Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms are common in homes throughout America. Regular inspections and testing to ensure they stay in good operation are part of a home’s safety network. This is part of why, when we inspect your HVAC or furnace unit, we’ll test to make sure all of your alarms are working as well.
By burning fuel, carbon monoxide is created when your furnace is operating. A functioning system exhausts the CO out of your home safely but it’s still a good idea to install CO alarms in case something stops working (or an animal decides to nest inside the warm exhaust vent).
Likewise, proper use of smoke alarms is essential since flames and high heat are involved. It’s best to keep flammable objects away from your furnace and outside exhausts to prevent accidental fires. But you should also be wary of dirty filters and ventilation shafts which can restrict air flow. The lack of air movement allows for heat buildup which can cause hair and other particles in your filter to ignite.
Install Smoke Alarms:
Smoke is hot, usually hotter than the surrounding air in a room. The heat drafts it causes, force smoke up to the ceiling. This is why smoke alarms need to be installed close to the ceiling of a room, to catch smoke for certain since it will collect in the highest places first.
- Place on every floor
- Inside each hallway/bedroom
- In the basement on the ceiling at base of stairs
- Pitched ceilings, install between 4 inches and 3 feet from ceiling peak
- Don’t install near possible drafts (windows, doors, etc)
- Do not ever paint over a smoke detector
- Place near furnaces, fireplaces, and other high-heat sources or flames
Carbon Monoxide alarms, by comparison, should be centrally located. Carbon monoxide is odorless and invisible, plus it weighs roughly the same as air so it distributes evenly throughout a room based on air currents. For the sake of true safety, it’s best to place a CO alarm in every bedroom and in near any device that can create CO, such as your furnace.
- Interconnected systems
- Use Smoke and CO alarms
- Get a dual-sensor alarm (ionization and photoelectric)
The earlier you can detect a fire or CO leak in your home, the sooner you can respond and the more likely you are to survive the dangers of a fire or leak. Early warning is essential. Interconnected alarms notify each other of any detection, triggering every alarm at once for maximum alert. Combining both alarms in each room and using dual-sensor alarms for maximum detection increase the likelihood that you’ll catch a problem as it starts.
- Test regularly
- Replace batteries, or unit depending on type
If you’d like more information about how best to ensure your family’s safety in the event of a fire, you can read more at the National Fire Prevention Association. Again, as we inspect your furnace, we make sure to double check all smoke and CO alarms in the vicinity to help ensure maximum protection for your family.
Metro Plumbing, Heating, and Air Conditioning is the service company you want! Call us today at (423) 616-1025!