Carbon Monoxide Poisoning and Detection
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless and potentially dangerous gas produced when fuel (heating oil, propane, kerosene, charcoal, gasoline, wood or natural gas) is burned without enough air for complete combustion. If inhaled in large quantities for a prolonged time period, carbon monoxide can cause unconsciousness, brain damage and even death.
If you, or anyone in your household, experience these symptoms, immediately open windows and doors to ventilate your home, then move outside and call Summit Natural Gas at 1-800-909-7642 or 911 in an emergency suspected to be Carbon Monoxide related.
There are a number of steps you can take to minimize the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning, including:
- Have your chimney, appliances and heating equipment inspected and tested by a qualified professional every year.
- Install ventless heaters in accordance with manufacturer specifications, never using them as a primary heat source.
- Install at least one carbon monoxide detector in your home. Do not rely on carbon monoxide detectors as a substitute for maintaining appliances, heating equipment or chimneys. If you do choose to install a carbon monoxide detector, use it as an additional preventative measure.
- Clear snow and ice from exhaust vents and intake air vents for gas appliances to prevent carbon monoxide from accumulating in your home.
- Never use a gas oven or stovetop for heating your home.
- Never run a gasoline engine (such as a gasoline generator) or an automobile in an enclosed space.
- Never use a portable charcoal or propane grill indoors.