An Invisible Threat Could Be Lurking in Your Home

Here are Six Ways to Prevent CO Exposure

More families are turning up the thermostat to stay warm during the chillier nights, and by doing so they could be putting their loved ones at risk. With temperatures starting to drop every night, the Insurance Center encourages homeowners to be mindful of preventing carbon monoxide (CO) exposure this season.

The colorless, odorless fume is produced by everyday appliances and activities. If homeowners are not cautious, family members and guests could be the victims of accidental carbon monoxide poisoning.

“Simply cooking supper or firing up your heating system for the first time this season could introduce dangerous levels of CO into your home,” said Robert J. Sammon, President of The Insurance Center. “Most safety experts agree that taking a few precautions can significantly reduce the odds of CO poisoning in your home.”

Here are a few proven strategies that can help homeowners prevent elevated levels of CO:

Check Your Heating Systems

All heating systems should be checked annually by a professional to make sure it is functioning normally.

Replace the Batteries in Your CO Detector

Replace the batteries in your CO detector, and test the alarm to make sure it works. Homeowners should also test their CO alarm every month afterwards. 

Vent Your Fireplace or Stove

Make sure there is a way for fumes to escape your fireplace or stove. If these are not properly vented, CO could disperse throughout your home.

Avoid Using the Gas Oven for Heat

Ovens generate CO when used for long periods of time. Using the oven for heating is therefore very dangerous, and not recommended.

Never Leave a Car Running in an Attached Garage

Exhaust fumes from vehicles can quickly fill a garage. Breathing in these fumes in congested spaces could leave individuals incapacitated or worse.

Understand the CO Poisoning Signs

Individuals should seek immediate medical attention if they are experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning. Symptoms may include dizziness, nausea, and confusion, among other symptoms. 

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a threat that could exist in every home. Consider these suggestions to help keep your family and friends safe this season. If you are interested in other ways you can protect your family, we encourage you to call the Insurance Center at 603.542.2551.