Cold weather brings carbon monoxide warning

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)–The first bitter cold temperatures are the first real test for your boiler. Even if you have had it serviced, cracks can form in the flu or exhaust vents, pumping carbon monoxide into your house.

A carbon monoxide detector is different than the smoke and fire alarms you typically see in homes. And while many building codes require a carbon monoxide alarms next to the boiler, Battalion Chief John Griffin says it’s important to have one where you sleep.

“You want one right by your main heat source like your boiler, but you also want one that is going to wake you up,” Griffin said. “If you were on the second floor in the boiler is in the basement, if that detector goes off, it may not wake you up.”

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Dr. Stephen Wolf is the chief of the emergency department at St Francis Hospital. He says the symptoms of car monoxide are like the flu, headache nausea dizziness. And one big tip off that you may be suffering car monoxide poisoning and not the flu, he says is if everyone in your family or in your house become sick all at once.

“Usually the flu, one family member or two and then go to the next person, if everybody has it, you have to start to wonder if something else going on,” Wolf said.

If you haven’t had your boiler serviced, the fire department says now is the time the sooner the better. But always keep in mind mechanical equipment breaks down, you should have the alarm.

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