Check your furnace and consider a carbon monoxide detector for your home

Friday, October 26th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

This weekend, the time and temperature will change - with clocks moving back and cold weather moving in. Furnaces will be lit and some won't work properly - which can cause fires and carbon monoxide poisonings.

A few simple checks can make sure your home is safe this season. News on Six reporter Emory Bryan says last year - an entire family in west Tulsa nearly died from carbon monoxide poisoning. Their heater malfunctioned - and their detector had no battery. Tulsa Fire Department Captain Hubert Rouse, "Somehow the vent pipe from the furnace had been knocked off or had fallen off, so basically the CO gathered under the house and started coming into the house."

But a simple fall checkup can reduce the threats of carbon monoxide and fire at the same time. Ahmad Mustapha with Wortman Heat and Air: "We go with a flashlight and look all the way around to see if anything is different, if anything is not in place, a visual inspection will tell us a lot.” And that simple check prevented a possible disaster at this house - a loose vent pipe was allowing carbon monoxide inside. "What happens is that the carbon monoxide instead of going out the roof will come back inside the house and carbon monoxide is dangerous."

A properly adjusted gas furnace burns bright blue - and works more efficiently, saving money. A check like this costs less than $75 - a regular maintenance step that can extend the life of an old furnace. But most importantly a good checkup spots problems, before they become threats.

The Tulsa Fire Department recommends every home have a carbon monoxide detector, but doesn't recommend a specific model.