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Is it the flu or carbon monoxide poisoning?

Knowing the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning and having a low level monitor could save your life!!

As we come up on the cold and flu season, the number of life threatening cases goes up for carbon monoxide poisoning. Many who survive report that they thought they were dealing with the flu. As many of you will take precautions to avoid getting the flu, what will you do to protect yourself from carbon monoxide poisoning?

Most of us know that carbon monoxide is something you can’t see or smell and it can be dangerous and even deadly! Even low levels of carbon monoxide can be deadly! So, if you use gas appliances and heat your home with a gas furnace you need protection from the harmful effects of carbon monoxide poisoning.

By taking a few measures right now you can help protect yourself and your family from the CO poisoning.

First, know that the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to the signs and symptoms of the flu. According to the Mayo Clinic’s website, carbon monoxide symptoms include:

  • Dull headache
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Blurred vision
  • Loss of consciousness

Second, if you use any gas appliances have them inspected this time of year by a professional. That way you will know that the vents to your furnace, water heater, boiler and other fuel-burning appliances are not loose or disconnected and everything is properly vented. Having a trained heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) contractor inspect your central heating system is a good idea–over the course of the summer months the venting systems can become loose or disconnected from the venting system–which doesn’t allow the deadly fumes to safely escape. Having a professional HVAC contractor perform your heating tune-up now—is a good idea.

Lastly, take a precautionary measure by installing a low level carbon monoxide monitor. Please know that all CO monitors are not created equal–you want a low level CO monitor. A low level CO monitor lets you know there’s a problem before reaching dangerous, even deadly CO levels long before the other CO detectors even begin to work.

Check out this life saving testimonial from an M.E. Flow customer who had just installed a low level CO monitor.

We recently switched to M.E. Flow and you literally saved our lives by recommending installation of the NCI low level CO monitor. The alarm got us out of the house and the fire department arrived right away! The other CO detector did not alarm, even when the CO Levels were rapidly increasing….

–M. Winters, Lovettsville

If you would like more information on ways to keep your family safe from the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning this season please contact an HVAC contractor who is certified in carbon monoxide and combustion diagnostics. M.E. Flow, in Northern Virginia, can supply you with a low level CO monitor, perform a tune-up on your heating system and give you the information you need to keep your family safe.

This post is not inclusive to all precautions to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Please visit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) for additional information. Thank you for reading and please LIKE and SHARE this post– it could save another life!!

Check out our other informative blog post related to heating, cooling, & plumbing here.