January Safety Topic

Carbon monoxide, or CO, is a toxic gas that can occur in homes and buildings where combustion by-products are generated. If not properly vented, this toxic gas is allowed to accumulate. Carbon Monoxide (CO) is an colorless, odorless, tasteless poison. CO is readily absorbed in the body and can impair the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood (hemoglobin). Today we will briefly cover some topics on how to stay safe, and keep our customers safe.

There are many sources and causes of Carbon Monoxide, however in the HVAC Trade the most likely cause for Carbon Monoxide is incomplete combustion. The source can be a combination of a compromised heat exchanger, boiler sections leaking and plugged or compromised chimney. This is why it is so important to always take a proper combustion test, exam the condition of the chimney, and report your findings to the occupants of the property and document these findings.

Read more about Chimney and draft issues in the Nora Silver Manual

If you encounter a house with a high CO level (see chart below), remove yourself from the home and call the fire department immediately?

CO levels
Exert from NORA Silver OTM Chapter 7, Figure 7.5 Carbon Monoxide Levels of Concern.
Industry Educator & Consultant
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