We have many kinds of carbon monoxide detectors. Keep your home and family as safe as possible with an alarm that warns you at the earliest stage.
Start by looking for a device that's been evaluated by the Underwriters Laboratories of Canada (ULC), an independent product safety testing, certification, and inspection organization. After that, it comes down to choosing between plug-in, battery-operated, or hardwired, any additional features, and if you want a combination carbon monoxide-smoke detector alarm.
This type of CO detector is portable and plugs into any standard outlet. It comes with a battery back-up just in case of a power failure, giving you protection at all times. Make sure to regularly test the unit when it's unplugged to ensure the battery still works. Plug-in carbon monoxide detectors are usually the most affordable type.
Some CO detectors are hardwired into the home's electrical system and run on line voltage, with a back-up battery just in case the electricity goes out. The battery usually lasts about six months and starts to chirp regularly when it begins to die, signalling that it needs to be changed soon.
There are two types of battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors: lithium and volt. With a lithium carbon monoxide detector, batteries are sealed inside the unit and last, on average, for 10 years. When the device begins chirping to indicate an expired battery, the entire unit needs to be replaced. With volt-powered carbon monoxide detectors, you can find batteries for them just about anywhere. They are relatively inexpensive, easy to replace, and last about six months. An easy way to remember when to change the battery is when you change your clocks for daylight savings time in the spring and fall.
Unlike smoke, which rises because it's hot, carbon monoxide mixes with the air around it and detectors can be installed at any height or location. The only exception to this is if it's a combination smoke/CO detector, in which case it would have to be installed on or near ceilings, according to the manufacturer's specifications.
Good locations to place the unit include:
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