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Co alarm going off


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Guest sarks1

We were woken last night by the sound of our CO alarm going off. It really shook us! We eventually took the batteries out and rang the gas board this morning. They immediately sent an engineer and tested for CO but could find nothing. Just a bad product or what? We do have gas heating but it was switched off. Anybody experienced anything similar?

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I had one which was near its expiry date (10 years) and it kept going off, if I removed and replaced the batteries it was OK for about a week,then it started again. Finally I dumped it and got a replacement which funnily doesn't have an expiry date, but I still think the ten years life is still relevant.

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  • 3 months later...

I would suggest that if your alarm does go off that you open windows and get air circulating through the house. It is always best to call the gas board as soon as possible. Some friends had the same issue, being woken in the night by the co alarm. They did call the gas board instantly and there was a high level of co present due to a faulty boiler. Had they not acted so quickly they may not have woken in the morning. My tip would be always err on the side of caution.

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  • 4 months later...
  • 6 months later...

Although some what late in the debate, I met someone who had a carbon monoxide detector installed on a burglar alarm, after a few years it started going off for "no reason" Alarm company changed the detector, next day it went off again. Turned out the gas boiler was old and developing a "leak"

My point being that often people think that things are "faulty" when the truth is they are doing what they are designed to do. In this case, detect carbon monoxide.

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  • 3 months later...
  • 5 years later...

 My carbon monoxide alarm went of about an hour ago and it was so loud l turned it off, l didn’t notice what lights were flashing , l have now turned it back on and it hasn’t gone off , would it go off again if there was carbon monoxide detected . If there was carbon monoxide then surely the alarm would go off again

 

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Hi Susie

In line with BSI standard BS EN 50291-1:2018 a CO detector must not alarm at low CO levels for a specific period of time.

So, for example at a relatively low CO concentration of 30 to 50ppm the alarm must not go off for 120 minutes and in actual fact it does not have to go off at all!

At just over 50ppm it is not allowed to sound alarm for 60 minutes but will have to sound alarm within 90 minutes.

Odd, I know!

If you have low level carbon monoxide presence in your building (let's say 40ppm), your CO detector will take at least two hours before alarming! So when you disable the alarm this clock starts ticking again and you will not hear the alarm sounding for quite a while.

It is therefore not a great idea to disable a CO alarm. The CO alarm probably did what it is supposed to do and warned you about CO presence.

If you would like to see the actual CO concentrations, especially at low level exposure, I would recommend getting a digital CO alarm. The Fireangel CO9D has both a display for readings over 10ppm as well as peak reading display, so you can see what the highest reading was in the last few days.

Harry

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  • 10 months later...

My CO alarm suddenly started going off yesterday evening. It's an old alarm, probably about 6 to 8 years old. It is located in the kitchen, where the boiler and has cooker live. Both appliances are only just over a year old, were installed by Gas Safe engineers and were serviced and safety checked by British Gas in June of this year. The noise last night was annoying so having changed the batteries and reset the alarm, we eventually took the batteries out. Everyone is still alive this morning! Should my next action be to get a new CO alarm today, or call British Gas out to check the boiler and cooker? (We have a service contract for all the gas appliances with them). 

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Hi Jenny,  while I cannot advise on whether you have a CO leak or not I can state that a few years ago most CO alarms had only life expectations of 5 to 7 years. It should state on the side or back of the alarm when it needs replacing. Once expired, CO alarms become unreliable and might go off for no reason. These days most CO alarms come with 10 year life.

Harry

 

 

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  • 9 months later...

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