Carbon Monoxide Safety
Because it is impossible to see, taste or smell the toxic fumes, CO can kill you before you are aware it is in your home. Carbon monoxide inhibits oxygen intake in the blood and can lead to death. At lower levels of exposure, CO causes mild effects that are often mistaken for the flu. These symptoms include headaches, dizziness, disorientation, nausea and fatigue. For more information see: EPA, “An Introduction to Air Quality”
At low concentrations, fatigue in healthy people and chest pain in people with heart disease. At higher concentrations, impaired vision and coordination; headaches; dizziness; confusion; nausea. Can cause flu-like symptoms that clear up after leaving home. Fatal at very high concentrations. At moderate concentrations, angina, impaired vision, and reduced brain function may result. At higher concentrations, CO exposure can be fatal.
Why You Should be Concerned About Carbon Monoxide
Air sealing all or part of a home can affect how efficiently gas-burning appliances, water heaters, and furnaces work. These devices rely on a certain amount of fresh air supply to burn efficiently and to help exhaust the emissions created by burning fuel. Once a home gets sealed tightly, those fuel emissions could “backdraft” down a a flue and into the home.
Whenever we do an energy audit, we run what’s known as a “Combustion Safety Test”, using standards set by BPI as well as OSHA to make sure that your combustion appliances are running at optimum efficiency, as well as not back-drafting harmful gases into your living space. If any air sealing measures are installed, we conduct the testing again to make sure that the work had no negative impact on the equipment. Carbon monoxide is a serious concern and we want to be sure you and your family are safe.