What’s The Difference Between Carbon Monoxide and Carbon Dioxide?

One hears an awful lot about both carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide in the media, but what’s the difference between the two? They sound like they’re almost the exact same thing, so are they? The truth is that they couldn’t be more different.

Carbon dioxide is, for the most part, the byproduct of normal biological processes. For example, when you breath in air, your body processes the oxygen and then creates the carbon dioxide as a byproduct. As you might imagine, with so many people and animals breathing all around the world, there’s a lot of carbon dioxide present in the natural environment. You would be correct. As it happens, carbon dioxide is a vital cog in the great chemical machine that keeps our world lush and green. That being said, it is not entirely benign. When present at high enough levels, it can be harmful to humans and animals alike. Even worse, many scientists believe that its increased presence in our atmosphere is having a detrimental effect on the climate.

Although made of carbon and oxygen just like carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide is very different. It is the chemical byproduct produced by the incomplete combustion of carbon-based substances. Although carbon monoxide is a part of the natural environment (usually as ground-level O-zone), it is not nearly to the extent that carbon dioxide is. In fact, carbon monoxide is entirely poisonous to animal life at high-enough levels. Its poisonous effect is caused by the way that it simulates and replaces normal oxygen in the blood stream, causing serious health issues and even death. That’s why you should take carbon monoxide seriously by installing one of Crossfire’s top-of-the-line CO detectors in your home today.

For more on keeping safe from carbon monoxide, take a look at our carbon monoxide detectors over at Crossfire Alarms.

There’s A Fire In My House! What Now?

Your smoke detectors have done their job, and they’ve alerted you to a fire within your home. The very first thing that you need to do is remain calm and avoid panicking. While your instincts might encourage you to immediately locate loved ones in other rooms, exercise caution first! There’s no telling what might be on the other side of any given door.

Before attempting to leave the room that you’re in, make sure to feel the door before opening it. If the door feels hot, then that means there is danger on the other side. If this is the case, do not open the door. Instead, you’ll want to find the quickest exit from the room that you’re already in. If this means that you’ll have to exit through a window, remember that a sprained ankle (or even a broken leg) is better than being trapped inside with the fire.

If the door is cool, you can attempt to open it. Do so slowly and carefully though, and if smoke or heat begins to enter the room you’re in, then slam the door shut and seek an alternate exit. Remember that smoke is just as dangerous (if not more so) than the fire itself! If you’re able to exit through the door, keep low to the ground and guard against the instinct to gather personal belongings. Instead, exit your home by the most direct and safe route possible.

Once you’re out of the house, stay out of the house. Fires are a powerful force of nature, and whatever the situation was when you left will only be worse if you try to reenter. Make sure to alert the authorities if they’re not already on the scene. If someone is trapped, do not attempt to rescue him or her. Instead, wait for the fire department; they’re equipped to perform fire rescues. You’re not.

(Source: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/downloads/pdf/publications/fa-130.pdf)

The Growing Tragedy of the Turkish Mine Explosion

If you’ve been watching the news lately, there’s no doubt that you’ve witnessed coverage of the unimaginable tragedy gripping Turkey and the rest of the world. Due to an explosion within a mine, hundreds of miners have lost their lives. What you might not know, however, is that the explosion itself did not claim many of those lives. Rather, the acute and deadly effects of carbon monoxide poisoning did.

Within an enclosed and poorly ventilated place like a mine, people and animals are especially susceptible to the poisonous effects of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is the byproduct of incomplete combustion, and it can be produced by everything from an explosion to your gas stove malfunctioning. This is an important thing to consider while listening to coverage of this awful catastrophe. While the consequences of a mine explosion might seem incredibly remote to us within our homes, the truth is that the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning could be present in our living rooms and bed rooms.

That’s why it’s vitally important that you install carbon monoxide detectors within your home. Because carbon monoxide is tasteless and odorless, it’s completely invisible to all human senses. That’s why you need Crossfire’s state-of-the-art carbon monoxide detectors, which are incredibly sensitive and built to exceed industry and government standards. This gives you and your family unparalleled protection from carbon monoxide poisoning. While you might think that carbon monoxide poisoning is something that can only take place somewhere else, the truth is this: It could be a danger in your home right now. Don’t delay! Install one of Crossfire’s carbon monoxide detectors today.

Source: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2014-05-15/news/chi-turkish-mine-explosion-20140514_1_coal-mine-carbon-monoxide-poisoning-miners

Some Quick Tips To Prevent A House Fire Catastrophe

As the wise Benjamin Franklin once said: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure.” What’s true in general is most certainly true about yourself and fires within your home. Here are some quick and easy steps that you can take to give yourself an ounce of prevention.

  • Make sure your home is adequately covered by smoke detectors, like the state-of-the-art ones manufactured by Crossfire.
  • Electric fires are all too common. So make sure that you’re not overloading outlets or power strips. If you detect a strange odor or see sparks coming from any of your electrical appliances, unplug them and have them serviced.
  • If you have a fireplace, make sure that you’re having the chimney cleaned annually. Buildup of creosote in the chimney can cause dangerous and deadly fires.
  • Make sure that you and your family have an escape plan in case of the worst. In this plan, make sure to have at least two ways of exiting any given room. If you and your family know what to do, it’ll be easier not to panic if disaster strikes.
  • If you have children, make sure that you educate them about the dangers inherent in fire. Don’t let their natural curiosity become the ruin of your home and welfare!
  • Did we mention smoke alarms? We did? Well, make sure that you’re properly maintaining them, too! Test every month to make sure their batteries are charged and that they sound correctly. Don’t let negligence be the difference between life and death.

Hopefully by following these guidelines, you’ll be able to adequately protect your family and keep a fire catastrophe from becoming an ultimate tragedy.

(Source: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/citizens/home_fire_prev/)

Smoke Detectors = Life Protectors

In 2012, there were approximately 365,000 home fires in the United States. That’s 1000 a day, which is a staggering number when you think about it. Although we all try to protect ourselves from catastrophe, it is an inevitable part of existence that sometimes disaster strikes. When it does, it’s important that you’ve taken all of the necessary precautions to ensure the safety and longevity of yourself and your family.

A lot of research has been conducted in order to examine the statistics surrounding home fires in the United States. In one conducted by the National Fire Protection Association, it was found the 3 in every 5 fatalities as the result of a home fire were caused by either missing or non-functional smoke detectors. In most cases where a smoke detector was present, it was found that its malfunctioning was due to either a missing, disconnected or dead battery. This information is especially sobering when you consider the following: The NFPA found that risk of death as the result of a home fire was cut in half when there were working smoke detectors present at the site of the fire.

The lesson is simple: make sure that you regularly check that your home’s smoke detectors are working properly. Doing so could clearly be the difference between life and death. If they’re not working or if they’re out of date, consider upgrading to Crossfire’s state-of-the-art smoke detectors. Our detectors sound at a volume louder than the national average, and they communicate with each other to ensure that you and your family have enough time to escape in the event of an emergency. Don’t let yourself become a statistic!

(Source: http://www.nfpa.org/research/reports-and-statistics/fires-by-property-type/residential/home-fires)

(Source: http://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Fire%20Protection%20Systems/ossmokealarms.pdf)

New Rules For Carbon Monoxide Detectors in NC’s Hotels

The wheels of progress continue to turn, and the public continues to become more and more aware of the danger posed by carbon monoxide in our homes and places of business. A recent article in the Charlotte Observer discusses how the state legislature is looking to stiffen regulations concerning the presence of carbon monoxide detectors within North Carolina’s hotels and bed-and-breakfasts. The move by the legislature is in response to the deaths of three individuals at a Boone, NC, Best Western caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. The new rules would require hotels and similar businesses to further expand their network of carbon monoxide detectors and alarms within their establishments.

Having working and updated carbon monoxide detectors in your place of business, whether it be a hotel or otherwise, is a vital part of protecting workers and customers. Carbon monoxide is a tasteless, odorless gas that is extremely poisonous to humans and animals when present in high enough concentrations. The gas is produced as the result of incomplete combustion, and can be exhausted by any appliance that utilizes a combustion engine. In the case of the tragedy at the Best Western in Boone, NC, the carbon monoxide poisonings were the result of a defectively maintained and installed pool heater.

If you need to protect the workers and customers at your business from the dangers of carbon monoxide, then you should strongly consider purchasing Crossfire’s state-of-the-art carbon monoxide detectors. They are built to exceed industry standards and, once installed, can be expected to last for up to 20 years. Don’t delay in protecting yourself and your business; buy your carbon monoxide detectors from Crossfire today!

For more on keeping safe from carbon monoxide, take a look at our carbon monoxide detectors over at Crossfire Alarms.

Tragedy in Richfield UT Highlights the Need for CO Detectors

Recently, tragedy struck in Richfield, UT, when two teenagers died at their home of carbon monoxide poisoning. According to KSL, the teenagers had been operating a generator in their home to keep warm due to the family’s recent financial difficulties. In their report, KSL quotes the sheriff as saying, “It’s not advised to use a generator in an enclosed area like that. If they would’ve had a carbon monoxide detector, they may still have been alive.”

Indeed, the sheriff is quite correct. Due to misuse, generators cause numerous preventable deaths and injuries due to carbon monoxide poisoning each year. For the exact same reasons that one should never leave a car running in a closed garage, one should never under any circumstances operate a portable generator indoors. Generators are not the only possible source of carbon monoxide within your home, though. Any appliance that operates by combustion is capable of producing it at dangerous levels, and those appliances should always be checked regularly and serviced when operating defectively.

While precautions can be taken to guard against carbon monoxide reaching dangerous levels in your home, the only way to truly protect yourself is to invest in carbon monoxide detectors. Crossfire’s state-of-the-art carbon monoxide detectors are perfect for protecting your home. They are designed in excess of industry standards and communicate with each other wirelessly to offer you and your family an extra measure of safety. In addition, the detectors come in tamperproof battery-operated models that can be easily installed into your home’s CO trouble spots.

Source: http://www.ksl.com/?sid=29838517


Inside The Home of the Future

At an installation in New York City, popular consumer gadget blog Gizmodo recently hosted an exhibit they called “The Home of the Future.” In this exhibit, attendees were able to walk through a vision of what the home of the near future might look like. Not surprisingly, this environment was one of integration, one in which your refrigerator talks to your smartphone talks to your TV talks to your toaster. There’s no doubt about it. Wireless product integration is not only the state of things right now, but it is the way of the future.

While a smoke detector or a carbon monoxide detector might not be the glitziest of futuristic consumer products, they may be among the most important. That’s why we at Crossfire have taken so much care in designing our state-of-the-art smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. They are built with tamperproof, long-lasting lithium batteries that will allow your detectors to last up to 20 years. In addition, our smoke detectors take advantage of dual-detection technology, which combines the power of ionization detection with photoelectric. This makes our smoke detectors exceptionally sensitive, without producing as many false alarms as cheaper detectors.

Most importantly, we’ve built our smoke detectors and our carbon monoxide detectors with the future in mind! That’s why they communicate with each other wirelessly. This communication allows one detector to alert the others in your home to potential danger. This gives you and your family the extra time that you need to escape an emergency in your home successfully. So, if you want to update your home’s detection network to one befitting the home of the future, get in touch with Crossfire today!

Source: http://homeofthefuture.gizmodo.com/tour-the-home-of-the-future-in-30-seconds-1579166999

Hurricane Season: Be Careful With Those Portable Generators!

Summer is fast approaching and with it the onset of hurricane season. If you’ve been the victim of one of these natural disasters, then it’s entirely possible that you’ve decided to invest in a portable generator. Nothing can be worse than being without power for days or weeks, so it’s certainly understandable. But, it’s important to note that portable generators can be hazardous if used incorrectly. In fact, they are unfortunately to blame for several preventable deaths in the United States every year.

The important thing to understand about portable generators is that they work by combustion. Because of this, they pose the same dangers as any other combustion-based appliance. Namely, portable generators can produce unhealthy levels of carbon monoxide, which can cause serious and immediate health issues up to and including death. That’s why you should never under any circumstances operate a portable generator indoors, even if it’s in the garage. Running a portable generator indoors is just like leaving your car running in an enclosed space. It’s just something you should never do. Instead, make sure that your portable generator is placed outside in a location where it can safely vent the dangerous carbon monoxide fumes away from your home.

Naturally, when operating a piece of equipment that produces large quantities of carbon monoxide like a portable generator, you’ll want to make sure your family is protected. Crossfire offers a line of state-of-the-art carbon monoxide detectors that can alert you should your portable generator (even if it’s outside) begin to create unsafe levels of carbon monoxide around you and your family.

(Source: http://www.consumerenergycenter.org/tips/generators.html)

How FEMA Takes Fire Safety Seriously

Realizing the tremendous danger that house fires pose, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has launched an ongoing campaign to educate the population. Their campaign is called “Install. Inspect. Protect.” Although the program makes a wide variety of recommendations for protecting your home and family from the dangers of house fires, the primary recommendation of this campaign is to install working smoke detectors within your home. While prevention goes a long way toward safety, accidents do happen. And when something goes wrong, you need a system in place to warn you, especially when you’re at your most vulnerable—such as when you’re sleeping.

With respect to smoke detectors, FEMA strongly urges consumers to purchase long-life lithium-battery-powered smoke alarms. These are exactly the kind of smoke alarms that are produced by Crossfire. We take your personal safety seriously. While non-long-lasting smoke alarms may be cheaper, we believe that shortcutting the longevity of a smoke detector dramatically decreases its ability to protect you and your family in the event of a fire. That’s why our smoke detectors have an expected life expectancy of 20 years.

In addition, FEMA also recommends that consumers purchase and install dual-sensor smoke detectors, exactly the kind that Crossfire makes. These dual-sensor smoke detectors take advantage of both photoelectric and ionization detectors, which makes them more sensitive and capable of alerting you to danger. We don’t stop there, though. Our smoke detectors are capable of communicating with each other wirelessly, which allows one smoke detector to alert all others in your home of a potential fire. This added coverage offers our customers valuable extra time to react in case fire strikes in their homes and ensures that everyone will hear the alarm!

Source: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/campaigns/smokealarms/escapeplans/index.shtm