Carbon monoxide testing

What is carbon monoxide?

Carbon monoxide (or CO) is a gas that is produced by burning any type of fuel. As this gas is colourless, tasteless and (even more dangerous) odourless. A carbon monoxide poisoning can lead to death quite suddenly because it replaces the oxygen in your blood. And without oxygen in your blood you will die. Most fatal carbon monoxide poisonings happen while people are asleep, due to the gas not having a smell. The most difficult thing therefore is to know which appliance is putting you at risk when. It can literally be anything from you gas fireplace to your gas radiator heater. And you won’t know it is poisoning you until, in some cases, it is too late.

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

Carbon monoxide poisoning is particularly hard to detect because of the wide range of symptoms that can be associated with many illnesses. The most common symptoms include:

Vomiting

Tiredness

Nausea

Drowsiness

Confusion

Severe headache

Difficulty breathing

The risks many occur in poorly ventilated areas and therefore are more common to happen in winter when everyone has cranked up the heat and all the windows closed. Instead of relying on detecting it, please try to avoid it.

Prevention

Luckily it is not all bad news that we’re sharing here. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be quite easily prevented by having your appliances tested annually by an expert from Prime Plumbing & Gasfitting. We have specialised equipment that detects the smallest of particles of the gas. Carbon monoxide detectors are available however, they detect far less parts per million than de specific carbon monoxide equipment our plumbers works with. Testing individual appliances is much more effective than relying on a carbon monoxide detector.

An easy way to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning is to remember SAFE:

* Stay away from burning fuels indoors except in devices such as stoves or furnaces that are made for safe use.

* Avoid the use of non-vented combustion appliances.

* For the annual testing of your appliances use a licensed plumber from Prime Plumbing and Gasfitting.

* Ensure your family’s safety – don’t take any risks.