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Old 06-02-2016, 05:29 PM   #1
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1973 25' Tradewind
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Co Detector location, where, how many?

Hi Folks

I am about to install a battery operated Atwood (made by Kidde) in my Tradewind.

I heard different things about the installation height. Do I install it close to head height while sleeping (about mid wall height) or about 5 or 6 inches from the ceiling?

Also I know it is suppose to go by the sleeping area. I have a bed in front, the gaucho, and then mid twins. I was considering putting one in each area what do you think? I don't care about the extra $60.00 if it is a reasonable safety measure. I am kind of paranoid about such things.

Your informed opinion would be greatly appreciated

Thanks,

Tony
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Old 06-02-2016, 06:13 PM   #2
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I heard different things about the installation height. Do I install it close to head height while sleeping (about mid wall height) or about 5 or 6 inches from the ceiling?
Near the ceiling. CO is only slightly lighter than the N2 and O2 in the air, but CO is typically also hotter than air so it will tend to rise and collect near the ceiling. You want the alarm to sound when the CO is still above your breathing zone, so ideally above head-high while you're standing.
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Also I know it is suppose to go by the sleeping area. I have a bed in front, the gaucho, and then mid twins. I was considering putting one in each area what do you think? I don't care about the extra $60.00 if it is a reasonable safety measure. I am kind of paranoid about such things.
If the whole trailer has an unbroken ceiling from one end to the other (no side-to-side walls that go all the way up) then you can get by with just one detector. But if you have walls that go all the way up, a detector in each room is best. It has less to do with sleeping areas, and more to do with whether CO can collect in one area while it doesn't collect in another. The reason for giving preference to placing detectors near sleeping areas is to ensure that the alarm will wake you up when it goes off. But if you have walls dividing your trailer into multiple rooms, include one in rooms you don't sleep in, too. Not including bathrooms or closets, of course.

By the way, if you're deaf or partially deaf, get a detector that has a flashing light to go along with the alarm— unless you routinely sleep with your hearing aids in your ears and turned on. A bright flashing light will improve the chance of the alarm waking you up if you have trouble hearing it.
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Old 06-02-2016, 06:52 PM   #3
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Mine is in the original factory position. Front of trailer interior on the ceiling.
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Old 06-02-2016, 08:45 PM   #4
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Thanks for the detailed info.

I installed the one I have and will buy the second one for the other bed area.

Tony
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Old 06-03-2016, 11:42 AM   #5
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Just remember that any fuel based heater (propane, gasoline or kerosene) is competing with "you" for oxygen in your RV. If your central heater goes out and you grab 3 small propane heaters you have changed the dynamics of your RV and you need to be "very" careful. I would recommend an electric based plug in heater as a safer alternative. At a minimum I would have 2 detection devices of different manufacture. This is a silent killer so you need to be careful!

I hope to purchase a 28'-30' Airstream this year. I can't wait to join the Airstream club. Plan on purchasing my tow vehicle this month!!!

Cheers,
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Old 06-03-2016, 09:22 PM   #6
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I have friends who routinely use their Catalytic Heater in all areas of the trailer (portable unit with gas supply hose). They have a CO detector and it has never signaled a dangerous reading. I routinely use my catalytic heater (mounted by the door on the end of the stove counter). I run the front fantastic at low speed feeding in, and leave the rear vent open about 20%. That way I have more than the recommended ventilation and any excess heat gets carried to the rear bedroom. None-the-less I sleep with an electric heater, not the catalytic heater.
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Old 06-04-2016, 12:11 AM   #7
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JCW- You are spot on in having cross ventilation. I should have mentioned that in my post. At my cabin I just crack a couple of windows to be safe.

Thanks,
James
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Old 06-04-2016, 01:19 AM   #8
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What actual device are you using?
And
Is it (or can you get) a combination CO / Gas / Smoke Alarm?
Or
Do you have to get multiple devices to accomplish all 3 Concerns?
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Old 06-04-2016, 07:32 AM   #9
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Is it (or can you get) a combination CO / Gas / Smoke Alarm?
You can, but you shouldn't. Three-way detectors are meant for home use to detect Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) which— unlike propane— is lighter than air. Since your Airstream uses propane and not CNG, the LPG detector should always be near floor level.
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Old 06-04-2016, 11:34 AM   #10
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Interesting using two detectors of different Manufacturers. I can see the potential merits in that thinking. My only negative to that, in my case, is it is one more different ugly white thing punctuating my Mahogany bulkheads. 2 of the same manufactures, really, is not much better.

Safety over looks.

Thanks.

Tony
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Old 06-05-2016, 01:12 AM   #11
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I could write several paragraphs on CO safety. For example, if you see a yellow flame on a stove or heater you are oxygen deprived. You can get CO poisoning in a tent. It gets cold and you light a propane heater or stove and slip it in your tent. A portable generator being to close to your camper and you suck the exhaust in via a cracked window or door. A broken exhaust pipe on your generator located under your RV. The list is long and it claims innocent people every year. I believe it may be the No.1 danger in camping. Not sure on how to get the word out to new campers.

Please don't skimp on the detectors and change the batteries twice a year.

Thanks,
James
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