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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Carbon Monoxide Detector Proper Placement

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Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 09/27/21 08:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sjm9911 wrote:

Boon Docker wrote:

Sjm9911 wrote:

Co mixes readily with air. The amount its lighter makes really no difference. You can place it high or low. Just not in a corner where a wall meets a celling or floor. And yea, they expire after like 8 years. This is why dual propane/co detecters are placed low to the floor. The main thing is to have one and to make sure it works.


What ever is producing the CO is also producing heat, which causes the CO to rise. Not a good idea to have the detector low to the floor.


In all fairness, im a Deputy Chief of a professional urban fire department for 25 years. What I stated was a fact and a professional opinion. CO dosen't nessassarly have to have heat associated with it. And its so slightly lighter then air, it dosen't matter. But it is mostly caused from uncomplete conbustion. If they didn't work close to the floor they wouldn't make a combo propane /CO unit. Or plug in units. Dont belive everything that pops up on Google. I atually do this for a living.


EPA website isn't posted by "Google", if EPA stated something, I would tend to believe it over what a 25 yr Deputy Chief of a fire department says.

The combo propane/Co detectors are a hybrid device. In order for that detector to detect unsafe levels of combustible gasses like propane it MUST be at floor level where Propane pools (propane is "heavier than air" and pools at the lowest point of your floor).

The floor level while it may work for CO, is in reality less than "ideal" and may or may not be quite as effective. Ideally you would what it at least the height of your bed or higher since that is where you will be when sleeping and living (unless of coarse you crawl or sleep on the floor).

Sjm9911

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Posted: 09/27/21 08:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:

Sjm9911 wrote:

Boon Docker wrote:

Sjm9911 wrote:

Co mixes readily with air. The amount its lighter makes really no difference. You can place it high or low. Just not in a corner where a wall meets a celling or floor. And yea, they expire after like 8 years. This is why dual propane/co detecters are placed low to the floor. The main thing is to have one and to make sure it works.


What ever is producing the CO is also producing heat, which causes the CO to rise. Not a good idea to have the detector low to the floor.


In all fairness, im a Deputy Chief of a professional urban fire department for 25 years. What I stated was a fact and a professional opinion. CO dosen't nessassarly have to have heat associated with it. And its so slightly lighter then air, it dosen't matter. But it is mostly caused from uncomplete conbustion. If they didn't work close to the floor they wouldn't make a combo propane /CO unit. Or plug in units. Dont belive everything that pops up on Google. I atually do this for a living.


EPA website isn't posted by "Google", if EPA stated something, I would tend to believe it over what a 25 yr Deputy Chief of a fire department says.

The combo propane/Co detectors are a hybrid device. In order for that detector to detect unsafe levels of combustible gasses like propane it MUST be at floor level where Propane pools (propane is "heavier than air" and pools at the lowest point of your floor).

The floor level while it may work for CO, is in reality less than "ideal" and may or may not be quite as effective. Ideally you would what it at least the height of your bed or higher since that is where you will be when sleeping and living (unless of coarse you crawl or sleep on the floor).


You would belive anything that supported your argument, but you would still be wrong.


2012 kz spree 220 ks
2020 Silverado 2500
Equalizer ( because i have it)
Formerly a pup owner.

DrewE

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Posted: 09/27/21 11:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ferndaleflyer wrote:

Interesting--I worked as a contractor in Vietnam and lost 2 of my employees to carbon monoxide. A pump in a well stopped working and the foreman went down in it, about 40ft, to see what wrong and the workers above saw him fall into the water and another one went down. He to fell in the water. When they were got out it was determined that the carbon monoxide had killed them. I had been down in that well myself no problem but we in the meantime had started a diesel power station right above the well. We were told that carbon monoxide had settled in the well because it was a heavier gas. Were we told wrong? I have always believed that since then.


Are you sure it wasn't due to an accumulation of carbon dioxide, which is a bit heavier than air, and can cause asphyxiation if it accumulates in a closed place? Diesel engines, if adjusted and operating properly, do not produce a great deal of carbon monoxide because the fuel charge is burned with an excess of air and so incomplete combustion is nearly impossible.





Boon Docker

Mountain Foothills of Southern Alberta

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Posted: 09/27/21 11:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sjm9911 wrote:

Gdetrailer wrote:

Sjm9911 wrote:

Boon Docker wrote:

Sjm9911 wrote:

Co mixes readily with air. The amount its lighter makes really no difference. You can place it high or low. Just not in a corner where a wall meets a celling or floor. And yea, they expire after like 8 years. This is why dual propane/co detecters are placed low to the floor. The main thing is to have one and to make sure it works.


What ever is producing the CO is also producing heat, which causes the CO to rise. Not a good idea to have the detector low to the floor.


In all fairness, im a Deputy Chief of a professional urban fire department for 25 years. What I stated was a fact and a professional opinion. CO dosen't nessassarly have to have heat associated with it. And its so slightly lighter then air, it dosen't matter. But it is mostly caused from uncomplete conbustion. If they didn't work close to the floor they wouldn't make a combo propane /CO unit. Or plug in units. Dont belive everything that pops up on Google. I atually do this for a living.


EPA website isn't posted by "Google", if EPA stated something, I would tend to believe it over what a 25 yr Deputy Chief of a fire department says.

The combo propane/Co detectors are a hybrid device. In order for that detector to detect unsafe levels of combustible gasses like propane it MUST be at floor level where Propane pools (propane is "heavier than air" and pools at the lowest point of your floor).

The floor level while it may work for CO, is in reality less than "ideal" and may or may not be quite as effective. Ideally you would what it at least the height of your bed or higher since that is where you will be when sleeping and living (unless of coarse you crawl or sleep on the floor).


You would belive anything that supported your argument, but you would still be wrong.


Also don't believe everything that is said on an internet forum by people that think they are an authority on the subject.

Sjm9911

New Jersey

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Posted: 09/28/21 05:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That I will agree with , lol. We go on a lot of these calls, we go and check for co when the alarm goes off. All meters are a bit diffrent and sound at different levels. Some are better then others. Many just accumulate co and go into alarm when there saturated and give a false positive. Those are rhe cheaper ones, the good ones take samples and purge themselves. Usually at the time when they first sound around 30 ppm the co is more concentrated around the device thats causing the problem. The levels are not constant throughout a room. So if your stove is producing co, the levels will be higher at the stove, and less everywhere elese in the room. And the readings dissapate from the stove out in all directions. 30 ppm, is a lower number and really will not cause any health issues, even with long time exposure. So its set to go off way before there are problems. If it makes you happy, you can put it up higher, but it really dosen't matter.

Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 09/28/21 06:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sjm9911 wrote:



You would belive anything that supported your argument, but you would still be wrong.


Nope.

HERE is what one CO detector manufacturer says..

"Carbon monoxide (CO) and combination alarms should be mounted in or near bedrooms and living areas, on a wall place six inches below the ceiling to six inches above the floor. If mounting on a ceiling, make sure it is at least six inches away from the wall. Because carbon monoxide is almost the same density as air, it will disperse evenly throughout the air in a room. Our units have been tested and will perform between 40 degrees and 100 degrees Fahrenheit."

But, they also mention..

"Do not place the unit in dead air spaces or next to a window or door.

CAUTION: Carbon monoxide alarms will only indicate the presence of carbon monoxide at the sensor. Carbon monoxide may be present in other areas of your home.
"


Which I HAVE seen since I heat with a wood burning furnace and I have multiple CO detectors with digital readout in various parts of my home..

There are times when the coals burn down low enough and outdoor temp is just right the stack cools down and starts a downdraft pushing CO into the living space.

It is not unusual to get different readings in each room (all CO detectors I have have been checked side by side to verify they read the same).

The air circulation can vary a lot between rooms and between different heights.

Anything below 6 inches and above 6 inches are essentially air dead zones where air currents tend to circulate at a slower rate.

Now contrast that to a LP gas detector which its sole function is to detect a flammable gas which is "heavier than air" and pools up at the lowest point..

Where do you think it should be mounted?

6 inches or higher up?

NOPE.

The ones I have seen are less than 1 inch off the floor..

Had to replace a LP gas detector for my Dad in his 5th wheel, had one heck of a time getting to the release on the bottom of the detector. A flat blade screw driver was almost to thick to get between the floor and the detector.

Not to mention combo CO/LP gas detectors may be in less of a ideal spot depending on your RV layout of sleeping areas.

Not to mention, early CO detectors had a far lower alarm threshold, the first ones I bought would alarm at 10 PPM rise in 15 minutes..

Newer detectors the alarm threshold has been raised to 30 PPM over 30 days exposure.. Which is why I like detectors with a digital readout..

Per HERE

"Home CO detector alarms are designed to not sound when exposed to 30 ppm (or less) of continuous carbon monoxide for 30 days in order to avoid nuisance sounding."

I suspect a lot of "false alarms" kept waking up fire chiefs to emergency calls in the middle of the night might have been at play?

Honestly, if you have anything more than zero reading on a CO detector, there IS something wrong with your home or RV that needs to be addressed pronto, not waiting 30 days.

By the way, HERE is the manual for my current CO detectors.

While they do not say exactly what height to place, they do state to not install in "dead air spaces" which happens to be near the floor and near the ceiling.. Seems to me that 4'-5' from the floor or ceiling gets you as far as possible from "dead air spaces"..

Sjm9911

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Posted: 09/28/21 07:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You are correct, and thats what i said before, where floors and cellings meet walls are dead space. This gets into into air flow patterns, like you observed. But yes, 6 inches off the floor, thats not up by the celling. I did say, if you read back a bit do not place them where the floor or celling meets a wall. As far as the camper, In my pop up, it was just a propane detecter at the floor level, not a combo unit. So it sat at floor level. The combo one in the TT is up a bit more. The one you repleced might have been just a propane detector, or added on later.

And your stove will normally, when on , give off some co, anything that burns does. So 1 to 3 ppm is normal. The problem was the old detectors were only accumulative, so they took that little bit of co and it saturated the sensor untill the unit alarmed. It was inevitable. So the changes were not made because they bothered the fire departments, they were made because the units would alarm for no cause and create panic for the homeowners. Yes the he good detecters are the digital display ones, but they usually have to have to be plugged in to work, they would have a battry back up but that would only last a day or two. It needed ac power to purge itself and take samples. These were plugged in a lower outlet. The first one was a nighhawk, now made by kidda and were $$# when they first came out. If you have a combo one with a smoke, that needs to go close to the celling. A stand alone co does not. Some have a mute that will mute the 30 ppm co, but will trip again at 60 ppm. Like i said, high or low they will work.
And they always alarmed at about 30 ppm, I think the first ones were set at 28 ppm when they came out. The other ones, can not tell how long the co has been present. They just go off after a certain number is reached. But, there all a bit diffrent now.

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