If you are considering getting carbon monoxide detectors for your home, you may have already discovered that there are different choices available. Fortunately, carbon monoxide detectors don’t have to be confusing to purchase. Just read this guide to identify the right kind of detector for your house.
The purpose of a carbon monoxide detector is to identify when too much of the colorless, odorless gas has built up in your home. Buildup can occur due to leaks in any device that burns fuel, such as furnaces, water heaters or even cars. Most experts recommend having a carbon monoxide detector on each floor, as well as one in any area that contains fuel-burning machinery. They should be placed at least five feet from kitchen and bathroom areas or gas-burning devices.
There are two basic types of carbon monoxide detectors:
- Battery-powered detectors usually have passive sensors that react to carbon monoxide after they have been exposed to the gas for some time. The biggest benefit is that they are very easy to install and can be placed anywhere the homeowner desires. They do need batteries and sensors replaced roughly every two years, and the unit generally lasts between five and 10 years.
- Electric-powered detectors usually have a sensor that periodically refreshes itself and resamples the air. These detectors generally display more information than battery-powered units and don’t need to have the sensor replaced during the normal life of the detector, which is about five to 10 years. The major drawback is the need for a nearby electrical outlet. Alternatively, the detector can be hard-wired into the home’s electrical system.
Which type of detector you choose depends mainly on where you need to install it. If you have an electrical outlet available, the electric powered detector may suit your needs perfectly. If not, a battery-powered detector will provide the same protection and more options for installation.
For questions about carbon monoxide detectors or any other HVAC-related issues, contact us at Smoky Mountain Heating & Air.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about carbon monoxide detectors and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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