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Placement of a carbon monoxide detector

This guide is intended to provide general guidance only. It is not intended to give you advice on your personal financial circumstances. You should seek independent professional advice if you’re unsure about anything mentioned in this guide or what choices to make.

Understanding the appropriate placement of a carbon monoxide detector is extremely important. Carbon monoxide is a highly poisonous gas and is produced by the incomplete burning of fuels including gas, oil, wood and coal. This can occur when appliances such as boilers, cookers and ovens are incorrectly fitted, not properly maintained or if their vents become blocked. It’s not just gas-burning products that pose a carbon monoxide risk. Any appliance that burns fuel can produce carbon monoxide, including heaters, oil-fired boilers and fires.

Unfortunately, carbon monoxide is colourless, tasteless and odourless, making it very difficult to spot a leak. That’s why it’s absolutely crucial that you have a working carbon monoxide detector in your home. According to the Gas Safe Register, though, there are some tell-tale signs you should keep an eye out for. These include:

Never rely on these warning signs, though. To protect yourself fully you need a carbon monoxide detector.

Do I need a carbon monoxide detector?

Yes! An estimated 30-50 people in the UK die each year as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning, while many more are injured or become seriously ill. A detector helps to protect your family against this risk.

Where can I buy a carbon monoxide detector?

You can buy carbon monoxide detectors from most DIY stores – go for an audible one so you’re alerted to a leak straight away. They’ll cost between £15 and £35. Make sure your detector bears the British Standard EN 50291 mark, and has a British or European Kitemark.

Is a carbon monoxide detector the same as a smoke detector?

NO! A carbon monoxide detector is not a replacement for a standard smoke alarm – you’ll need one of each.

Placement of a carbon monoxide detector

Learn the warning signs of carbon monoxide poisoning

Carbon monoxide symptoms are often similar to flu, food poisoning, infections and even simple tiredness. Be alert to these signs, and learn more about protecting yourself at the Be Alarmed website, which contains loads of information about avoiding the dangers of carbon monoxide.

What to do if you experience symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

How to be gas safe

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