Now that winter is here in Bloomington, it is a good time to think keeping your family safe from carbon monoxide. Because carbon monoxide is an odorless gas, it is especially dangerous and can kill if someone is over exposed to it. It is known as a silent killer as most often its affects are not noticed until it is too late, with victims simply falling asleep and not waking up if they breathe in too much of the gas. Since 2006 Illinois has had a state law in place requiring the installation of carbon monoxide detectors in homes.
The law in Illinois requires one carbon monoxide detector to be installed within 15 feet of any bedroom of a housing unit. If you live in a larger home, this could mean more than one device. For those that rent, the landlord is required to provide the detectors while tenants are required to ensure they are working properly. Just like smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors only work well when their batteries are regularly replaced, so testing the devices often is a good idea.
There has been an unfortunate increase in carbon monoxide expose over the last 20 years or so, due in large part from our efforts to make our homes more energy efficient. With better sealed windows and doors, we have fewer air drafts in our homes. This is wonderful when it comes to saving money on our heating bills, but it can also have a downside. If a home is so well sealed that little to no air flow to the outside is occurring, this can also mean that carbon dioxide can build up as there is no outlet for it, and this is where families can get in trouble. The best fix for this is a carbon monoxide detector.
Carbon monoxide is produced through the incomplete combustion of carbon of any organic fuel such as coal, gas or oil. If there is not enough oxygen available as these fuels burn, carbon monoxide can result. Homes heated by gas or oil, or which have wood burning fireplaces or stoves, have the potential to experience carbon monoxide build up. So too do homes with attached garages. If a car is kept running in a garage to warm it up on a wintery day, carbon monoxide fumes can potentially enter the home. Homes that are heated by combustible fuels and have attached garages are required to have carbon monoxide units.
The cold winter months are when over exposure occurs the most, so now is an ideal time to test your device. If you don’t have a detector and should, now is the time to get one installed. If you are ready to sell or buy a home, I am here to provide you with the best service possible. If you have any questions, or are ready to find the home of your dreams, I am here for you. Please contact me by phone, 309-825-2078.