Smoke detectors are usually one of the first things that come to mind when talking about home safety, and it's easy to see why. They are great for detecting critical fires, and they provide you and your family time to escape to safety or to extinguish small fires before they spread. However, they have one crucial downfall, they still only detect smoke.
That's why we here at Mister Sparky strongly recommend also installing carbon monoxide detectors. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, toxic gas that is produced as a by-product of any fuel burning appliance in your home. It can be produced by many things such as your car, grill, fireplace, gas dryers, gas stoves, water heaters, etc.
Because it can exist undetected by human senses, it is among one of the most dangerous home hazards and can kill entire families within hours or even minutes. However, with an up-to-date carbon monoxide detector, this is 100% preventable.
There are 3 types of carbon monoxide detectors currently available:
- Biomimetic: Features a small chamber filled with a gel that mimics carbon monoxide’s effects on the blood. When the gel contacts carbon monoxide particles, it changes color, and that color change is detected by an electronic sensor that triggers the alarm.
- Metal Oxide Semiconductor: A small silica chip is what interacts with carbon monoxide in the atmosphere. This interaction causes a drop in the current flowing through the chip, similar to the way ionization smoke detectors work. When the voltage drops, the alarm sounds.
- Electrochemical: The most sensitive carbon monoxide detectors use electrochemical sensors that consist of electrodes submerged in chemical baths. These are less commonly used for household safety but have a variety of industrial applications.
You can choose any of these detectors, but they should be maintained over the course of time and installed on every floor of your home. You can also replace the batteries frequently and replace the detector itself every 5-7 years to ensure the safest environment for your home. If you have any additional questions, or need help with the installation process contact us online or call today at (210) 899-2430.