbon monoxide sources in the home that you might not even realize.
CO can be produced by anything that burns some type of fuel. This includes unvented fuel-burning space heaters, a gas, oil or wood-burning fireplace, the furnace or any other appliance. CO can build up in your home from a clogged or blocked chimney opening or an improperly installed or faulty appliance.
If carbon monoxide is present in your home it can have severe effects on your body. CO replaces the oxygen in your blood, resulting in the development of may develop flu-like symptoms and headaches. It’s accumulative and over time, builds up in your body causing dizziness, fatigue and difficulty thinking. CO poisoning can be fatal.
What can you do to protect your family?
Installing carbon monoxide poisoning alarms are important and are required by law in Canada. They are plug in or battery-operated units. Since carbon monoxide moves freely in the air, they should be as near as possible to sleeping areas in the home.
To work properly, the alarm unit must not be blocked by furniture or draperies.
Be sure to have fuel-burning appliances installed by a professional and serviced annually.