Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips

What is carbon monoxide?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless, tasteless and poisonous gas – you will probably not know it is actually there.

CO is a silent killer that is released when your boiler, cooker, fireplace or other combustion based devices within your property do not get the correct amount of ventilation or the fuel is not burning correctly. This could be because of an installation defect or a faulty appliance.

“In the United Kingdom, more than 50 people die from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning every year and 200 people are left seriously ill.” (National Health Service Website)

What can you do to protect your family from carbon monoxide?

Ensure you get your gas appliances checked at least once a year and have a carbon monoxide alarm installed

Booking an annual service every year with your heating contractor, where by a Gas Safe certified operative will check your appliances will give you complete piece of mind. In the worst case scenario, should there be a problem our engineer will identify and discuss with you the needed action to rectify and make safe. To book a service please call us on 0800 731 33 44 – if you are a landlord we can complete your Landlord’s Gas Safety Record at the same time.

Carbon Monoxide Alarm

Our carbon monoxide alarm is:

  • Hassle Free with no maintenance – the only thing you may have to do is change the batteries after a few years
  • Wireless so can be put anywhere in the property

If you are renting and do not own your own home who is responsible for your appliances?

This is your landlords responsibility.

When renting a property your landlord has a responsibility to ensure that the appliances are in safe working order. It is your landlord’s responsibility to:

  • Keep a record of previous safety checks and offer you a copy upon request
  • Arrange annually for a Gas Safe registered engineer to conduct a safety check on the combustible appliances within the property
  • Ensure all combustible appliances and associated pipework are in safe and working order
  • Flue or chimney blockages
  • Your pilot light on your boiler should burn blue. If the flame is a yellow or red or orange colour you could have a CO leak and should arrange for an engineer to attend your property
  • Stains or discolouration on your boiler/ water heater and soot on your fire place could be an indication of a CO leak
  • Check to make sure that doors, windows and vents are clear of obstruction and blockages

How do I know if I have carbon monoxide poisoning?

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Symptoms

The symptoms are similar to the flu

Early signs are easy to confuse with other conditions such as a viral infection, the flue or a cold, food poisoning and exhaustion. Some of the symptoms to look out for are:

  • Headaches or dizziness
  • Breathlessness
  • Nausea
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Tiredness
  • Pains in the chest or stomach
  • Erratic behaviour
  • Visual problems

Should you wish for further information please visit the NHS Website page on Carbon Monoxide Poisoning.