Carbon Monoxide

Here’s the need-to-know on the deadly carbon monoxide What is carbon monoxide? Carbon monoxide or CO is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas. It is slightly denser than air and can be poisonous. It can easily mix with other gasses that you inhale and you will not be able to detect that you are inhaling carbon monoxide. How is it produced? CO is a result of the incomplete burning or carbon- based fuel such as natural gas, gasoline, kerosene, oil, propane, coal and wood. Some home and commercial appliances that are powered by internal combustion engines such as heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units, portable generators, cars, lawn mowers, and power washers. These machines and carbon- based fuels are safe to use. However, when the fuel does not burn properly, excess CO is produced and this can be poisonous. Gas appliances that are incorrectly installed and maintain can cause CO to leak in high levels. How does it harm you? Carbon monoxide is harmful when inhaled because it displaces oxygen in the blood and prevents oxygen from being supplied to the heart, brain and other vital organs. CO in large amounts can overcome a person in minutes with no warning. It can cause the person to lose consciousness and suffocate. How many people are affected by carbon monoxide poisoning? Every year, more than 200 people in the UK are taken to hospitals on suspected poisoning from CO. Of this number, there are about 40 deaths reported annually from CO poisoning. What are the symptoms? Initial symptoms when a moderate amount of CO enters one’s body include: Headache Fatigue Shortness of breath...

Concealed Boiler Flues

Concealed boiler flues pose a health hazard to your family Boiler flues are necessary components of a gas heating system. They are responsible for taking away fumes from the boiler. There are properties, mostly flats and apartments, that have concealed boiler flues which are difficult to inspect because they are placed behind walls and ceilings.  It has been shown that a number of incident where carbon monoxide from faulty boiler are seeping into rooms due to faulty concealed flues.   Concealed boiler flues should be examined by Gas Safe registered engineers Gas Safe registered engineers should be able to inspect the boiler flues whenever a safety check is done on your gas heating system. Flues that are in poor condition, coupled with a boiler situated in a room with poor ventilation, will definitely increase the potential danger that your family will face in relation to carbon monoxide poisoning. While carbon monoxide alarms can be installed to monitor the room, it is an an alternative to a Gas Safe registered engineer being able to visually inspect the boiler flues. Only them can ensure and certify that your gas boiler system is fit and safe for your family. What to do if you have concealed boiler flues If your property have concealed boiler flues, then inspection hatches that follows regulations should be installed. They should be 1-hour-fire rated and place 1.5 metres from a flue joint. This will facilitate easier inspections for your gas boiler heating system. A reliable Gas Safe engineer should inform you about the risks of concealed boiler flues and give you advise on inspection hatches. If the...

Gas Boilers and Gas Safety Check.

RJ Gas can help landlords with the Gas Safety Check requirement of the law As landlords, you are primarily responsible for the safety of your tenants. Under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, the landlords are legally mandated to perform the following tasks in connection with the heating and hot water systems that are utilized within their rented property. RJ Gas, with it’s over 75 years of combined experience with gas appliances, can make sure that all legal requirements are complied with for the safety of the tenants that are living within your rented property. Landlords are legally responsible in maintaining and repairing all gas appliances within their property. Landlords are  legally required to repair boilers, gas pipework, flues, and other gas appliances located within their property that are used for heating and hot water systems, and maintain them functioning in optimum conditions. Although it is not mandated, installing carbon monoxide (CO2) alarms are also highly-recommended by the HSE.  Getting your boilers and other gas appliances for gas safety check certification. While the annual servicing of boilers is not legally required, as landlords, you are legally mandated to have your gas appliances used for heating and hot water systems inspected annually for gas safety check certification. These inspections can, aside from fulfilling the requirements of the law, can easily pick-up potential faults in your gas boilers and prevent costly repair in the future. This may also prevent the hassles of any legal actions against you as a landlord from any party. For these inspections, you must always remember the following. The Gas Safety Inspection Check (CP12) must...

Gas Safety and Carbon Monoxide

Scared of carbon monoxide? You should be! This odorless and colorless gas can be deadly and unfortunately they can be very difficult to detect. When unnoticed it can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that is produced when there is an incomplete buring of gas and LPG. This can happen in either industrial or domestic setting and there are gas-powered appliances or equipments. This is also produced when gas appliances are poorly fitted or badly maintained and if chimneys or flues are blocked. When this substance is inhaled and gets into your bloodstream, it can prevent your red blood cells from carrying oxygen. Without the presence of oxygen, your tissues and cells will die. Carbon monoxide poisoning can also have long term effects such as paralysis and brain damage. This occurs because gas leaks are sometimes left unnoticed for some time. Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Each individual has different carbon monoxide tolerance levels. Nevertheless, this gas is dangerous. In order to be safe at home, you must remember the six (6) main symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. Headache Dizziness Nausea Breathlessness Collapse Unconsciousness Some of these symptoms can be mistaken for a flu or other health-related illnesses. The symptoms should point out to carbon monoxide poisoning if everyone inside your house is experiencing the same and all of these disappear everytime you leave your home. There are also other ways to check if there is a gas leak. Look at the flames on your cooker. You want to see crisp blue flame. If you’re seeing yellow or orange then it could be a...

Boilers and Gas Leaks

Gas leaks at home can be caused by a poorly fitted and maintained boilers, heaters and fireplaces. This incident can be deadly because it can lead to fire, explosion and carbon monoxide poisoning. Gas Leaks and Carbon Monoxide Carbon monoxide is a deadly gas formed when gas or LPG is not burned completely. Because it is a colorless and odorless gas, it is often very difficult to detect. However, there are symptoms that you should look out for because these clearly point to carbon monoxide poisoning: headache dizziness nausea breathlessness collapse unconsciousness If everyone at home is feeling the same symptoms, this is most likely a carbon monoxide poisoning. What you can do is open all doors and windows, get out of the house, call for help and head to the nearest hospital when necessary. Detecting and Preventing Gas Leaks Aside from the tell-tale symptoms of the presence of carbon monoxide, you can look at your appliances because they can indicate gas leak even if you can’t smell it. You want to be in the lookout for a crisp blue flame instead of a yellow or an orange flame. Check for any soot or black scorched areas in your appliances. Another good indication is the musty smell and excessive condensation found on your windows. Prevention is always better than having to deal with a bigger problem in the end. You can start with the installation of your appliances. Always get an accredited Gas Safety Engineer to complete the installation. Consider getting the service of a Gas Safety Engineer to do boiler maintenance and service so your boilers will be...

How To Handle A Carbon Monoxide Leak

Knowing how to handle a carbon monoxide leak can save your life and your family’s.   Carbon Monoxide: What is it? Carbon monoxide is a chemical compound that is colorless, odorless and tasteless. This gas is only slightly lighter than air, thus it is hard to differentiate. Over exposure to carbon monoxide or amounts of it in high quantities is lethal. Small quantities of this gas is found in animal metabolism. Some carbon monoxide particles can also be found in the atmosphere as a result of volcanic activity. It can also be present in urbanized areas, and can come from toxic fumes from various vehicles.   Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Indoors. carbon monoxide can come from malfunctioning gas appliances. Some examples are boilers, ranges, cookers, ovens, water heaters, air conditioners and machines that use gas such as generators. In areas that are enclosed, small carbon monoxide leaks can rise to dangerous and deadly levels pretty fast. Because you cannot see, smell or taste the poison, it can kill you without putting up a fight. In the US, an average of 170 people die every year because of carbon monoxide poisoning. Thousands are treated in hospitals due to exposure to smaller, non -lethal amounts of the gas. In the UK, carbon monoxide poisoning leads to about 50 deaths in England and Wales alone. The numbers especially rise during winter, when home owners use gas appliances like heaters more than any other time of the year.   How To Handle A Carbon Monoxide Leak It is important for every home owner to have the basic know -how on how to handle a...
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