What is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a tasteless, colorless, odorless gas produced by burning fuel. Therefore, any fuel-burning appliance in your home is a potential CO source. When appliances are kept in good working condition, they produce little CO. Improperly operating appliances can produce fatal CO concentrations. Likewise, using charcoal indoors or running a car in a closed garage can cause CO poisoning.
What are the Symptoms of CO Poisoning?
Carbon monoxide can kill you. The initial symptoms of CO poisoning are similar to the flu (but without fever). They include: dizziness, nausea, fatigue, irregular breathing, and headache. If you have any of these symptoms, and if you feel better when you go outside your home and symptoms reappear once you’re back inside, you may have CO poisoning.
What are the Requirements for CO Detectors?
California Senate Bill 183 requires CO alarms in all new and existing single and multifamily homes. CO alarms for existing single family homes are required at this time and will be required for multifamily homes as of January 2013. For new construction and remodel requirements, contact the Huntington Beach Department of Planning and Building at (714)536-5271.
For existing buildings the requirements include:
What can you do?
o Decreasing hot water supply
o Inability of furnace to heat house or runs constantly
o Sooting, especially on appliances
o Unfamiliar or burning odor
CO detectors approved by the Office of the State Fire Marshal can be found here.
For information about Fire Department education programs, please see Safety Education.
Solar chimneys are passive solar ventilation systems. Shafts connect the interior and exterior of the building. The functioning can be improved by glazing and using thermal mass materials.