Tag Archives: co detectors

Tis the Season to Replace Detectors Around Your House

Tis the Season to Replace Detectors Around Your HouseThe signs that winter is coming are everywhere — crisp, cold mornings and pumpkin spice lattes abound. This also means you’ll likely be spending more time indoors for the next few months, warming your home with your heating system. Rest assured that your house is not only a cozy place to retreat to, but also a safe one, by checking your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors today.

Checking Your Detectors

It’s advised that you check the batteries on your detectors monthly by simply pressing the “test” button on them. If you don’t hear a sound when you test them, it’s time to install new batteries.

Although your alarms may sound with that pesky, attention-getting chirp when it’s time to replace the batteries, there is no obvious indication when your detectors have reached the end of their lives. Detectors that have reached their expiration should be replaced immediately. The following tips will help you ensure your detectors are in proper working order in your home:

  • Remove detectors from your ceilings and walls and check the manufacture date on the back of them to find out how old they are.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors last on average between 5 to 7 years.
  • Smoke detectors last about 10 years.
  • Position carbon monoxide detectors on all of the levels in your home. They should be installed in hallways close to bedrooms, at least 15 feet away from fuel-burning appliances and at least 15 inches from ceilings.
  • Smoke detectors should be on every level of your home, in each bedroom and outside of bedrooms (i.e. hallways). Larger homes may need more detectors than this.

When It’s Time to Replace Detectors

There are detectors that offer digital displays and some models even come with voice alerts. Smoke detectors can be interconnected — when one sounds, they all start to sound, quickly alerting you to a problem. Carbon monoxide detectors with a “fuel-cell electrochemical” sensor are the most accurate.

For more information on how to check or replace detectors, please feel free to contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling anytime. We’ve been proudly serving the Portland area since 1976.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Winter Safety Precautions for Your Canby Home

Winter Safety Precautions for Your Canby HomeNow that winter is approaching, it’s time to take smart steps to protect your family from hazards like carbon monoxide (CO) exposure, and prevent unnecessary damage to your home. Taking the following winter home safety precautions can keep you warm and secure throughout the heating season.

Schedule Heating System Service

To ensure that your heating system operates reliably and safely this winter, have it inspected, cleaned, and tuned up by an experienced HVAC technician. During routine maintenance, your technician performs vital safety-related tasks, like checking the condition of the heat exchanger, testing system safety controls, checking the electrical wiring and tightening the connections, and inspecting and cleaning the burner.

Check Your Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Carbon monoxide is a deadly gas that’s a byproduct of incomplete combustion in fuel-burning equipment like your gas furnace. You can’t see, taste or smell the gas, so your only warning of its presence is the alarm on a functional CO detector. To make sure your detectors are working properly, put fresh batteries in each one and test them once a month. If any of your CO detectors fails to beep when tested, replace it immediately.

Clean Up Around the Furnace

If you have items stored near the furnace that are flammable or may block airflow, move them. Combustibles like paint thinner, charcoal lighter fluid, and any products in aerosol cans should be stored in a ventilated location that’s nowhere near the furnace.

Have the Furnace Flue Cleaned

Have a chimney sweep clean out the flue to remove built-up soot and debris that might cause a blockage, so harmful combustion fumes can vent properly.

Protect Your Vulnerable Water Pipes

Frozen, burst water lines can cause considerable mess and costly damage. To keep pipes from freezing, drain the water line to your outdoor faucet and shield it with an insulated cover. If you have water pipes installed in an unconditioned attic, garage or crawl space, wrap them in foam insulation sleeves or self-regulating heat tape.

To learn more winter home safety tips for your Portland-area home, or to schedule heating system maintenance, contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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How You Should Check Your Carbon Monoxide Detectors

How You Should Check Your Carbon Monoxide DetectorsWhen you being running your heating system and close your home against the winter air, the risk of carbon monoxide (CO) exposure increases. You can lessen the threat it poses to your family’s well-being by keeping your furnace professionally maintained. For complete protection though, you also need to know how to check and maintain the carbon monoxide detectors in your home.

Why Checking Your Carbon Monoxide Detectors Matters

Carbon monoxide gas is a byproduct of incomplete combustion of any fossil fuel, so it can be produced by your gas furnace, hot water heater or kitchen range. In small amounts, CO causes flu-like illness. Exposure to a high level of the gas can render a person unconscious and quickly cause death. Since CO has no color, taste or odor, you won’t know you’re at risk unless a carbon monoxide detector sounds a warning alarm.

Advice for Testing and Maintaining Your CO Detectors

Here’s some helpful advice on how to test and maintain well-functioning carbon monoxide detectors in your home:

  • Read the manual for each detection device you own and follow any brand-specific guidelines from the manufacturer for proper use and care.
  • In general, it’s wise to check the functionality of your detectors monthly by holding down the “test” button for a few seconds. If you don’t hear a beep, put in new batteries and test again. If the device makes no sound, it needs replacement.
  • Replace all device batteries twice a year. You might find it easier to remember if you do this when you’re changing the clocks for daylight saving time.
  • CO detectors lose the ability to sense the gas after five years of use, so replace all of your devices when they reach that age. So you don’t forget to do so, choose a model with a replacement alert feature.
  • If you want plug-in or wired detectors, buy detectors with battery backup so they’ll still function if a power outage

Contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling for more advice about keeping your Portland home protected by checking your carbon monoxide detectors and properly maintaining your heating equipment.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Leena Robinson/Shutterstock”

Carbon Monoxide Exposure is Serious — Find Where it Hides Immediately

Carbon Monoxide Exposure is Serious -- Find Where it Hides ImmediatelyCarbon monoxide (CO) is a deadly gas that invades thousands of homes every year, and many homeowners don’t even know they have this common indoor air pollutant. This gas is completely colorless and odorless, and is a natural by-product of combustion. It’s always a good idea to have CO detectors in your home to protect against carbon monoxide exposure, and then tackle these common CO hiding places.

Gas Appliances and Heating

Your gas range, dryer, furnace and water heater are all top culprits for carbon monoxide emissions. While these are designed to burn clean with little or no off-gassing, poorly maintained gas appliances may have a “dirty flame” that constantly gives off toxins. It’s critical to get these serviced regularly and replaced whenever necessary to minimize the risk of carbon monoxide exposure.

Fireplaces are beautiful and offer an excellent source of heat, but they don’t burn clean. Instead, the chimney and other ventilation apparatus are designed to move toxins out of your house to produce only clean, warm air. This only works as long as your chimney is well-maintained and clean, flues work properly, and filters and screens are in good working condition.

Vehicles and Lawn Equipment

The garage is a top source of carbon monoxide exposure, especially if you have an attached garage that has a door leading into your home. Never warm up your car in the garage with the door closed; exhaust fumes quickly build to a dangerous level. Gas-powered equipment such as lawn mowers and string trimmers also emit carbon monoxide, so never work on them indoors without adequate ventilation.

Diesel Generators

Generators are wonderful for protecting against power outages, but they are not intended to be anywhere inside a home. Have a professional install your generator, and then get regular air quality tests to ensure that diesel fumes aren’t seeping into the house.

If you have additional concerns about carbon monoxide in your home, please contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling for expert advice that could save your life. We have been serving the Portland, Oregon area since 1976 for all heating and cooling needs.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Creations/Shutterstock”