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Old 09-15-2010, 12:40 PM   #1
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CO detector sounded this weekend!!!

Hi All,
I installed a furnace last year, it vents through the wall to outside air. I'm always nervous to go to sleep with it on, but tried it this weekend and my battery powered CO detector went off at 4am! I regularly check my connections with gas leak detector and they all seem fine but there's one joint that I can't reach because it's sucked up within the belly, could that be it?? I feel silly letting one of the connection be out of reach...Maybe I should re-do? Also any suggestions for newer pipe options, the copper seems too rigid for me to drive around on the bumpy roads in the mountains????

THANKS!!!
Jeff
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Old 09-15-2010, 12:52 PM   #2
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A CO detector won't give an alert for propane. If you're seeing a CO alert, either water or heater exhaust fumes are recirculating into the trailer. This can be due to a flue problem, obstructed vent (wasp nests and cobwebs, the critters do love propane) or you had a window ajar and the fumes were blown/drawn back in.

Check your flues for obstructions.
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:44 PM   #3
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Low Battery's ?
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:52 PM   #4
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I have had the CO detector go off when parked at a rest stop amid idling 18-wheelers. I was in the middle of a short nap and that is a cruel way to be awakened.

Fumes, such as spray paint or thinner can poison the sensor. That happened to me recently when I did a lot of work in the trailer. I'll replace the detector before furnace time rolls around again.
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:18 PM   #5
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Always scary when alarm goes off, middle of the night the monoxide detector went off on boat, nothing was on and vents were open, only after reading about CO detectors did I find that some are sensitive to diesel fumes.

AS put in three CO, propane and smoke alarm. Smoke alarm saved us when some wiring caught on fire at a quick connect plastic ignited due to arcing.

I Test each one before a trip now.

Our CO is in the bedroom, if the genset doesn't set it off, nailpolish along with paint, varnish or furnace fumes might have blew back into trailer thru refrigerator vent, if they are close.
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Old 09-15-2010, 06:18 PM   #6
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We had one at home. Wife's hair spray set it off every day. We moved it to the upstairs hall. Then the deodorant spray set it off. We moved it to the top shelf. Then anything aerosol set it off. Threw the #!*%+\ thing in the garbage.
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Old 11-06-2010, 09:30 AM   #7
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Our co2 monitor saved our behinds last night. All of us (wife, dogs, me) were sleeping unusually hard and Werent moving at all. Turns out the furnace vent was obstructed by soot, and if it weren't for that detector we would have slept ourselves away. I'm buying a new monitor asap, just to be sure. The old one is going in a frame and will be hung on my super hero wall of fame.
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Old 11-06-2010, 11:33 AM   #8
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Which brand and model furnace? What will the remedy be?

Glad you posted.

Gary
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Old 11-06-2010, 11:34 AM   #9
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CO detectors can save lives, but they can also cause a lot of aggrevation with false alarms. (Like one morning a few years ago at the Grand Canyon in January one morning when the temperature was -5 )

Careful inspection of any combustion sources is warrented whenever the detector goes off.

I recall a few times some years ago when winter temperature inversions in Phoenix were causing smog levels that were setting off domestic CO detectors.
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Old 11-06-2010, 02:39 PM   #10
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Re-consider this abbreviated answer:

Quote:
Originally Posted by knunut View Post
Low Battery's ?
Jephellis, you said your CO alarm went off at 4AM. Were you dry camping and running entirely off your trailer battery? What's the age and condition of that battery? Are you relying on the Univolt or your tow vehicle to charge that battery?

Don't panic -- it happens to a lot of us. If the CO detector is one installed by AS, it is likely it has the built-in 'battery minder' function which sounds an alarm whenever the battery voltage reaches a set value. This is supposed to prevent damage to the battery and allow you to provide additional power so that the refrigerator, heater and hot water heater will continue to function (they all require nominal 12 volts DC to operate their printed circuit boards).

I suggest you acquire a decent digital AC/DC Volt/Ammeter and get someone to show you how to use it to check the current draw in your unit or have someone do it for you. Also check the output of your Univolt and learn about the limitations of the charger circuit therein.

It may have been solvents or fumes, but that needs verification by a more sophisticated CO measuring device than what is found in a home or RV detector. Your local fire department might have one; your local gas or oil service company definitely will have one. Regardless of who you have measure it, get the actual CO levels checked when your monitor is going off. And for peace of mind, check your battery's voltage when the alarm is going off, too. It just might be time to get a new battery...
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Old 11-06-2010, 05:37 PM   #11
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Ours has gone off numerous times. Never during the day, but usually around 4-5 AM ! it will sound off. This happens in the summer when all that is running is the air conditioner. Winter time when all that is running are the electric heaters. It will happen at least once it seams every camping trip. I now have a switch on it so it can be turned off when it sounds off. I have given up trying to figure it out.
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Old 11-06-2010, 06:39 PM   #12
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Hem, stupid question...

Mine went off while I had a friend visiting. The friend has limited sight and uses a dog... the dog was sitting right by the CO detector, and she farted. That apparently set off the alarm.

So... any pets that sleep near floor level?

Did you have chili for dinner?


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Old 11-06-2010, 07:37 PM   #13
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I heard something from my PO, that dogs can set off the propane alarm. One time mine went off when my dog was laying next to it. Scared the **** out of him and me too.
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Old 11-06-2010, 08:32 PM   #14
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No...no....no...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
Hem, stupid question...

Mine went off while I had a friend visiting. The friend has limited sight and uses a dog... the dog was sitting right by the CO detector, and she farted. That apparently set off the alarm.

So... any pets that sleep near floor level?

Paula
Please don't tell me that ..... we will never get a good night's sleep again. We have two of the gaseous dogs either side of the Mississippi/Pacos/Rio Grande!
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