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How do I know if my CO alarm went off because of Carbon Monoxide?

Guest dorothperk

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Guest Stranger Pete

We have a fire/ CO2 detector combined and this morning it went off. It first beeped and and said fire and then beeped again and said danger CO2 and quit. It was a constant beeping, and it hasn’t done it again yet as of 30 minutes ago. Could this mean that the batteries are getting bad? 

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For future reference:

CO2 is carbon dioxide and is found in CO2 fire extinguishers, also it is what makes drinks fizzy.

CO is carbon monoxide and is often found in improperly burnt materials. (Wood, gas, oil, coal)

Both are colourless gasses, carbon dioxide is heavier than air, and carbon monoxide is roughly the same density as air.

Carbon monoxide detectors can be activated by other gases, even newly laid screed has been known to activate a CO detector.

There is such a thing as a CO2 detector, they also detect other gasses and are used in some industries (They are also some what expensive)


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Guest I had a gas safety check

I had a gas safety annual check and the engineer was shocked that there were no dates on the CO alarms, he still signed the form to say they were in date and working, I have scince learned that there is no way of testing if the sensor is faulty if the batteries are still working it will still flash green if the sensor has gone. I rang him to ask why he ticked they were in date if there was no date on them and he rushed round the next day to give me a new paper saying they were put of date? He is a friend of my landlady and condemned my gas fire as he said it had never been checked because on installation it was silliconed in and the seal hasnt been broken, meaning the flu has never been checked in over ten years, he said he couldn't give me a new form until he had the old one back that he lied on, I told him I had shredded it but I didn't so now I have the one he lied on and another which he didnt the following day. How do I and where do I report him for lying in the first place?

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest Our Carbon Monoxide alarm

Our carbon monoxide akarm went off about 4am. I woke up and noticed I forgot to turn off the stovetop (gas). I immediately turned if off, and opened the front door by the stove and opened some windows. I woke up and checked to make sure my brother was awake/breathing. How long does it take to air out? My brother, went back to sleep. How do I know when it will be safe to sleep again? How long does the carbon monoxide take to disapate?  He's an essential worker. I keep checking on him. I won't sleep tonight. 

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Guest guest

Hello, I have 3 carbon monoxide detectors in my house, one in each bedroom and one downstairs in the kitchen, where the boiler is. One of the detectors that’s upstairs suddenly went off earlier today, beeped 4 times, paused then beeped another 4 times and that went on for about 2 minutes. I moved the detector from the bedroom to the kitchen and it stopped beeping after some time. I called 999 and left the house and waited for the emergency services to come, and when they did they checked all the detectors and then gas services checked for CO levels and everything was fine. So did the CO detector go off because it was faulty? Later when I went to place the detector back in the bedroom it didn’t go off again. Should I be worried?

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Stand alone carbon monoxide detectors detect carbon monoxide and should be installed near something that may give off carbon monoxide, such as a boiler, there is no point in having them in a room where there is no means of producing carbon monoxide.

It has been known for a carbon monoxide detector to activate at what appears to be random, and only for a short time (Such as happened to you) If this happens and the carbon monoxide detector stops and does not repeat then it is probable that there was a small pocket of carbon monoxide that has since dissipated, and is nothing to worry about.

If a carbon monoxide detector activates for a short time then stops, then repeats several times I would take the detector outside and if it does not stop, replace the detector, if it does stop put it back where it was, if it does not start, there is nothing to worry about. If it starts again open all the windows and look for a source of carbon monoxide (boiler) Get the boiler checked as soon as possible

I would also suggest that you have smoke alarms in each bedroom, not carbon monoxide alarms  as smoke alarms would be more useful, and preferably have interlinked smoke alarms, this can be done by either hard wiring them or radio interlinked. Either way smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years and carbon monoxide alarms should be replaced every 5-7 years (Some last 5 years, some last 7 years.)


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Guest Guest Lori

Hi, my Carbon monoxide detector beeped a couple of times, then read 218, then 888 then 0....is this something i should be alarmed about??  

Its plugged into the electric outlet.  Thank you!

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  • 3 weeks later...
Guest ange1o

My CO detector started beeping every after 30-35 seconds for about 20 times. This happened in 3 consecutive days.

I replaced it with a brand new CO detector (same brand). Just after about 5 minutes of it being plugged in, it started beeping in 30-35 sec interval.

Within the hour, I replaced it with yet another CO detector (different brand). Same thing happened, quick beeps every after 30-35 seconds for about 2 hours.

Right now the CO detector is quiet. Any ideas why this is happening?

Thanks for responding.

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Hi, clearly you have either carbon monoxide or other gases in the vicinity that trigger the CO alarm.

The first step has to be to search for a source of carbon monoxide. Do you have gas/oil/solid fuel appliances? Do your neighbours have such appliances? 

If this is not the case you need to check whether you have acid-lead battery chargers nearby or whether there is fresh floor screed. Both create gases that can trigger CO alarms.

Most likely the CO alarms are doing their job and warning you of this dangerous gas. You need to leave the building and get a specialist to fix the issue. Further information about CO dangers can be found on https://www.safelincs.co.uk/carbon-monoxide-information/



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