In Virginia Beach, Virginia, all property owners are required to install working smoke detectors in their homes. The same requirements do not apply to carbon monoxide detectors, but that doesn’t make them any less important. In fact, because of its odorless, colorless, tasteless nature, it is much more difficult to identify, despite being incredibly dangerous. Extended exposure to carbon monoxide can cause nausea, confusion, shortness of breath, and loss of consciousness, and in the worst cases, even death.
Due to increased use of fuel-burning furnaces and a decrease in fresh air moving through the home over the cooler months, winter is the season with the highest chance of carbon monoxide poisoning. That’s why it’s critical for families to familiarize themselves with how to prevent such an accident from taking place. Here are some strategies to employ this winter:
- Keep Your Generators Outside
While it may seem inconvenient to keep your generator outside, generators release large amounts of carbon monoxide and should never be kept indoors.
- Schedule Routine Maintenance for Furnaces and Fireplaces
When furnaces aren’t functioning correctly, they can release carbon monoxide. Scheduling regular maintenance appointments for furnaces and other heating sources can effectively prevent any such malfunctions. Fireplaces may also be used to provide heat for the family, but if there are any blockages in the flue, the carbon monoxide may end up trapped inside the home. Schedule a chimney cleaning too.
- Vent Your Kitchen When the Stove Is in Use
If you have a stove or oven that utilizes gas, you should be aware that it also produces carbon monoxide. This is why it’s important that you vent your kitchen regularly while cooking. Depending on the situation, you can also open a window for a few minutes for further ventilation.
Employing these strategies is a great way to minimize the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, but accidents can still happen. Something as simple as forgetting to shut off one of the burners in the kitchen could result in excessive amounts of carbon monoxide in your home. That’s why at Nipper Electric, our team is equipped to identify the most at-risk areas of the house and install or replace carbon monoxide detectors for you. To get started, simply fill out our online form or give us a call at 757-842-1710.