How to Avoid the Risks of Carbon Monoxide from Your Furnace
If you have a gas furnace in your home, you face the risks of carbon monoxide emissions entering your home from your furnace. You can protect your family from these harmful emissions, though, and you can do this in several ways. Here are a few important things to know about carbon monoxide, how it enters your home and how to stop it from becoming a problem.
What Is Carbon Monoxide and How Does It Get in Your Home?
Carbon monoxide is a gas that is completely odorless and colorless. In other words, you never know when it is present because you cannot see or smell it. This is what makes carbon monoxide such a dangerous gas.Any type of furnace or device that requires gas creates carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is a byproduct of gas. In other words, when you use gas to power a device, the reaction results in the production of carbon monoxide.The problem with carbon monoxide is that it is deadly. If you breathe it in, you can get sick, and you could die if you breathe it in too long. The main symptoms people experience from carbon monoxide poisoning are flu-like symptoms, but there are other symptoms too.
How Can You Reduce the Gases in Your Furnace?
When an HVAC company installs a furnace, they vent it so that the harmful gases produced exit the home through a flue pipe. As long as this exit process works properly, you will not have carbon monoxide in your house. However, you could have a problem if a component of the furnace cracks or develops a hole. This allows the carbon monoxide to escape and enter your house.The best way to prevent carbon monoxide from entering your house is to keep your furnace maintained, and you can do this by having a company inspect the furnace each year. During the inspection, the technician will make sure everything is working properly and will test your system for leaks. If the technician finds any leaks, he or she will repair the problem areas.
What Other Steps Can You Take to Protect Your Family?
One of the best things you can do other than routine furnace maintenance is to install carbon monoxide detectors. These small detectors are like smoke detectors, but the alarm on these detectors only goes off to alert you if there is carbon monoxide detected in the air.After installing a carbon monoxide detector, make sure you replace the batteries each year when you replace the batteries in your smoke detectors. You should also make sure you place the detector close enough to your furnace for it to detect fumes but still close enough to your living space that you can hear the alarm if it goes off.Another step to take is to change your furnace filter regularly. When the filter gets clogged, it limits airflow to the furnace. This restriction of airflow makes it more likely for carbon monoxide to leak out of the device.An HVAC company can provide you with a carbon monoxide detector and change your furnace filter for you when they come to perform their routine inspections. They can also help you find other ways to reduce the risks of carbon monoxide leaking into your home.If you have concerns with your furnace and the potential for toxic gases in your home, contact Alabama Climate Control, Inc. We can help you find ways to reduce the harmful gases that come from your furnace, and we can help you learn more about protecting your family from carbon monoxide poisoning in your home.