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Awareness: A little tidbit #2

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Went to check out a "moisture problem in the lower level". Seems as though the downstairs living area has been real humid since the basement was finished off. Saw a stainless-vented draft-induced boiler in the mechanical area, and the place kinda had that aldehydes odor going on. Zeroed in on the horizontal stainless vent; found it had been knocked apart at one of several elbows, and just drywalled right over! Found it with a fiber-optic camera by sticking it up beside a can light. CO detector alarmed, but they unplugged it and stuck it outside!

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  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,889
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    Proving once again

    you can't fix stupid!
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
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    Awareness:

    And another reason why in Massachusetts, on new work, a hard wired CO detector must be installed, wired in with the Smoke system so you can't do that.

    Of course, that doesn't mean that you can't just disconnect the hard wired ones.
  • Mark Eatherton
    Mark Eatherton Member Posts: 5,853
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    Personal experience with disconnected flue pipes..

    About 5 years ago, I was putting the finishing touches on a mongo snowmelt project we'd contracted to do. The mechanical room had a 60 gallon gas fired water heater serving the hot water needs of the East end of the home. The plumber had forgotten to place his catch pan beneath the tank, so they drained the tank to make it lighter, then bear hugged it to pick it up a few inches,and slid the pan beneath it. They inadvertently disconnected the flue pipe because the first elbow split in two. They didn't catch it.



    The house was being cleaned by the GC, so there were numerous maids running around, using hot water to clean the home. Yours personally spent the day in the mechanical room, with the disconnected vent. I didn't notice the flue gas odor. I noticed the condensation pouring off of the cold snowmelt return lines, but I didn't notice it until I had been exposed for 6 hours. When I finally figured it out, it was too late. I was suffering from minor exposure to CO. I had another emergency service call I had to do on my way back to Denver. I told the GC I had shut the heater off, and he arranged to have the split elbow replaced. I then began getting ready to leave.



    About half way to my next job, I realized I had left ALL of my tools back at that job. I turned around, and went back and picked up my tools. I left the job site and went home, completely forgetting about the other emergency service call I had scheduled for that afternoon.



    Talk about loopy.... If I had been wearing a personal CO detector, I would have know about the situation LONG before it became toxic.



    Travel safe out there. Good find Dog. CO sleuthing to the max. The HO owes you a great deal of gratitude.



    ME

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  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
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    Personel CO detectors:

    Everyone should have one who ever works around things that burn fossil fuels. Mine is in my computer bag at all times. I once found 60 PPM of CO in an airplane I was in. We were taxiing out the the runway slowly and the air flow through the ventilation system wasn't high enough to get rid of the heater exhaust. As soon as we took off, it dropped to zero.



    Cheap insurance. Is your life worth it?
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
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    Ice.......

    Great advice!! Which one do you use? I've been using the Uei, about the size of a small cell phone.

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  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
    edited March 2012
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    UEI

    That's the one I use.  The UEI CO 71A

    If it goes into the red zone, it makes quite a racket. I like it because it is easy to stick it into an exhaust and is easier and quicker than dragging out my Fyrite Insight. I stuck it into the vent of a Heatmaker ll that had an inner exhaust of plex-vent that had split open. It went to over 1000 PPM and I could only shut it off by pulling the battery. That re-set it. That's what you need to do if it goes over its limit.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
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    Thanks Ice

    For your response. What do they say at airport security when then they see it?

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  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
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    TSA:

    They have never said anything about it. When I fly to Florida or back, I have all my electronics in freezer bags. They just glance at everything. I think the last time I came back from Florida, some TSA person got weird about something I had but I don't remember what it was. I think I was too annoyed by having to go through The Michael Chertoff Pornographic Machine. I always carry a lot of rechargeable AA batteries, I have a charger in the baggie.. I made a special box out of cherry wood on the outside and pear wood inside which I milled to hold 8 batteries. I keep the lid on with rubber bands. I never thought anything about it until I was pulled out of line to go to a rubber room to open it. It set off something on the X-Ray machine. When I told him what it was and for, he asked me if I had considered selling them. (No) Now, I always take the top off and leave it in the security tray/box.

    When I fly to work, I fly from an unsecured airport to an unsecured airport. So I don't have to go through any security.
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