The long summer has come to an end, and it’s time to gear up for winter. But before you turn on your heater up for the first time, consider this statistic from the Consumer Product Safety Commission: more than 1,500 people in the U.S. are killed every year by carbon monoxide poisoning in the home.
Preventing carbon monoxide poisoning requires some vigilance, but these tips are simple and straightforward, and they can save your life:
- Never leave your car running in an attached garage, even if the garage door is open.
- Leave the repair of fuel-burning appliances to the experts. Faulty venting or ductwork can lead to carbon monoxide inside your house.
- Never use a gas range or oven to heat your home.
- Never use charcoal grills or camp stoves inside the house or garage.
- Do not use gasoline-powered tools inside the house. If you must, make sure the exhaust is vented outside.
- Never allow anyone to sleep in a room with a gas appliance that isn’t connected to an exterior vent.
Carbon Monoxide is an invisible, odorless, poisonous gas, and overexposure to it can cause flu-like symptoms, serious sickness, and even death. Any appliance in your home that burns fuel (gas furnace, gas stove, gas hot water heater) creates carbon monoxide when on. As you increase your use of fuel burning appliances over the winter months, you must keep in mind the increased risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.