|What Is CO?||Water Heaters||CO Alarms||Safety Precautions||Important Phone Nos.|
What Is Carbon Monoxide?
Carbon Monoxide (also known as CO) is a poisonous gas which can be given off by any appliance which burns a fossil fuel such as gas, coal or oil. CO can enter your home or a room in your home if:
Carbon Monoxide is colourless, odourless and has no taste. It is a killer.
Gas Appliances Need Air Too
Gas appliances need air to burn safely. With enough air, burning natural gas produces Carbon Dioxide and water in safe amounts. These products are normally taken away by a chimney or flue. However, Carbon Monoxide can be produced if there is too little air, or if the chimney or flue is blocked or obstructed. Look out for the danger signs.
The Danger Signs
A number of things may indicate that your appliance is unsafe:
If you are at all worried about a gas appliance, seek help. Don't delay and put yourself or others in danger.
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide poisoning can be similar to those caused by other illnesses such as a cold or flu. But if anyone in your house has any of the following symptoms when using a gas appliance, turn it off and go to your doctor:
Stop using the appliance immediately and do not use it again until it has been checked by a Registered Gas Technician or a qualified Service Engineer.
In case of a Natural Gas Emergency call Bord Gáis Networks 24 hour emergency number 1850 20 50 50.
Older water heaters, made before modern safety devices were introduced in 1996, may be unsafe to use due to the risk of Carbon Monoxide production. If you have an older type, over-sink or over-bath gas water heater, it may be unsafe to use. Stop using it immediately and call Bord Gáis:
We can then arrange for a Bord Gáis Safety Advisor to visit you without charge. This expert advisor will assess your water heater installation and inform you of the safety action required.
Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Carbon Monoxide alarms are available from all good hardware stores. They are usually installed adjacent to sleeping areas or in rooms containing a gas appliance. More than one may be required to offer full protection. This type of alarm is only useful for a certain length of time, advised by the manufacturer. Never hold on to a Carbon Monoxide alarm after its useful date has expired. A Carbon Monoxide alarm should not be used as a substitute for a smoke alarm.
While Carbon Monoxide alarms may provide an extra measure of warning, they should never be relied on as a substitute for regular inspection and maintenance of your Natural Gas appliances, venting and chimneys.
The following is a checklist of safety precautions you should take:
Important Phone Numbers