JACKSON, Miss. – Colorless, tasteless, odorless carbon monoxide can kill without even knowing it’s in your home. That’s why it’s so dangerous. You can’t see it, smell it or taste the gas coming from any sort of fueling appliance in or outside your house. According to the CDC there’s about 500 deaths every year from carbon monoxide poisoning.
You may not know it’s there yourself, but getting a good carbon monoxide detector could tell you and save your life. It’s an easy thing to overlook, especially if it’s never gone off, but it’s critical to have a few of these in your home.
When buying a detector check the manufacturing label to know how long it will last and keep up with the battery life in them. Most will last typically up to five years. It doesn’t matter if the detector is placed high or low in your house. It will detect the carbon monoxide just the same. The gas weighs just slightly less than air and will rise so the detector will identify it regardless of where it’s placed. Do not put a detector next to an oven or generator because a small amount of gas will come out of that and you will falsely be notified of a dangerous amount of carbon dioxide entering the house. You should have at least one detector per floor.
Richard Hanks the Division Chief for the Clinton Fire Department said, “There’s no way to really know it’s there without a detector. It’s important to have the detectors where it will wake you up when you’re asleep because that’s how most fatalities happen, in their sleep.”
You can buy a detector from your local Wal-Mart or Home Depot with manufacturing instructions that tell you where to place them, how many you should have in your home and how often to check them.