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CO ignorance still out there!!

I just read two stories about suspected CO poisoning.
The first in Virginia, was blamed on a propane leak that was along a street?
The second just happened in North Carolina where 40 sixth graders got sick. They are not sure if it was caused by CO? Shouldn't someone have a CO meter to determine that on the spot to make sure it don't happen again. Oh yeah, CO alarms are required in schools.
STEVEusaPA

Comments

  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,666
    I found CO in 'odd' places outside the mechanical room with my personal CO meter.

    I took it on a cruise and once found high CO levels on our balcony at the back of the ship. It appears the exhaust from the ship, because of the wind/temperature, etc was rolling down the back of the ship and into our balcony.

    I first started taking my personal CO meter with me when I read about the CO incident from gas (propane?) fired water heaters at a resort somewhere in Mexico (I think).

    Now my wife insists we take it everywhere when we go on vacations.
    steve
  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,246
    @STEVEusaPA , What is the make and model of your personal co meter?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,801
    captainco said:
    I just read two stories about suspected CO poisoning. The first in Virginia, was blamed on a propane leak that was along a street? The second just happened in North Carolina where 40 sixth graders got sick. They are not sure if it was caused by CO? Shouldn't someone have a CO meter to determine that on the spot to make sure it don't happen again. Oh yeah, CO alarms are required in schools.
    Yes CO alarms are required. Unfortunately the required alarms are UL listed. A false sense of security. 
    Personally in your residence as a minimum standard if your happy so am I. In public areas, Schools, places of public assembly low level should be req!
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,666
    SlamDunk said:

    @STEVEusaPA , What is the make and model of your personal co meter?


    steve
    SlamDunkCanucker
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,257
    captainco said:

    I just read two stories about suspected CO poisoning.
    The first in Virginia, was blamed on a propane leak that was along a street?
    The second just happened in North Carolina where 40 sixth graders got sick. They are not sure if it was caused by CO? Shouldn't someone have a CO meter to determine that on the spot to make sure it don't happen again. Oh yeah, CO alarms are required in schools.

    Can't fix stupid..............
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 1,465
    @STEVEusaPA , What is the make and model of your personal co meter?
    Are you sending in for calibration every 6 months (as they suggest)? 
  • SuperTech
    SuperTech Member Posts: 1,792
    @STEVEusaPA , What is the make and model of your personal co meter?
    Are you sending in for calibration every 6 months (as they suggest)? 
    Why send it in for calibration? I believe it needs to be replaced every year or two.  I have the same one and was very disappointed with that when I read about it.  Of course they don't mention that on the sites you can buy it from. 
  • Derheatmeister
    Derheatmeister Member Posts: 1,280
    I have the same Sensorcon Inspector and think it is made by Molex.

    Yes 2 1/2 to 3 years is about the maximum that you will get out of these.

    We used to send them in for calibrating but we now do this inhouse with our own calibration kit..

    Just like Steve i do not leave home without it ..

    Once we went for lunch in a local restaurant and both my and my employees Personal Protection devices were going "Crazy" on the Carbon Monoxide readings ,We are talking about readings between 400 ppm to 900 ppm, After investigating we found that the furnace had a crack in the HX which we then decommisioned.

    Just goes to show you that you never know where and when it could hit you..

    BTW and IMO My current Sensorcon is the third one i own..After the second one i did some researching of Carbon Monoxide PPE.
    I could not find a better one in it's price range.
    We used to run with the Testo and UEI PPE but we like the Sensorcon better.
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,122
    I roll with the Sensorcon too. The only think I don't like about it is that the alert beep isn't all that alerting. It's ok for quiet areas, but if there's much background noise you aren't likely to hear it. It does sound at 35 PPM IIRC, so a piercing alert might not be so good. Maybe another, loud, one at around 100 PPM.
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 638
    Once we went for lunch in a local restaurant and both my and my employees Personal Protection devices were going "Crazy" on the Carbon Monoxide readings ,We are talking about readings between 400 ppm to 900 ppm, After investigating we found that the furnace had a crack in the HX which we then decommisioned.
    So wait you just started poking around the back room of a restaurant and redtagged a furnace?
    ethicalpaul
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,647
    edited November 2021
    JakeCK said:



    Once we went for lunch in a local restaurant and both my and my employees Personal Protection devices were going "Crazy" on the Carbon Monoxide readings ,We are talking about readings between 400 ppm to 900 ppm, After investigating we found that the furnace had a crack in the HX which we then decommisioned.


    So wait you just started poking around the back room of a restaurant and redtagged a furnace?
    I'm also surprised, I was under the impression a cracked heat exchanger wouldn't leak CO as the firebox is typically under negative pressure and the duct side is after the blower.

    @captainco @Tim McElwain
    Is this the case?
    Obviously a cracked heat exchanger needs to go, there's no doubt about that.
    But will it typically pull combustion byproducts into the home?

    How do direct vent systems behave under such conditions?

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Derheatmeister
    Derheatmeister Member Posts: 1,280
    edited November 2021
    JakeCK said:



    Once we went for lunch in a local restaurant and both my and my employees Personal Protection devices were going "Crazy" on the Carbon Monoxide readings ,We are talking about readings between 400 ppm to 900 ppm, After investigating we found that the furnace had a crack in the HX which we then decommisioned.
    So wait you just started poking around the back room of a restaurant and redtagged a furnace?
    We went for lunch ..While sitting in the dinning area our PPE went off..
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 638
    edited November 2021
    Did you at least get permission from the manager to go back there? Unless you are an official like a city inspector or fire/police... Even if I was a HVAC professional and had permission I don't think I'd get any more involved than informing the owner/manager of what I was seeing and calling it in to the local FD. Don't many businesses already have service contracts? I'd hate to step on someone else toes. 

    Not calling you a lier or anything just asking because it just seems odds.
    PC7060
  • Zman
    Zman Member Posts: 7,294
    JakeCK said:

    Did you at least get permission from the manager to go back there? Unless you are an official like a city inspector or fire/police... Even if I was a HVAC professional and had permission I don't think I'd get any more involved than informing the owner/manager of what I was seeing and calling it in to the local FD. Don't many businesses already have service contracts? I'd hate to step on someone else toes. 

    Not calling you a lier or anything just asking because it just seems odds.

    @JakeCK What is your angle here?
    It's a small town. If a regular customer who is a highly respected heating guy told the manager there was a CO issue, I am sure the manager let them investigate, why wouldn't they? Just because you don't live in an area where folks look out for each other for the greater good, there is no reason to assume the story is not true. BTW, you are insinuating he is lying :/
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
  • captainco
    captainco Member Posts: 574
    The Sensorcon Industrial Pro should also vibrate if you bought the better one. It also has settable ranges to alarm. I have seen some last up to 6 years. You can test them in a ziplock bag and a little smoke from some matches.

    ChrisJ - The fact that all clamshell heat exchangers leak at the seams on new furnaces, they better not leak much. The problem here is that do you know how many thousands of ppm of CO a furnace has to make before you can get any measureable CO from a crack if it does leak. Think about it. Unvented heaters, gas logs and ovens have no heat exchanger and vent directly into a building. Yes you will get some measureable CO but that is with a 100% leak.

    Large holes in heat exchangers can cause combustion interference and high CO but rarely do small cracks. Why don't we understand that cracks in heat exchangers is caused by poor operation of the equipment in the first place not CO/

    ChrisJ
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,647
    Zman said:

    JakeCK said:

    Did you at least get permission from the manager to go back there? Unless you are an official like a city inspector or fire/police... Even if I was a HVAC professional and had permission I don't think I'd get any more involved than informing the owner/manager of what I was seeing and calling it in to the local FD. Don't many businesses already have service contracts? I'd hate to step on someone else toes. 

    Not calling you a lier or anything just asking because it just seems odds.

    @JakeCK What is your angle here?
    It's a small town. If a regular customer who is a highly respected heating guy told the manager there was a CO issue, I am sure the manager let them investigate, why wouldn't they? Just because you don't live in an area where folks look out for each other for the greater good, there is no reason to assume the story is not true. BTW, you are insinuating he is lying :/
    I'd assume even in a big town if a HVAC contractor was eating in a restaurant and suggested there may be an issue the owners would likely cooperate.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    Zman
  • Derheatmeister
    Derheatmeister Member Posts: 1,280
    Zman said:

    JakeCK said:

    Did you at least get permission from the manager to go back there? Unless you are an official like a city inspector or fire/police... Even if I was a HVAC professional and had permission I don't think I'd get any more involved than informing the owner/manager of what I was seeing and calling it in to the local FD. Don't many businesses already have service contracts? I'd hate to step on someone else toes. 

    Not calling you a lier or anything just asking because it just seems odds.

    @JakeCK What is your angle here?
    It's a small town. If a regular customer who is a highly respected heating guy told the manager there was a CO issue, I am sure the manager let them investigate, why wouldn't they? Just because you don't live in an area where folks look out for each other for the greater good, there is no reason to assume the story is not true. BTW, you are insinuating he is lying :/
    Thank you Z man..
    We honestly just had a job around the courner, Got hungry like humans do, I offered to buy my employees lunch at an Irish pub.. we sat down in the dinning area and our PPE went off..
    We made Bernie (The Manager) aware of this situation and he asked us if we could investigate, We started with the kitchen because in commercial kitchens Draft hoods can create problems,
    After about a 20 minute free investigation we pinpointed the Furnace..
    Bernie was very appreciative...Yes this is a Small town were people still watch out for each other..

    I do not think that i would have reacted any different in NY City since it was a life treatening situation !!! Knowing NY ,I probably may have been told to go pound sand !

    BTW: Thank you "captainco" for all your training and you should know that you probably are saving many lives..

    Richard.
    GGross
  • captainco
    captainco Member Posts: 574
    I saved lives in the past but now I am grateful to all my students and the thousands of lives they are saving!!
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 638
    I graduated high school from a small one stoplight town, and actually lived in a neighboring town that was so small it comprised of only two churches, a townhall, and volunteer fire dept. Knowing what really goes on in small town USA under the surface veneer... Sure people look out for one another there. As long as you were on the right side of the tracks. I still wouldn't trust people. 

    And sorry for being suspicious. Just the way you put it made it sound like you just up and walked in the back and shut stuff down. 

    Now that being said here is something that should scare the hell out of anyone. During my kitchen remodel I discovered this behind a bulkhead and over range microwave. That pie plate was on the plaster and mudded over initally. As a stopgap measure I moved it to the surface of the chimney. It was servicing the hot water tank. Just imagine if a squirrel or some other critter had managed to block up the flu...

    Also notice any other dangerous code violations?

  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 12,647
    JakeCK said:

    I graduated high school from a small one stoplight town, and actually lived in a neighboring town that was so small it comprised of only two churches, a townhall, and volunteer fire dept. Knowing what really goes on in small town USA under the surface veneer... Sure people look out for one another there. As long as you were on the right side of the tracks. I still wouldn't trust people. 

    And sorry for being suspicious. Just the way you put it made it sound like you just up and walked in the back and shut stuff down. 

    Now that being said here is something that should scare the hell out of anyone. During my kitchen remodel I discovered this behind a bulkhead and over range microwave. That pie plate was on the plaster and mudded over initally. As a stopgap measure I moved it to the surface of the chimney. It was servicing the hot water tank. Just imagine if a squirrel or some other critter had managed to block up the flu...

    Also notice any other dangerous code violations?

    *Shrug*

    Electrical box hanging out of the wall.
    No GFCI on the refrigerator.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    JakeCK
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 638
    ChrisJ said:
    *Shrug* Electrical box hanging out of the wall. No GFCI on the refrigerator.
    Look real close at the back of the outlet box. The sheathing was stripped back out of the box. And if you look at the holes on the studs you'll see black romex stapled to the surface of the stud. Black romex going to an outlet with modern yellow romex at the box with no other boxes between them. My whole kitchen was like that... 

    CO poisoning risk, electrical fire hazards, bad plumbing, rotted header, leaking roof... list goes on. 
  • Canucker
    Canucker Member Posts: 708
    @JakeCK That sounds like typical life in an old house. It gets better when you catch up on the "deferred maintenance", I swear. Here's a pic of what I still have to get to in my home. That's painted over wallpaper covering a junction box in my living room. Probably one of the better repairs the previous owner completed. It has a twin on the opposite side of the fireplace. I'll get to fixing it eventually.Pay no mind to the awful wall finish, I think the earlier mudding was completed by using their hand instead of trowels

    You can have it good, fast or cheap. Pick two