To the editor:
I am able to write this letter because a carbon monoxide detector saved my life not once, but twice.
The first time the CO2 detector went off my furnace guy told me the furnace hadn't been installed correctly and it wasn't burning the right fuel. I had to open windows to air out and find another place to sleep that night.
Last week, the detector went off again and I immediately called the heating guy. Readings in the basement were 600 to 700 parts per million. A reading of 100-200 ppm should only have 15 minutes of exposure. When I told him I'd had a headache of about two weeks, he said, 'I would think so with a reading like this. You are very lucky.'
I assumed that my headache was internal. I thought I was having sinus problems or I didn't sleep well or was catching a cold. Never would I have thought it was environmental. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas. There is no way you can know it's there-unless you have a detector. The heating guy told me that a lot of people will unplug their detectors and put them on a shelf when they go off because they don't think they are working right.
I'm telling everyone reading this, if you don't have a carbon monoxide detector, invest the $15 to $20 and get one. If your detector is seven to eight years old, get a new one. They are just like smoke detectors and do wear out. And most importantly, if it goes off call someone to check it out! It could save your life.