I have to say this is one of the less common safety measures people think about in their homes or the workplace. Carbon Monoxide is actually very dangerous because you can’t see it, smell it or taste it in the air. This means if you do happen to have a leak somewhere, the chances are you won’t know until it’s too late!
Carbon Monoxide can leak from a variety of places, however if you have taken various energy saving measures around the home such as sealing cracks, you are more vulnerable than someone who hasn’t. This is because back-drafting can occur when you use fuel burning devices, making it far easier for this gas to invade the air around you.
So now you know how dangerous it can be let’s take a look at some of the sensors I think are worth a mention on my website.
Kidde KN-COPP-B-LPM Battery-Operated Alarm
One of the most useful features about this Carbon Monoxide alarm is it’s battery operated and free-standing. Battery power is a much better idea if you live in an area where power outages can be a problem and it’s easily small enough to sit on a night stand or it can be wall mounted.
Now for the technical part. This sensor will consistently monitor the levels of CO in your home, and the alarm will sound if levels get too high to be safe anymore. Basically, you can expect this to happen if you have 70ppm (parts per million) of CO in a room for 1 to 4 hours, 150ppm for 10 to 50 minutes or 400ppm for 4 to 15 minutes. If this happens an alarm at 85 decibels will go off.
It has a really handy LED display which is updated every 15 seconds. Plus, you won’t have to worry if the unit is actually working because you get a green LED light that flashes when power is present. If this isn’t there, you should check the batteries. All in all, this a very inexpensive way of making sure the levels of Carbon Monoxide in your home do not reach dangerous levels and it comes with a 5 year limited warranty.
First Alert CO615 Plug-In Alarm
The word “plug-in” may put you off slightly when you take a look at the description for this Carbon Monoxide sensor, however the manufacturer is well aware that you need constant power even if you suffer a power outage. For that reason, you get a battery backup (which takes 2 x AA batteries) and the unit will automatically switch if the mains are not working.
As with many CO detectors, this one has a handy backlit LED display so it’s easy to read in low light and it gives you readings in parts per million. But, the one difference with this model is it uses something called “electrochemical” technology which is among the most accurate on the market. Aside from giving accurate readings, should CO reach dangerous levels your detector will sound an alarm at 85 decibels.
You also get a low battery warning as well as an end of life indicator so there is little that can go wrong in terms of making sure you and your family are well protected at all times. Plus, they have included a button that will both silence the alarm should it go off, and test it to make sure it’s working. Oh, and if you would like one of these in several rooms you can buy them in packs of one to as many as four.
Floureon Battery Powered Carbon Monoxide Alarm
This is one of the less expensive carbon monoxide alarms I’ve decided to include but that doesn’t mean it’s any less effective. It runs off 3 AA 1.5v batteries and can be mounted to the wall so you have a permanent way of telling if CO has risen to dangerous levels in your home.
If the alarm does go off, the sound is set at 85 decibels so there is no missing it, and it will also flash red from the LED light.
There are a couple of things you should know about the LED lights (which I found a little confusing to start with).
If green and red are on, this indicates normal activity. When you power the detector up it will make a “chirp” sound and the red LED will flash once. The green LED light should flash every 30 seconds so you know the unit is working correctly, and will also flash before it takes a reading and if any button is pressed.
CO levels are displayed on the LED screen and can easily be seen due to the backlight, and everything is measured in PPM. A combined test/reset button is also included so you know the sensor is working properly, plus it will also remember the highest CO level recorded before the last reset.
Kidde Combination Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Alarm
In my humble opinion, I have saved the best until last on this page of my website. Considering this carbon monoxide detector combines both CO and smoke, you’ll be surprised at how inexpensive it is.
First of all, this particular model is really easy to install. Simply choose where you would like to place it, put the batteries in and screw it on. The range this sensor has is also something the manufacturer has thought about because it’s possible to install one of these where you once needed two.
One of the best features for me is the voice activated alarm. If it detects smoke, the LED will flash, you’ll receive three alarm beeps and then a voice will call out “fire, fire”. When it senses dangerous levels of CO the same thing happens except the voice alarm will shout “Warning – Carbon Monoxide”. What you should know is both these warnings will continue until the threat has been eliminated.
What I also like is, if you have this detector installed in, say, your kitchen you can make use of the trademark “hush” feature. This means you can silence the alarm if you know smoke is likely to be produced when you’re cooking.
Other features include a low battery indicator, a test/reset button so you know it’s always working and it’s also UL approved.
You can also buy the same model to be hard wired into your building. What’s great about this one is it will interconnect all of the detectors you have and makes use of your electrical supply. Should a power outage occur, all sensors will immediately switch to their battery back-up. Another plus to opting for this model is when an alarm sounds it will automatically send the signal to all other sensors, so it doesn’t matter where you have smoke or high CO, you’ll know about it!
If you would like to find out more about the hard wired version: take a look here.