Is Carbon Monoxide Drifting From Your Garage Into Your Home?

Is Carbon Monoxide Drifting From Your Garage Into Your Home?

Is Carbon Monoxide Drifting From Your Garage Into Your Home?Many homes in Southern California have attached garages, and while they add a lot of convenience, they can also bring carbon monoxide (CO) into your home. Garages, particularly in older homes, may not be sealed well and the CO and other toxic chemical gases can come into your home anytime you open the connecting door. The negative air pressure your forced-air conditioning system creates as it runs can also pull air indoors.

A CO detector is an essential piece of equipment to use with an attached garage. It should be located at least 15 feet away from the door and any appliances that use combustible fuels.

To lower the risk of bringing noxious gases and carbon monoxide indoors, look at the joints at the floor and ceiling on the adjoining wall and connecting door. Use expanding foam around larger holes and caulk for small crevices and cracks.

Inspect the weatherstripping around the connecting door between the house and the garage. Choose dense weatherstripping material to replace the old weatherstripping. Remove the old product carefully and use a solvent to clear away any residue left behind. If your door needs replacing, choose a fire door. Unless you are fairly skilled as a do-it-yourselfer, consider hiring a building contractor to hang the new door to assure a tight fit.

Another effective way to stop the chemical emissions from yard or pool chemicals and CO is to install a bathroom ventilating fan in an exterior wall in the garage. You can connect it to a timer that runs the fan whenever you park or remove your vehicles. If you wire the outlet that you’ll use for the fan to a switch near the connecting door, you’re likely to use the fan more frequently. Run the fan for several hours after you bring your car in or move it out, or full time if you store a lot of chemicals, lawnmowers or leaking vehicles.

To learn more about protecting your home against carbon monoxide, contact Air-Tro, Inc. We’ve provided HVAC services for the Pasadena area and Southern California since 1969.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Los Angeles, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about carbon monoxide and other HVAC topics, visit our website.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock