Where Are Carbon Monoxide Detectors Required?

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is one of the most overlooked health risks in the country. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), over 400 Americans die due to unintentional CO poisoning each year, and over 4,000 are hospitalized.


How Does Carbon Monoxide Harm Your Body?

This poisonous gas essentially suffocates the body. Red blood cells normally absorb and deliver oxygen throughout the body. When CO is present, these cells absorb the CO much faster than they absorb oxygen, and the body does not receive the oxygen that it needs. The initial symptoms of CO poisoning are often headache, dizziness and nausea.

Protecting Your Property Against CO Contamination

Carbon monoxide is produced by the combustion of fossil fuels. Fireplaces, gas and wood burning stoves, and other appliances that require combustion produce CO. Therefore, it is essential that homes that contain these items have carefully designed ventilation in order to keep the inhabitants safe.

In many states, including Florida, there are certain circumstances when property owners are legally required to have carbon monoxide detectors installed. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Jacksonville appraisers will look to ensure that carbon monoxide detectors have been installed to buildings that include a:

• Fossil-fuel-burning heater or appliance
• Fireplace
• Attached garage
• Boiler regulated under chapter 554

If a building does have any of these appliances, it is not enough to simply have a CO detector installed in the room where the appliance is located. The carbon monoxide could vent undetected to other areas of the building.

A Jacksonville appraiser, when determining if a building meets Florida’s legal requirements, would look to ensure that an operational carbon monoxide alarm located within ten feet of each sleeping area of the building. This does not mean that a separate detector needs to be installed for each bedroom, but that each bedroom must be within ten feet of an alarm.

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is one of the most overlooked health risks in the country. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), over 400 Americans die due to unintentional CO poisoning each year, and over 4,000 are hospitalized.

How Does Carbon Monoxide Harm Your Body?

This poisonous gas essentially suffocates the body. Red blood cells normally absorb and deliver oxygen throughout the body. When CO is present, these cells absorb the CO much faster than they absorb oxygen, and the body does not receive the oxygen that it needs. The initial symptoms of CO poisoning are often headache, dizziness and nausea.

 

Protecting Your Property Against CO Contamination

Carbon monoxide is produced by the combustion of fossil fuels. Fireplaces, gas and wood burning stoves, and other appliances that require combustion produce CO. Therefore, it is essential that homes that contain these items have carefully designed ventilation in order to keep the inhabitants safe.

In many states, including Florida, there are certain circumstances when property owners are legally required to have carbon monoxide detectors installed. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Jacksonville appraisers will look to ensure that carbon monoxide detectors have been installed to buildings that include a:

  • Fossil-fuel-burning heater or appliance
  • Fireplace
  • Attached garage
  • Boiler regulated under chapter 554

If a building does have any of these appliances, it is not enough to simply have a CO detector installed in the room where the appliance is located. The carbon monoxide could vent undetected to other areas of the building.

A Jacksonville appraiser, when determining if a building meets Florida’s legal requirements, would look to ensure that an operational carbon monoxide alarm located within ten feet of each sleeping area of the building. This does not mean that a separate detector needs to be installed for each bedroom, but that each bedroom must be within ten feet of an alarm.

Keeping Your CO Detector Operational

It can be easy to install the necessary carbon monoxide detectors and then forget that they are there. The Florida state laws regarding CO alarms state that these detectors must be operational, so it is important to ensure, for your safety and for legal reasons that the detectors are in working order.

The manufacturer’s instructions for the detectors will let you know how often the detector will need to be replaced, which is often within five to seven years. If you are not sure whether it is time to replace, you can test the alarm. Most of these detectors have a test button that you can use to determine if the alarm still works.

One of the best ways to determine if the alarm is working is to really put it to the test. Put something close to the alarm that emits carbon monoxide, such as a lit cigarette or a stick of incense, but be careful. You can have your Jacksonville real estate appraiser help you with this process.

It can be easy to install the necessary carbon monoxide detectors and then forget that they are there. The Florida state laws regarding CO alarms state that these detectors must be operational, so it is important to ensure, for your safety and for legal reasons that the detectors are in working order.

The manufacturer’s instructions for the detectors will let you know how often the detector will need to be replaced, which is often within five to seven years. If you are not sure whether it is time to replace, you can test the alarm. Most of these detectors have a test button that you can use to determine if the alarm still works.

One of the best ways to determine if the alarm is working is to really put it to the test. Put something close to the alarm that emits carbon monoxide, such as a lit cigarette or a stick of incense, but be careful. You can have your Jacksonville real estate appraiser help you with this process.