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This US CPSC document describes a brief heating system safety warning for homeowners.
The CPSC reminds owners to be sure that their heating service contractor also checks the chimney, flue, and flue vent connector as
part of annual service (or when a problem is suspected). Unsafe chimneys and flues present a carbon monoxide hazard risk which can be fatal, as well as fire risks in buildings.
We [website authors] advise that special care be
taken to inspect older buildings with large masonry flues into which gas-fired appliances have been vented, dead-end chimneys which are easily blocked by falling debris, chimneys with no caps (easily invaded by
birds or animals), single-wythe brick flues (a fire and gas leak hazard), and chimneys which have been damaged by leaks or movement. The US CPSC document follows.
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Home Heating System Should Be Checked for CO Carbon Monoxide Hazards
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 3, 1988
Release # 88-92
Home Heating System Should Be Checked Now [for proper venting and for CO Carbon Monoxide Hazards - DJF]
WASHINGTON - Government safety experts are urging consumers to have central heating systems inspected this fall even
though the heat may have already been turned on.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends that central heating equipment be inspected annually by a
qualified heating contractor. The furnace or boiler as well as electrical and mechanical components, valves, thermostat
controls and automatic safety switches should be tested for proper operation to protect against possible overheating or
fuel leaks which may result in fire or explosion.
Although heating contractors do not routinely inspect venting systems as part of the checkup, consumers should ask the
contractor to examine the flue and chimney for possible problems. Blockages may be caused by mortar and other material
loosened from chimney walls, bird nests or debris.
Chimneys and flues should be clear at all times so exhaust gases,
including carbon monoxide (CO), are properly vented outside the home. Flues and flue connectors should be checked for
tight, secure fitting, and for signs of rust or corrosion, which could allow exhaust gases to enter the house.
CPSC cautioned homeowners to beware of carbon monoxide fumes (CO) in the home. CO is colorless, odorless, and is
sometimes called "the silent killer." People exposed to harmful levels of CO often show symptoms similar to flu-type
illnesses, including dizziness, fatigue, headaches, irregular breathing and nausea. In the most recent year for which
statistics are available, CPSC estimates that almost 60 deaths could be attributed to carbon monoxide gas emitted from
central heating equipment.
The federal agency also stressed the importance of chimney inspections where oil or solid fuel heating systems have
recently been converted to gas. After the conversion, accumulated soot and debris on the chimney may loosen and fall.
If enough debris collects inside the chimney, it could block the chimney and cause a buildup of dangerous levels of
carbon monoxide in the home. If the fall checkup of the heating system shows an accumulation of soot in the chimney, a
chimney sweep should be called to clean the chimney and flue; annual chimney inspections should be made until no more
soot is found.
CPSC said homeowners planing on converting to gas heat should have the chimney inspected when the conversion is made,
then annually thereafter.
Dangerous Product Reports to the US CPSC: To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, call CPSC's hotline at (800) 638-2772 or CPSC's teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270, or visit CPSC's web site at SaferProducts.gov.
Continue reading at CO DETECTION OPTIONS or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.
Eric Galow, Galow Homes, Lagrangeville, NY. Mr. Galow can be reached by email: email@example.com or by telephone: 914-474-6613. Mr. Galow specializes in residential construction including both new homes and repairs, renovations, and additions.
Roger Hankey is principal of Hankey and Brown home inspectors, Eden Prairie, MN. Mr. Hankey is a past chairman of the ASHI Standards Committee. Mr. Hankey has served in other ASHI professional and leadership roles. Contact Roger Hankey at: 952 829-0044 - firstname.lastname@example.org. Mr. Hankey is a frequent contributor to InspectAPedia.com.
Arlene Puentes, an ASHI member and a licensed home inspector in Kingston, NY, and has served on ASHI national committees as well as HVASHI Chapter President. Ms. Puentes can be contacted at email@example.com
Wikipedia provided background information about some topics discussed at this website provided this citation is also found in the same article along with a " retrieved on" date. NOTE: because Wikipedia entries are fluid and can be amended in real time, we cite the retrieval date of Wikipedia citations and we do not assert that the information found there is necessarily authoritative.
Books & Articles on Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, & Repair
Jennifer Moore, Sales Administrator, Nextteq, LLC, Tampa FL, www.nextteq.com 813-249-5888. Nextteq is the master Distributor for Gastec in the United States. According to the company's website, Gastec Gas Sampling Pumps are the industry’s first and only pumps to provide on-the-spot measurement of ambient temperature. [Private email, JM to DF 5/23/08]
"Choosing and Using a Carbon Monoxide CO Monitor," Dan Friedman, The ASHI Technical Journal, Vol. 2 No. 1, July1991
"Table Z-1 Limits for Air Contaminants, 1910.1000 Table Z-1" OSHA standard for air contaminant limits (http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9992) - includes for CO2, Carbon dioxide.........| CAS No. 124-38-9 | 5000 ppm | 9000 mg/m3 limits for carbon dioxide as an air contaminant.
Sampling for gases in air such as VOC's, MVOC's, toxic chemicals, and combustion products.
Unfortunately no single test or tool can detect all possible building contaminants. We use methods and equipment which can test for common contaminants. If the identity of a specific contaminant is known in advance we can also test for a very large number of specific contaminant gases in buildings.
We use gas sampling equipment provided by the two most reliable companies in the world, Draeger-Safety's detector-tubes and Drager accuro� bellows pump, the Gastec� cylinder pump and detector-tube system produced by Gastec or Sensidyne, and we also use Sensidyne's Gilian air pump. For broad screening for combustibles and a number of other
toxic gases and for leak tracing we also use Amprobe's Tif8850. All of these instruments, their applications, and sensitivities (minimum detectable limits) for specific
gases are described in our Gas Sampling Plan online document.
Air Pollution Toxicology: APTI Course SI:300, Introduction to Air Pollution Toxicology, US EPA Air Pollution Training Institute, Environmental Research Center, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711, Sept. 1993, web search 08/28/2010, original source: http://yosemite.epa.gov/
GTSP, 2006: Carbon Dioxide Capture and Geologic Storage: A Core Element of a A Global
Energy Technology Strategy to Address Climate Change (PDF, 37 pp., 6.05 MB, About PDF).
April 2006, JJ Dooley et al. Global Energy Technology Strategy Program (GSTP)
IPCC, 2005: Special Report on Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage, Special Report of the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Metz, Bert, Davidson, Ogunlade,
de Coninck, Heleen, Loos, Manuela, and Meyer, Leo (Eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, The
Edinburgh Building Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 2RU England
Nitrogen Oxides: Air Quality Criteria for Oxides of Nitrogen, Vol III of III, US EPA, EPA600/8-91/049cF, August 1993, web search 08/28/2010, original source: http://nepis.epa.gov [Large PDF 25MB] Key chapters in this document evaluate the latest scientific data on (a) health effects of NOx measured ill laboratory animals and exposed human populatIOns and (b) effects of NOx on agricultural crops, forests, and ecosystems, as well as (c) NOx effects on visibility and nonbiological materials. Other chapters describe the nature, sources, distribution, measurement, and concentratiOns of NOx m the environment These chapters were prepared and peer revived by experts from various state and Federal government offices, academia, and private industry for use by EPA to support decision makIng regarding potentIal risks to public health and the enVIronment Although the document IS not intended to be an exhaustIve literature reVIew, It IS intended to cover all the pertinent literature through early 1993
Ozone Warnings - Use of Ozone as a "mold" remedy is ineffective and may be dangerous.
Dräger MSDS for Dräger CH25301 Air Current Tubes, Page 1 of 2. Dräger MSDS for Dräger CH25301 Air Current Tubes, Page 2 of 2. Watch out: the Dräger air current tube or "smoke tube" # CH16631 produces a sulfuric acid gas sulfuric acid H2SO4 /SO3 that is dangerous to life and is highly corrosive. Take a look at our copy of the Dräger MSDS for their CH25301 Air Current Tubes. We stored this MSDS in the box with the rubber bulb and tube cutter provided by Dräger. These air current monitoring tubes are provided with rubber caps so that the tube can be "stopped" or shut down when not in use. But the sulfuric acid was so corrosive that it not only caused the rubbger caps to disintegrate, it actually "burned" or oxidized our copy of the MSDS paper form!
Carson, Dunlop & Associates Ltd., 120 Carlton Street Suite 407, Toronto ON M5A 4K2. Tel: (416) 964-9415 1-800-268-7070 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The firm provides professional home inspection services & home inspection education & publications. Alan Carson is a past president of ASHI, the American Society of Home Inspectors. Thanks to Alan Carson and Bob Dunlop, for permission for InspectAPedia to use text excerpts from The Home Reference Book & illustrations from The Illustrated Home. Carson Dunlop Associates' provides extensive home inspection education and report writing material.
The Illustrated Home illustrates construction details and building components, a reference for owners & inspectors. Special Offer: For a 5% discount on any number of copies of the Illustrated Home purchased as a single order Enter INSPECTAILL in the order payment page "Promo/Redemption" space.
TECHNICAL REFERENCE GUIDE to manufacturer's model and serial number information for heating and cooling equipment, useful for determining the age of heating boilers, furnaces, water heaters is provided by Carson Dunlop, Associates, Toronto - Carson Dunlop Weldon & Associates Special Offer: Carson Dunlop Associates offers InspectAPedia readers in the U.S.A. a 5% discount on any number of copies of the Technical Reference Guide purchased as a single order. Just enter INSPECTATRG in the order payment page "Promo/Redemption" space.
The Home Reference Book - the Encyclopedia of Homes, Carson Dunlop & Associates, Toronto, Ontario, 25th Ed., 2012, is a bound volume of more than 450 illustrated pages that assist home inspectors and home owners in the inspection and detection of problems on buildings. The text is intended as a reference guide to help building owners operate and maintain their home effectively. Field inspection worksheets are included at the back of the volume.
Special Offer: For a 10% discount on any number of copies of the Home Reference Book purchased as a single order. Enter INSPECTAHRB in the order payment page "Promo/Redemption" space. InspectAPedia.com editor Daniel Friedman is a contributing author.
Special Offer: Carson Dunlop Associates offers InspectAPedia readers in the U.S.A. a 5% discount on these courses: Enter INSPECTAHITP in the order payment page "Promo/Redemption" space. InspectAPedia.com editor Daniel Friedman is a contributing author.
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