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CO Detectors with Boiler Shutoff?

D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
Getting a boiler installed this week; I've heard of the Aerco CM-6 and Honeywell E3 CO and Gas detectors that can shutoff boiler and thought of having this put in. But I'd like to hear from anyone that's used them. My concern would be an off switch in case you get false readings that turns the heat off in dead of winter, longevity--most CO detectors last 3-5 years, reliability, etc. It sounds like a good idea but if a good tech does a combustion test annually isn't that enough? (Of course that wouldn't cover a natural gas leak.)

Comments

  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 718
    I cant see the benefit of that.

    If a UL listed (High Level) CO detector goes off GET OUT and call the FD!

    If a Low Level CO detector goes off, GET OUT and call the FD!
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    Yes, I already have three low-level CO detectors in the house, one right in the boiler room.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 718
    Low level or UL Approved?

    UL Approved can sit at 69 PPM and won’t alarm!

    Low level will alarm at 10- 15 PPM
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    edited March 17
    Low Level only. No UL. Used to use NSI. CO Experts also well recommended on this site. But due to their availability only to licensed plumbers I now use The Defender. But I'm hoping to hear from anyone who has used any kind of CO detector that shuts off boiler.
  • modconwannabemodconwannabe Member Posts: 46
    When we replaced our boiler a few years ago the plumber explained that NYC fire code required an smoke/co combo alarm in the boiler room with a lockout. It gives me real peace of mind.
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    @modconwannabe Do you know what make/model alarm you have? Any false alarms/shutoffs?
  • DZoroDZoro Member Posts: 753
    I'd be careful with the idea. Not saying I don't like it but.... I would be looking for one that will notify you before it actually shuts down.
    False reading could cause you some major property damage if you were to be gone for a weekend or longer....
    I remember the PIA of the water heaters when they were forced to have sensors on them for combustibles.....
    D
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    Yes @DZoro each solution brings new issues. I'd also wonder how long they last and how easy to replace--could just be re-attached wire ends at terminals of a new unit...With that NYC law I wonder how many false boiler shutoffs they get--which might be better than false alarms from the fire departments' point of view...
  • info43info43 Member Posts: 49
    I had a CO only alarm (Kidde 900-0120) wired to the boiler at the beginning of the season. I had no false alarms to date.
  • ZmanZman Member Posts: 4,853
    @info43
    It looks like you have a standard hard wired CO detector. Unless someone got very creative by wiring a relay on the interconnect wire, the alarm does not turn of the boiler. It certainly was never designed to do so.
    https://www.kidde.com/home-safety/en/us/products/fire-safety/co-alarms/kn-cob-ic/
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • LeonardLeonard Member Posts: 827
    edited March 18
    Looks like that detector has 3 wires coming out ( only need 2 for power). And ad says it can be interconnected to 24 other detectors. Heard this is so if one goes off they all alarm. Guessing just have to figure out what voltage that output wire goes to when it alarms and put in the appropriate relay (coil).
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 718
    The 3rd wire interconnects ALL detectors. It can also be wired for alarm company notification. Could it be wired to shut down sure but again I cant imagine why! False alarm while I'm away for a few days will be expensive!
  • info43info43 Member Posts: 49
    edited March 18
    @zman Interesting. It was wired by a local 3 electrician and it was tested by the insurance company during the annual inspection and it definitely turned off the boiler. I would like to hear from the licensed NYC plumbers here to see what they use.

    @pecmsg in 2017, my boiler inspector told me that it is now required by NYC and if I didn't get one installed, he wasn't going to pass my boiler inspection in 2018.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 718
    Appartments or private residence?
  • ZmanZman Member Posts: 4,853
    @info43
    If you get a chance, can you post a picture of the wiring?
    As Leonard mentioned, the 3rd wire is probably energized when it alarms. A normally closed relay would make it do what you describe. If have never seen it in a manual and doubt it is rated for that purpose.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • info43info43 Member Posts: 49
    edited March 18
    @pecmsg apartments, @Zman I will be at the building next weekend and I'll see if I can open it up.

    I remember the electrician saying that he was surprised that it was required because none of the supply electrical supply houses he went to heard of the law to recommend a model.

  • ZmanZman Member Posts: 4,853
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • brandonfbrandonf Member Posts: 169
    edited March 18
    > @D107 said:
    > Low Level only. No UL. Used to use NSI. CO Experts also well recommended on this site. But due to their availability only to licensed plumbers I now use The Defender. <

    CO Experts products are for sale on Amazon.
    Homeowner, Entrepreneur, Mechanic, Electrician,

    "The toes you step on today are connected to the butt you'll have to kiss tomorrow". ---Vincent "Buddy" Cianci
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    The units that have been recommended to me --the relay connects to the main unit-- are KIdde 21006407 and
    Kidde CO120X. I've always perceived Kidde as the cheap UL alternative to the NSI, CO Experts etc detectors and am not sure I want such a relatively inexpensive product attached to my new boiler. I already have three low-level detectors in the house, and as I said one in the boiler room. The Kidde units are anything but low level, but yes, would theoretically protect against high level.
  • BoonBoon Member Posts: 237
    @zman, I used that relay and some other parts to effectively connect my Smoke/CO detectors to the internet [of things] so I can get alerts through SmartThings. When an alarm sounds, SmartThings turns on all the lights & unlocks the doors. I think this is the write-up I followed when I did it. https://community.smartthings.com/t/integrating-kidde-smoke-co-sensors-into-smartthings-properly/53641
    DIY'er ... ripped out a perfectly good forced-air furnace and replaced it with hot water & radiators.
  • modconwannabemodconwannabe Member Posts: 46
    D107 said:

    @modconwannabe Do you know what make/model alarm you have? Any false alarms/shutoffs?

    I'd have to look but I think it was as others said above--a kidde or other consumer level combo alarm with an external relay that was added, so that if CO or smoke is detected it triggers the boiler. We have had no false alarms in 3 years. I get the concern others have mentioned and suggest you can use a $30 Roost or similar alarm notifier that sends a notification to your smartphone if an alarm goes off. Cheap insurance!
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    @modconwannabe So I'd download the Roost app on my iphone, hook it up to my home wifi, and install the Roost 9V smart battery in the Kidde Battery slot and then I'd be notified of any alarm?
  • sunlight33sunlight33 Member Posts: 188
    Would you guys recommend some good low-level CO detectors?
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    edited March 19
    @sunlight33 Read through the thread, three are mentioned.
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    edited March 19
    The other issue is if the power to the boiler is cut, does that automatically shut off gas --assuming spark ignition?
  • LeonardLeonard Member Posts: 827
    edited March 19
    If everyone is away on vacation, I'ld consider by-pass switch on CO shut off of furnace, so pipes don't freeze on nuisance or false alarm.

    Could wire up a high heat detector shutoff over furnace, if a major malfunction or fire.
    Burgler alarms with fire zone have them in "low" and "high" temp trips. High is commonly used in hot ambient , like attic. Seen some with 135 deg F or 194 deg trip points. They are typically signal level (low voltage and current) switches, so need a relay (low draw coil) and low voltage transformer.

    Now that I think about it I've seen 120V 15 amp high heat detectors, to kill all power to furnace.
  • modconwannabemodconwannabe Member Posts: 46
    D107 said:

    @modconwannabe So I'd download the Roost app on my iphone, hook it up to my home wifi, and install the Roost 9V smart battery in the Kidde Battery slot and then I'd be notified of any alarm?

    Yes. It's not perfect in that there's a minute or so delay, and I don't think you can silence the alarm remotely—I believe you have to be nearby or on your home WiFI or something. But it's a handy tool.
  • D107D107 Member Posts: 1,499
    Ah, forgot about the alarm sound, that could be an issue, though when the boiler shuts off on CO, probably the alarm sound continues...that could be an issue.
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