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Carbon Monoxide Awareness

When your furnace kicks on, be sure carbon monoxide isn’t being kicked out.

Every winter when the temperature drops, your furnace can become a silent killer. Gas- and oil-burning furnaces produce carbon monoxide (CO).  CO is an invisible, odorless, poison gas that kills hundreds every year and makes thousands sick.

Keep Your Family Safe this Winter

✔ Have your furnace inspected every year.

✔Install battery-operated or battery back-up CO detectors near every sleeping area and in main living areas.  Be careful not to place detectors within fifteen feet of fuel burning appliances (furnace/range) or near bathrooms, as these areas may cause false alarms.  At a minimum, place one detector on every level of your home.  Average cost of a high quality CO detector is about $50.00.

✔Check CO detectors regularly to be sure they are functioning properly, such as during daylight savings time changes.

Know the Properties of Carbon Monoxide

  • The vapor density of CO is 0.968, or almost equivalent to that of air. CO will tend to stay put or gradually rise. However, keep in mind that if from a furnace, the CO may be contained in warm air and the CO will rise with the warmer air or circulate through your house in the duct work.
  • If inhaled or absorbed through the skin, CO is toxic and can be fatal at higher concentrations.
  • CO is extremely flammable. Its flammable range is wide at 12% - 75% by volume in air.
  • The Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) of CO is 50 ppm.

For more information on carbon monoxide in the workplace, refer to this OSHA Fact Sheet to review with personnel:

https://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/carbonmonoxide-factsheet.pdf

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