Carbon Monoxide Detectors: What Features Should You Look For

Posted On: July 07, 2014

Setting out to buy carbon monoxide (CO) detectors for your home is a wise decision. Detectors placed wisely around your home will protect you from unexpected CO leaks that could be lethal. Don’t think that all detectors are built the same, though, some have different features that may be better for your home.

Basic Features of Carbon Monoxide Detectors

  • Sensor type. The concentration of CO in the air can be measured in different ways. While most function accurately under typical conditions, when it gets extremely hot or cold, humid or dry, they can become less accurate. Try to find a detector that uses an electrochemical sensor, it is the most stable sensor available.
  • Replacement alert. Detectors last a long time and can be easy to forget about. When they die it’s important to replace them as soon as possible. Look for a detector that has some way of telling you when a replacement is needed.
  • Certification. Unbiased third-party certification can help you rest easy. The most prestigious certification you should look for is a UL (Underwriters Laboratories) symbol.

Optional Advanced Features

  • Display screen. Carbon monoxide detectors can be bought with a display screen to make reading CO levels easy.
  • Verbal alarm. If the CO levels get too high, you may prefer a verbal alarm that tells you about the issue as opposed to a blaring beep.
  • Backup power. Some detectors get energy from batteries, others are plugged into your electrical system. You may want one that plugs in but also has a backup battery in case of emergency.
  • Highest accuracy. If you want to be as safe as can be, find the detector with the highest accuracy. It will be listed as long as the detector is certified.

Once you’ve done your research, go ahead and get those CO detectors for your Glen Carbon or Highland home. Installing them should be easy and the resultant peace of mind is well worth the effort. If you need assistance, contact Ernst Heating & Cooling.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hamel, Alton, Glen Carbon, Highland, Greenville, Bethalto, Edwardsville, Collinsville, Maryville, Staunton and Troy, Illinois 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.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Creations/Shutterstock”

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