Important Information About Carbon Monoxide Detectors For Non-Dormitory Residents
What is carbon monoxide?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless gas produced when fuels (such as wood, gasoline, heating oil, etc.) burn incompletely. Fireplaces, gas furnaces, gas stoves, charcoal grills and other devices that use combustion are potential sources of CO.
What is the effect of exposure to CO?
CO replaces oxygen in the bloodstream. Individuals suffering from CO poisoning effectively suffocate, since even though their breathing is unhindered, they cannot get enough oxygen into the bloodstream.Mild CO poisoning (e.g., exposure to a concentration higher than 400 parts per million for 2-3 hours) feels like the flu, with symptoms including fatigue, nausea, vomiting and headaches. Higher exposure can result in disorientation, severe headaches, difficulty breathing and ultimately death.
How do CO detectors work?
The CO detector installed in your living area measures how much CO has accumulated and displays a digital readout of the concentration in parts per million (ppm). It takes measurements every 2.5 minutes and sounds an alarm before the concentration of CO becomes high enough for adults to begin to experience symptoms.The alarm sounds when CO levels reach 100 ppm over 90 minutes, 200 ppm over 35 minutes or 400 ppm over 15 minutes.
What do I do if the alarm sounds?
From another area, call Public Safety at 911 and report the problem.
Do not re-enter the room until instructed to do so by Public Safety, Alarm Shop personnel or Environmental Health and Safety.
Public Safety will contact either the Alarm Shop or Environmental Health and Safety to measure CO levels and determine the necessary course of action.This monitor is designed to minimize the possibility of false alarms, so treat all alarms as a real problem.
What do I do if the monitor is chirping?
This unit is equipped with a 9-volt backup battery. When the battery needs to be replaced, the monitor will chirp intermittently.Housing personnel replace the battery annually. If the battery needs to be replaced before then, contact your Building Superintendent.
What happens if we lose power?
The unit is equipped with a backup battery that will provide power to the monitor for about 6 hours. If the monitor completely loses power, it will go through a self-test mode once power is restored. During the self-test mode, the unit will alarm briefly.
Can I put furniture in front of the monitor?
The monitor will not function properly if it is covered up.Ensure that there is at least 6 to 8 inches of clearance around the monitor to allow air to flow through it.Do not place large pieces of furniture or bedding in front of it.
How could the monitor be damaged?
The CO monitor is sensitive to extreme temperature, high humidity, and liquids.It should not be placed in very hot or very cold areas. Water and cleaning solvents spilled or sprayed onto the monitor can cause damage.
May I move the monitor to another outlet?
The monitor can be moved to another part of the room as long as it is not within seven feet of any fuel-burning appliance.It is possible that the monitor might conduct a self-test once the unit is plugged back in. The alarm will briefly sound during the test.
Am I responsible for a damaged or lost monitor?
The Property Supervisor or Area Coordinator will include the CO monitors in their routine inspection. If the monitor is missing or damaged by the resident, the resident will be responsible for the replacement cost of the monitor. If the monitor is left unplugged, the resident may be fined.
If the monitor is found missing or disconnected during the course of an inspection conducted by a governmental agency, the fine incurred by the University will be passed on to the lessee(s)
For more information
If you have any other questions about the CO monitor, contact the Manager of Apartments/Houses, Chris Warkala at 8-7638 or email@example.com. For inquiries about the health effects of carbon monoxide, contact Environmental Health and Safety at 8-5294.