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Carbon Monoxide Safety
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless and odorless gas that is released when heating oil, gasoline, diesel, propane,
kerosene, natural gas or wood burns without enough oxygen. Dangerous, even fatal, accumulations of CO can result
from a faulty appliance, clogged chimney, inadequate venting, or a build up of engine exhaust.
Here are some tips for protecting you and your family from CO poisoning.
• Have your heating system safety-checked each season and inspect vents, flue pipes and chimneys for corrosion and
• Don't warm up the car in an attached garage, even when the garage door is open.
• Never barbecue indoors or in an enclosed garage.
• Never use a gas stove/barbecue to heat your home. Using these natural gas appliances to heat your home may
cause a build-up of carbon monoxide gas.
• Install a fresh air duct for your wood-burning fireplace, or keep a window open while the fireplace is in use and until
the fire is completely extinguished.
• Install a CO detector approved to the latest UL2034, IA56-96 and CSA6.19 standards.
• Persistent, severe headaches
• Dizziness, blurred vision
• Nausea, vomiting
• Confusion, disorientation
• Sleepiness, fainting,
Leave your home immediately if you or members of your household notice any of these symptoms.
Protect your family with a reliable CO detector
Just as a smoke detector can warn you of a fire in your home, a carbon monoxide detector can let you know about the
presence of the "silent killer"-carbon monoxide gas. A properly installed CO detector can save the lives of your family
The risk of CO accumulation is greater in newer, tightly sealed homes with minimal ventilation. Know the warning signs:
persistent stuffy and smelly air, high humidity, the smell of exhaust fumes, soot around the outside of the fireplace,
furnace or chimney, and headaches that disappear when you spend time outside the house.
To protect your family, install CO detectors in or near bedrooms and on all levels of your home. Place a detector about
4.5 meters or 15 feet outside the room that houses your central combustible heating appliance.
Choose CO detectors with one of the following safety approval designations: CSA 6.19; UL 2034; IAS 696. CO
detectors, like any appliance, will not work if they are disconnected from the power source. Test battery-operated units
regularly and equip with a fresh battery at least once a year. Units wired directly into a household's electrical system
should be tested monthly.