By law you must have a carbon monoxide alarm when you install a wood-burning, multifuel, pellet or gas stove or fire. It also makes perfect sense to protect yourself and your family because it can be a killer – this is not a safety measure you can afford to ignore.
Every product we sell is tested to the highest standard, however outside factors, freak events and accidents happen so due diligence is always required.
We send out carbon monoxide (CO) alarms with every appliance for free, meaning you have no excuse. The question remains: where should you put it?
Location, location, location…
Your CO alarm needs to be within three metres of the appliance, and we recommend putting it at head height. This is because it will be testing the air you are breathing. CO is only slightly lighter than air, meaning it won’t sit in a particular place in your room, such as on the floor or by the ceiling.
CO is a by-product of combustion and is vented away by the flue, meaning it never enters your room. Sometimes, through poor installation by unqualified or disreputable installers, a product can suffer from a poor draught and a lazy flame. If the gases are not being drawn out of the chimney, then there is a risk they will begin to enter the room. To ensure you have the highest quality installation, only use a HETAS registered installer.
Carbon monoxide risk indicators
One early indicator that the chimney isn’t functioning at its best is an overly smoky stove, with smoke lingering in the firebox. Upon opening the door to refuel, smoke will often enter the room. It is important to address this issue quickly. Another measure that may help would be to have your chimney swept. Read the best ways to combat a smoky stove.
Poor weather can cause a back draft down the chimney can cause CO to enter your room. If this is the case, cease operation of the appliance and wait for the weather to improve and consider fitting a cowl.
When burning gas be sure to watch out for a lazy, orange flame and an increased amount of condensation on your windows.
CO poisoning often has symptoms mistaken for the flu, which can have fatal consequences. Read how protect yourself from carbon monoxide poisoning.