According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2,244 deaths associated with unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning were registered between 2010 and 2015 in the United States. Carbon monoxide is very dangerous because it reduces your body’s ability to transport oxygen, which is essential for proper bodily function. Most of these deaths (36%) occur in the winter months of December, January, and February, which is why prevention is very important this time of the year.
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Because carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas, a person can get poisoned without noticing it. Also, carbon monoxide and flu share similar symptoms, such as weakness, dizziness, and nausea. Unfortunately, these similarities may lead to confusion, and confusion leads to tragedies.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, the symptoms caused by carbon monoxide poisoning largely depend on two factors: gas concentration, which is measured in parts per million (ppm), and time of exposure. For example, while 200 ppm could cause mild headache after 2 hours of exposure, a concentration of 3,200 ppm might lead to unconsciousness after 30 minutes of exposure.
Now that you know some of the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, consider these tips to prevent it:
- Install a CO detector in your home and check the battery at least twice a year.
- Have your heating system and water heater inspected by reputable professionals every year.
- Ensure your chimney isn’t blocked by debris by cleaning it regularly, especially in the winter.
- Don’t use gas or charcoal grills indoors.
- Make sure that the exhaust pipe of your vehicle isn’t covered with snow.
- Never use portable generators near door, vents, or windows.
- Don’t use a gas oven to heat your home.
We hope these tips help protect you and your loved ones from carbon monoxide poisoning. As a final recommendation, we encourage you to book a home inspection to ensure that your family won’t be exposed to any hazards. When it comes to home inspections, you won’t find more qualified professionals than the ones here at Sherlock Home Inspectors. Contact us through our website or by giving us a call at (712) 274-9617.