The City of Austin recently passed an ordinance requiring Carbon Monoxide detectors in all Austin homes that have a gas or fuel-burning appliance in the house or has a connected garage.
Read more about it here:
Some best practices from The Family Handyman.
- Make sure you have at least one carbon monoxide detector on each level of your home, including the basement.
- Locate carbon monoxide detectors near bedrooms – close enough so that they’ll wake you up if they go off in the middle of the night.
- Mount detectors on the wall at least a couple feet below your ceiling or even lower. Carbon monoxide often won’t rise all the way up to the ceiling (like smoke does) until the concentration of the gas is at a critically dangerous level. Additionally, some carbon monoxide detectors have digital readouts – mount those kinds of detectors at eye level so you can read them. If you have pets or curious children, you’ll need to find somewhere the detector won’t be bothered.
- The detecting mechanisms in carbon monoxide detectors need to stay at stable temperatures and humidities to work properly. Keep them out of direct sunlight and away from fixtures that generate heat (appliances, lights, radiators, etc.) and out of overly humid areas (bathrooms, laundry rooms, etc.). Keep in mind air flow, too: Don’t mount carbon monoxide detectors by windows that are often opened or in dead air spaces.
- Don’t cover the detectors. Keep them mounted out in the open and away from curtains, furniture or shelves that could potentially block them or interfere with normal air flow to the sensors.
- If your house has an attached garage, make sure you have a carbon monoxide detector mounted inside the house within 10 feet of the door to the garage. A running car could very easily elevate levels of carbon monoxide in the home.
- Make your carbon monoxide detectors easy to test. Put them in areas where you can easily reach the detectors and check them every six months or so and get in the habit of replacing them when the manufacturer recommends it (most carbon monoxide detectors are good for about five years or so).