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Know the Signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


Carbon monoxide (CO) is a byproduct of incomplete combustion, which can occur in homes or businesses using fuel-burning appliances, such as a furnace. Typically, CO is vented out of the building or dwelling, posing no risk to you. Certain system malfunctions can cause carbon monoxide to back up into the structure, and exposure could be deadly.


Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon monoxide exposure prevents the body’s ability to transport oxygen effectively. Minimal exposure can produce symptoms, while prolonged exposure can be deadly.

  • Mild exposure to carbon monoxide indoors can lead people to experience nausea, headaches, and fatigue.
  • Moderate exposure to carbon monoxide may create pounding headaches, sleepiness, confusion, disorientation, and rapid heartbeat.
  • Heavy exposure to carbon monoxide can cause loss of consciousness, cardiorespiratory failure, convulsions, brain damage, coma, and death.

Carbon monoxide exposure is problematic to detect, as it is colorless and odorless. The symptoms associated with overexposure are often difficult to link to the presence of CO, as they greatly resemble cold symptoms.

Visible Carbon Monoxide Warning Signs

Aside from health effects, there may be other signs present in your home or building which could indicate a carbon monoxide issue.

  • Carbon/soot streaks surrounding the service door of a fuel-burning appliance
  • No draft coming from your chimney
  • Flue pipes or appliance jackets show excessive rust
  • Moisture is leaking from flue pipes, vents, or the chimney base
  • Rust is present on exterior vent pipes

Install Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Because carbon monoxide is virtually undetectable by humans, it is critical that your Cincinnati home or business be equipped with carbon monoxide detectors. This equipment senses levels of CO in the air, alerting you so you may safely exit the structure before you are harmed by CO exposure.

A NATE-certified Nelson Comfort technician will provide quality installation of CO detectors, ensuring you have the number of detectors necessary and that they are positioned appropriately.

If your carbon monoxide detector’s alarm was caused by an HVAC system malfunction, Nelson Comfort is available to assist you. We will perform a home and system inspection to find the source of the leak, provide thorough repairs, and test the system for safe operation for your protection. Contact us today to schedule service.

About The Author


Dan Detmer

Dan Detmer is the owner of Nelson Comfort. Dan was born into the heating and cooling industry, coming from a family of well respected HVAC contractors in Dayton, Ohio. After working in the family business, Dan decided to work for a local HVAC wholesale business helping local contractors grow their business. When he felt his heart moving him back into the residential and light commercial business, Dan joined the Mortimer Heating & Cooling team in Cincinnati, where he had called home and become part of the community for several years. After a short period of time Dan purchased the company and created what is today, Nelson Comfort. Today he operates a company based on integrity, honesty, and stellar customer service. If you have any questions feel free to tweet (at sign) NelsonComfort and we will get right back with you!

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