Thursday, 8 January 2009

Staying Safe

During the cold Canadian winter it's common to read about carbon monoxide leaks. This family escaped with their lives, many others are not so lucky.

My basement contains three natural gas fired pieces of equipment: the furnace, the water heater and a fireplace, and there's another gas fireplace on the main floor, so I bought two of these CO detectors, one for the basement and one for upstairs.

They plug into the wall, and contain a rechargeable backup battery in case of power failure. CO is colourless, tasteless, odorless and a silent killer, so I wanted to be sure.

Plus I installed new batteries in each of my smoke detectors on January 2, one on each floor. I do this every January.
I urge everyone to do the same. Don't wake up dead one morning!


  1. Such an important reminder that can't be repeated often enough, esp in these cold winter months. Thanks for sharing!

  2. It pays to be careful, Sham, so good for you! Thanks for the reminder/warning.

  3. Good advice!...except I had to giggle about "waking up" dead. ;-)

  4. You sure to the right thing to prevent both fire and gas leakage.

    Gas is normally no problem here in Norway, as most heating is from hydroelectricpower, wood and remote waterbased heating. Our winterhome is supplied by remote heating, also for hot water.
    The only gas installation we do have is in our Summerhome, for hot water.Propan, wich is very dangerous as it is heavier than air. Too many boat owners have had bad experience with that fact.
    To avoid danger from explosions, we have an air opening close to the floor.

    The CO2 danger is mostly, in Norway, related to huts and cabins. Why? Because people lit up theire fireplaces with wet wood and they go to bed and never woke up again due to bad airing in a cold and humid cabin.
    We know the problem, and have of course smokedetectors installed.
    They work, I'll tell you.I can't remeber how may times we have had to open doors and windows;))
    But, it feels safe when you know your detectors work. We check them the very first thing we do, when we move out in the early spring.

    It's also a fact that we have more fires per capita in Norway than anywere else. Why? 'cause people do not check their electricity installations regulary and check the level of the battery on their smoke and firedetectors.
    80 people died from fire in their home in 2008. It's the CO2 that killed the most of them. Not the flames.

    Your advice here is like taken out of the Firebrigades manual for home protection.

    Have a great 2009

  5. Wise advice, Shammie. You're so reliable that way. I have a CO2 detector and a couple of smoke detectors. I think I should probably buy a couple more though. My house is small, but far better to be safe than sorry, particularly in the wake of Travis' story.

  6. Goo advice....ours are still in the box. I will irritate Steve to get them up.

  7. Excellent advice! We have a Co2 monitor in the basement. I would never have thought about it, but hubby insisted one year we have one. Fine with me. Also, we have a campaign here in Quebec. Change the clocks, change the smoke-detector batteries.

  8. Terrific reminder but I don't know how to "wake up dead". (:0)

  9. What New Baby??

    Smart thinking about the CO2!

  10. Somehow I like the idea of wakening up dead, but not yet, please! :-)

    Good advice you are giving, which I have so far followed only partially. My old gas-heated flat has such a lousy isolation and the air goes in and out everywhere. I trust that reduces the risk? Anyhow, the "gas authorities" have been here and I seem to be OK.

  11. I have a CO2 detector in my house, and I regularly test my smoke detectors, although they should alert me when the battery is running down. Your idea of replacing the battery on a regular day every year is a good one.

  12. hum...i never considered a CO2 detector and we do heat with gas in the winter. Will take care of that this weekend. Thanks for the notification!

  13. This is really good advise! We have bought CO2 detectors for our children and I know they're installed, but where is the one we bought for ourselves? In the basement awaiting installment, I think. This is shaping up to be one of those Honeydo..moments:)

  14. We have one installed outside the bedrooms. Maybe I should get one for each floor.
    I like your tourtière photo. We (meaning I) make them every year. This even made a vegetarian one.

    Do you mean the footsteps on the tracks or the guy crouching in the snow taking photos.

  15. i wake up dead most of the time! then i go right back to sleep again.


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