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Articles and other information related to fire safety equipment and procedures in Illinois.
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Do You Really Need a Carbon Monoxide Detector?

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Do You Really Need a Carbon Monoxide Detector?

As a Chicago resident, you may be curious if CO detectors are actually necessary in your unit. Do you really need to have one or do you only need it if natural gas is used? Whether you’re a property manager, a unit owner or a tenant, there are some things you need to know about carbon monoxide detectors and whether they are truly needed in your property.

Take a look at when they are needed, if your HOA needs to request them, or if you even have to be concerned with this product at all.

What is Carbon Monoxide?

It is a tasteless, colorless, and odorless gas that can be fatal if not detected early enough. This gas is emitted whenever fuel of any type is burning, such as gas on your stove or exhaust in your car. It can build up in concentration in your home if there is an issue you’re unaware of and you’ll never know what hit without a detector.

Some of the symptoms of carbon monoxide exposure include headaches, dizziness, fatigue, and those with heart conditions may notice chest pain or other additional symptoms not typical.

What Appliances Emit CO?

There are many different appliances in your Chicago home that could emit this toxic gas and you may not be aware of them. Here’s a list of appliances to watch for:

  • Oil based appliances that heat your home such as furnaces, fireplaces, or small space heaters.
  • Appliances or products that burn wood such as a wooden stove, wood-pellet stove, or a fireplace.
  • Propane, natural gas, and oil-based appliances such as your stove, cooktop, water heater and furnace can all emit this gas.
  • A generator that burns diesel fuel or other types of gas.

Do I Need More than One?

You should consider the number of detectors needed like you would your smoke alarms. You should have one on each floor of your home if you’re in a multi-floor unit. You should also have them outside of sleeping areas, in cooking areas, and in the basement of the building itself. If you have appliances in other areas such as a closed in patio, you want one there as well. You want people in the home to be able to hear the alarm whether they are sleeping or whether they are in the opposite end of the home itself.


These types of alarms are simple to install, just like a smoke detector is. You can work with someone such as Connected Fire Safety to make sure each apartment and hallway of your condo association in Chicago has the proper detection devices and safety equipment. While most people only think these are necessary during winter time, they are invaluable year-round. Grilling out, cars running in an underground garage, cooking with a leak etc. can all wreak havoc any time of year.

Be sure to protect your residents and yourself by installing these invaluable detectors throughout your Chicago property.

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