UGI Urges Vigilance for Signs of Carbon Monoxide
12 Jan 2022
UGI has responded to multiple reports of carbon monoxide (CO) incidents recently as temperatures cool across Pennsylvania and residents turn up thermostats.
UGI urges customers to take several simple steps to ensure proper operation of heating equipment and appliances to prevent a build-up of CO inside homes.
CO is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas that is a by-product of the incomplete combustion of fuels such as wood, charcoal, gasoline, kerosene, oil, natural gas, and propane. CO can be caused by malfunctioning heating systems or appliances as well as damaged or blocked vents and chimneys.
Signs there may be a build-up of CO in your home include:
- Significant condensation on walls and windows;
- House pets becoming sluggish;
- Residents in the home suffering flu-like symptoms or feeling unusually tired;
- Chronic odors from a malfunctioning appliance. While CO is odorless, the malfunctioning appliance can emit a sooty or smoky smell.
CO poisoning is serious and can be fatal. Individuals who think they might be experiencing symptoms of CO poisoning should immediately seek fresh air and prompt medical attention.
Here are some simple steps to help ensure your safety:
- Make sure working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are appropriately located within living spaces and the batteries powering them are fresh. CO detectors/alarms should be located on each floor of a home, including one in each bedroom or sleeping area.
- Have a qualified professional check your furnace, water heater, and other internal combustion appliances. An annual check and service of your heating system and appliances will help ensure the safe operation of your equipment.
- Check the connections to your chimney or flue for damage or corrosion. A damaged or blocked chimney could allow exhaust gas, including CO, to enter your home. Contact a heating professional to have your chimney and flue checked.
- Check that both internal and external combustion air vents are unobstructed. External vents can become blocked by leaves and other debris.
- Change or clean furnace filters regularly. Clogged filters can reduce the efficiency of your heating equipment and impede normal operations.
For more information, visit www.ugi.com/gassafety.