Carbon Monoxide

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Forum topic by David Craig posted 01-26-2013 12:54 PM 1128 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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David Craig

2137 posts in 3072 days

01-26-2013 12:54 PM

Topic tags/keywords: co carbon monoxide detector heating shop safety monitor

During this latest cold spell, I came home to a house that was just over 50 degrees. I had a clogged condenser pipe that triggered an automatic shutoff. I was able to take care of it myself and heard the general warnings about carbon monoxide and home repair on heating devices. I became very conscious of the fact that my basement workshop has gas appliances heating the water and the air and I had no detectors for monitoring for CO. I picked up two monitors, one for my shop, and one for my living space. If I am working or sleeping, I will know if there is a leak.

With all the cold weather and discussions generated about the various ways one heats the shop and the fact that what we do has the potential for clogging the airflow, I thought it might be a good idea to remind everyone to get one of these contraptions. No odor, no visible traces, by the time you know something is wrong, you are already in serious trouble.


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

10 replies so far

View helluvawreck's profile


30765 posts in 2829 days

#1 posted 01-26-2013 01:56 PM

That’s a good word of advice, David. Sometimes we all can be negligent about these things. Thanks.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View whitebeast88's profile


4128 posts in 2153 days

#2 posted 01-26-2013 02:17 PM

thanks david thats something you really don’t think about,but should.

-- Marty.Athens,AL

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4170 posts in 3127 days

#3 posted 01-26-2013 04:06 PM

I have one in the shop, since there are cars, and two furnaces there, and we also have them in a couple other places in the house. Definitely an imortant reminder.

Got my fish moved to there new aquarium. It presents opportunities for an arts and crafts veneer of wood for the stand and the top. And I have start the glueups on my cutoffs cart…....finally.

-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2073 days

#4 posted 01-26-2013 04:19 PM

Thanks for the reminder. I have a CO detector in the shop, but I think I will replace the battery.

Some detectors are more sensitive than others.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View Gerald Thompson's profile

Gerald Thompson

914 posts in 2197 days

#5 posted 01-26-2013 08:33 PM

One of the symptoms of CO poisoning is pink cheeks. CO has a geater affinity for hemoglobin than O2. It stays in the red blood cells and will not be used and it is stuck there. This keeps red cells red hence one ends up with more cells being red and it shows up often times in the cheeks.
If one sees this it is best to get out of the area anc call 911. This is not being overly alarmist. Ones blood O2 level should be 90% or above. One woild have no way of measuring this. Supplemental O2 may be needed. Remember the CO will stay latched on to the red blood cell. It take a little while for the body to get more RBCs into the body.
CO sensors are the first line of defense not a mirror.

-- Jerry

View Knothead62's profile


2584 posts in 2924 days

#6 posted 01-26-2013 08:45 PM

“pink cheeks”
My wife calls them hot flashes. We have smoke detectors in key places in the house and a CO alarm in the den where we have a gas heater (need to open a window when it’s on). Very important! We had a fire in the county a while back and smoke detectors were disabled!
Rule of thumb- change the batteries when the time changes.

View Roger's profile


20923 posts in 2767 days

#7 posted 01-28-2013 03:19 PM

Thnx for the heads-up David

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View REO's profile


928 posts in 2037 days

#8 posted 01-28-2013 04:28 PM

CO is a by product of incomplete combustion. the reason CO is poisonous is because the oxygen in the molecule is attracted to the hemoglobin and neither one wants to give it up. Hemoglobin is no dummy though when it comes into contact with O2 it lets the CO molecule walk. Most of the symptoms are readily recognizable symptoms including mild headache, dizziness, and nausea. Pink cheeks depends on the individual does not happen in all cases and is caused by an increase in the heart rate, a reaction to the body’s need for more oxygen. As the condition worsens finger nails will lose their pink look and be replaced by a bluish cast. properly maintained CO detectors will detect levels of CO far below harmful concentrations. They are a great investment!

View CL810's profile


3772 posts in 2951 days

#9 posted 01-28-2013 04:36 PM

Extreme care should be exercised when exhausting a dust collector to the outside from a workshop that contains a fuel burning unit. The negative air pressure will pull the exhaust fumes into the workplace.

-- "The only limits to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today." - FDR

View mnguy's profile


193 posts in 3361 days

#10 posted 01-28-2013 04:43 PM

Anoter safety step I have in my shop is a heat detector, not a smoke detector. It gives me some detection and warning of fires, but isn’t nuisance tripped by the inevitable, occassional ‘smoke’ from some burn on wood from a blade or a bit. I have the detector wired into the smoke detectors in the house; hardwire with battery back up. My shop is in the basement.

Great tip on the CO detector!

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