Winter is right around the corner in Michigan, and that means a lot of us will be using generators and other equipment that can put off carbon monoxide fumes. Here’s what you need to know.

Where Does Carbon Monoxide Come From?

Carbon monoxide, which can be a deadly gas, is colorless, odorless, tasteless and non-irritating. That means you won’t even know it’s there – so it’s really important to pay attention to the symptoms.

Carbon monoxide usually comes from sources such as:

  • Appliances, like water heaters, furnaces, non-electric kitchen ranges that you use for heat, portable and non-electric space heaters, and grills.
  • Portable generators, which can release extremely high levels of carbon monoxide, or CO.
  • Tools and equipment like snow blowers, lawn mowers, chain saws and pressure washers.
  • Vehicles, which release CO in exhaust.
  • Boats, which you aren’t likely to use during a Michigan winter but still need to know about.

Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

It’s always a good idea to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home – or multiple detectors, depending on how large your home is.

Some symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:

  • Behavioral effects, like slower reaction time or altered driving skills
  • Chest tightness
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Fluttering of the heart
  • Headaches
  • Loss of muscle control
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Skin redness
  • Sleepiness
  • Visual changes
  • Weakness

If you suspect that you or someone else in your home has CO poisoning, the first thing to do is get everyone – including pets – out of the house immediately. Go to a location with fresh air. If you can, turn off all the non-electrical appliances in the area – but more importantly, get everyone out of your home.

Leave the doors open when you exit, too.

Call the fire department and the gas company.

Do You Need to Talk to a Disaster Remediation Expert in Ann Arbor?

If you’ve had a fire or another type of disaster in Ann Arbor, Chelsea, Dexter or a nearby community, we can help.

We’re here for you whether you’re dealing with water damagefire damage or something else, and we may be able to help you start moving forward again.

Call us at 734-352-9183 or contact us online so we can schedule an appointment to analyze the situation and help you get back on track.