CO Detectors and ‘False Alarms’

CO detector false alarmsCO detectors, or carbon monoxide alarms, are essential for the detection of a deadly gas, carbon monoxide (CO). This gas cannot be seen, tasted or smelt and is only detected with the use of co detectors. It is produced through the incomplete combustion of fuel, such as gas, wood, coal and oil.

Before we go on to look at CO detector false alarms here is some advice on what you should do if your alarm goes off.

What to do when your CO detector goes off

If your CO detector goes off do not assume that it is a false alarm, remember carbon monoxide can’t be seen, tasted or smelt. You should assume that there is CO present and should follow these steps to ensure your safety.

  • Stay calm, open doors and windows to increase ventilation
  • Where safe to do so, turn off any fuel-burning appliance
  • Leave the premises and notify other occupants of the potential carbon monoxide leak (you should also notify any occupant of premises adjoined to your home as CO can seep through walls and floors
  • Call Gas Emergency Services 0800 111 999 or a local Gas Safe Registered Engineer to check for the source of carbon monoxide
  • Get medical help for anyone suffering from symptoms of CO poisoning

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

The main symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are:

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: persistent headaches

Persistent Headaches

Having persistent dull headaches and tension type headaches.

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: dizziness

Dizziness

Having waves of dizziness or feeling light headed and off balance.

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: nausea/vomiting

Nausea / Vomiting

Feeling like you need to be sick (nausea) and actually being sick (vomiting).

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: stomach pains

Stomach Pains

Pains in your stomach or lower abdomen, sometimes accompanied by diarrhoea.

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: difficulty breathing

Difficulty Breathing

Sudden shortness of breath or difficulty breathing (dyspnoea).

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: tiredness

Tiredness

Having no energy or feeling tired, sleepy, lethargic and sluggish.

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: sudden collapse

Sudden Collapse

Sudden collapse, seizures or loss of consciousness.

Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms: confusion

Confusion

Confusion, difficulty concentrating and becoming easily irritated.

CO detector false alarms

A false alarm is when your CO detector alarms and where no carbon monoxide is detected by your engineer. There could be several reasons for this:

  • The carbon monoxide detected did not come from your own appliances but may have seeped through the walls or floor from a neighbour. Check if your neighbours have fuel-burning appliances that might emit carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide might escape from chimney stacks allowing carbon monoxide to enter your premises via a joint loft space.
  • The replace-by date may have been exceeded. CO alarms become erratic once expired. This is the most common reason for false alarms.
  • Excessive moisture from a bathroom may set off your CO alarm. CO alarms should not be installed in areas with excessive steam.
  • Lead acid battery chargers produce hydrogen gas which sets off CO detectors. Keep this in mind if you are charging your caravan/boat battery at home.
  • Freshly screeded floors emit a gas that sets off carbon monoxide alarms.
  • The carbon monoxide alarm that you have installed may not be suitable for the type of premises, for example if it is installed in a caravan, tent, boat or living quarters of a horsebox you will need to ensure that your alarm is Kitemarked to BS EN50291-2. Alarms tested to BS EN50291-1 are only for use in home environments and are not suitable for camping and caravanning.
  • On rare occasions if here is a heavy smoker in a room that is poorly ventilated the CO from smoking may trigger an alarm.
  • Homes that are adjacent to very busy roads may experience higher levels of CO in the home when windows are open as traffic fumes may enter the room and set your alarm off.
  • The sound that your alarm is making may not be the alarm sound to alert you that there are dangerous levels of CO present. Most alarms have several audible sounds to indicate things such as low battery warning or that there is a fault with the alarm. When you install an alarm read the user manual and get to know what the different sounds indicate. Keep the manual safe so that you can refer to it should the alarm go off.

Buying a CO detector

You should have a carbon monoxide detector in every room where there is a solid fuel burning appliance. Only chose CO detectors that have met the rigorous testing standards of the European standard EN50291. That way you will have peace of mind that this vital alarm has been manufactured and tested to the highest standards.

If you are looking for a CO detector that you can also take on holiday, for caravanning, camping or using on a boat look out for ones that are Kitemarked to BS EN50291-2. The only other consideration is if you would like a detector that gives you a visual display of CO levels.

Digital Carbon Monoxide Alarm - Kidde 7DCO
  • FREE delivery
  • Product Life: 10 years
  • Battery: replaceable AA alkaline batteries included
  • Warranty: 10 year warranty
  • Displays CO levels from 10ppm
  • Peak Level Memory - recalls highest CO levels
  • Ideal for domestic use and camping, caravans & boats
  • Kitemarked to BS EN50291-1 and BS EN50291-2
£16.91 inc VAT
£14.09 ex VAT
Buy Now
                                        

If you are unsure if you have the correct carbon monoxide alarm installed our customer care team are here to help. You can call them on 0800 612 6537 or email support@safelincs.co.uk.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Safelincs Celebrates the Return of Furloughed Staff

Safelincs Pompom Tree

Like many other companies, we had to furlough a significant number of our staff when the lockdown started to ensure the safe survival of the company. Now, three months after the lockdown began we have managed to bring back the majority of the team and it is hoped that the three part-time staff who are currently on furlough will be able to return to work in the next few days and weeks. Strong domestic sales as well as a number of large projects such as the Nightingale Hospitals helped to bridge the lockdown and a strong recovery is underway. People from all departments supported the sales team to handle the demand. A particular point of pride is that the company has been able to commence with a new member of staff who had been interviewed just before the lockdown began.

Throughout lockdown staff and their families were involved in initiatives to keep in touch and one of these initiatives was to make pompoms that have now been brought together on an 80ft long garland. This amazing garland has now been hung onto the company’s huge cedar tree to celebrate reaching the current milestones.  

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Getting ready to go back to work- COVID-19 assessment tips

The Government is now advising businesses to start going back to work if they are unable to work from home but they must put procedures in place to protect their staff and customers. For some businesses, this is a daunting thought, and knowing what to take into consideration can be a minefield. Here are some useful tips to help you make your COVID-19 risk assessment.

Warehouse staff wearing a face mask for personal protection.

Social distancing and PPE

Current guidelines state that a distance of at least 2 meters between people should be enforced, using markers on floors to provide a guide can be as simple as using coloured tape on the floor or you can use specially made floor markings with advisory text on them. Having a visual guide helps staff to know how far away they are from each other and gives confidence that they are a safe distance.

If for some reason, you are unable to adhere to the 2 meter rule you must supply PPE, such as masks and gloves for staff. Make sure that these are easily accessible and that everyone knows how to correctly wear the mask. You should also supply hand sanitiser at these PPE stations. Having a dedicated sanitisation stand may be a simple option to ensuring that the correct PPE is available at the right locations. Staff should be given clear instructions as to when to change gloves and masks to ensure that these items of PPE do not become contaminated.

Reducing group staff numbers

It may be necessary to look at reducing the number of staff you have working in the same area. Assessing if any of your staff can continue to work from home can help with this, but you need to be mindful that home workers have the correct equipment and that you are still taking their health and safety seriously. Providing these staff members with a home working fire safety kit will ensure that all fire and first aid risks are covered.

Be creative and look at different shift patterns, you may be surprised at suggestions put forward by your staff, so include them in your decision making. Look at the pros and cons of these new shifts, increasing the day to a 12-hour shift may sound daunting but with the balance of more days off in the week this is a really good compromise.

If you are unsure which infection control products are suitable for you, give our customer care team a call for advice 0800 612 6537.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

NHS staff discount, a little something to say thanks

To say thank you to all our care workers, for all your hard work and dedication during this pandemic, we are offering you a 15% discount on all our products.

We can offer you over 6000 fire and safety products and services to help protect you and your family, including smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, fire escape ladders, as well as first aid and burns kits. We also offer free services such as our smoke alarm testing reminder service to ensure that your alarms are in good working order and ready to alert you in the event of a fire.

To access this offer you can either use this form or go to the Blue Light Card website.

You help keep us healthy, we want to help keep you safe.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

A way to maintain your extinguishers and minimise the risk of infection

For many businesses finding alternative ways of working is becoming second nature as we look at ways to operate our businesses while minimising the risk of contracting Coronavirus. Maintaining your fire safety is one issue that must be addressed in this new environment. Traditional extinguishers require a qualified service engineer to visit your premises to test the extinguishers, putting you and your staff at risk. The P50 service-free extinguisher eliminates the need for a site visit and will save you money too!

P50 extinguishers can help you minimise the risk of infection

The unique construction of the P50 extinguisher means that you do not need to arrange for a service engineer to attend your site, instead, after watching a detailed training video, you will be able to carry out the annual visual inspection for your extinguishers. This gives you confidence that you are not introducing new risks of infection and addresses concerns whether visitors to your site adhere to your company’s social distancing rules.

There are plenty of additional benefits, too. P50 extinguishers have a ten-year life span before they need to be refurbished for a further ten years. They are kinder to the environment as they do not require a discharge and re-fill like a traditional extinguisher after five years and because they are made from 100% recyclable materials.  As you no longer have any service engineer fees to pay and the extinguisher has an extended lifespan, you will save over 50% of your usual costs per extinguisher.

To find out more about the P50 visit https://www.safelincs.co.uk/britannia-fireworld-service-free-fire-extinguishers/ or call 0800 612 653

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Fantastic Service, Despite COVID-19

It has been heartwarming to receive so many comments from our customers telling us that we are delivering a fantastic service despite all the restrictions that COVID-19 places on us.

We have put a lot of new processes in place to ensure that we are meeting all the guidelines and protecting our staff. Despite the vast majority of our 60 strong team now working from home we have maintained the exceptional service that makes Safelincs an award-winning company.

Here is what our customers say:

Whilst the difficulties that Covid-19 present are challenging we will continue to supply essential safety products and services to organisations and domestic customers to support and protect people.

Contact us today on 0800 612 6537 with your fire safety needs.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Contact-free delivery service

The coronavirus pandemic has affected us all and social distancing has now become part of our everyday life. Limiting contact with delivery drivers when your fire safety order arrives prevents the spread of the Covid-19 virus. To help or customers maintain social distancing we want to tell you about the new My Places feature on the Hermes App.

If your parcel is being delivered by Hermes you can arrange a contact-free delivery by uploading a photo of your preferred safe place (such as your garage, shed or porch) to the Hermes App, My Places. Your delivery driver will be able to see these images and will deliver your parcel safely to your personal safe place.

To find out more visit https://new.myhermes.co.uk/our-services/mobile-app.html. Safelincs is working closely with Hermes to ensure that your essential items arrive as quickly and as safely as possible to you in these unprecedented times.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Fire Door Retainers Hold Fire Doors Open Hygienically

With concerns of the coronavirus being spread through contact with door handles and hand plates, many companies and health care settings are looking for solutions to hold fire doors open; reducing the need to touch door handles, without compromising fire safety.

Fire door retainers, such as Dorgard Original and Dorgard SmartSound, hold fire doors open legally and hygienically.

Dorgard Fire Door Retainers offer easy-to-install solutions that can be fitted to an existing fire door in around ten minutes by your own handyman, without the need to book an engineer to install. By fitting your fire doors with either the Dorgard Original or the upgraded version Dorgard SmartSound, you can hold fire doors open legally and eliminate the need to open the door using the handle once the Dorgard plunger has been depressed. This reduces the risk of germs and viruses spreading. The Dorgard will let the fire door close automatically when a fire alarm sounds, as the devices recognise the sound of a fire alarm.

For settings where at night time the doors should be closed, the Dorgard can be programmed to self-close at a specific time.

Call us today to speak with a customer service adviser on 0800 612 6537.

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Safelincs have student for one week work experience

This week Daniel, a student from Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Alford, came to Safelincs for his work experience. Daniel got an overview of what the world of business is like and how each of our departments works together to create a successful business.

Daniel shadowed various departments such as HR, Sales, Products, IT and Marketing and carried out meaningful tasks in each area.  For example, in the products department Daniel was shown the product selection and listing processes and then completed a new product listing for an Evac+Chair Photoluminescent Sign. This experience showed him first-hand how a product is listed. Daniel said, ‘It was very useful to see how products that we take for granted actually become available to us.’

We ensured that Daniel’s placement at Safelincs was as interesting as possible. Throughout the week, Daniel was given a number of tasks typical for each department he visited. This included replying to mock customer emails, research tasks, such as finding an asbestos awareness course that met specific requirements, website evaluations on the Safelincs website and printing a new staff badge.

Overall, this has been a beneficial experience for not only Daniel but for us at Safelincs as well. Having students here opens up possibilities of future employment.  Daniel was a great student and we wish him every success in the future.

The product listing Daniel completed during his work placement week
Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Safelincs supports Buses 4 Homeless

Buses 4 Homeless is a social enterprise that was set up by Dan Atkins with a mission to provide 14,600 nights of sleep a year for the homeless. This exciting project, offering a three-month rehabilitation programme to vulnerable homeless people, is run from four refurbished double-decker buses and aims to re-engage homeless people back into the community.

Dan contacted Safelincs to ask for advice about fire safety and when we heard about the project we decided to get involved and donate a state of the art Zerio Plus wireless fire detection system, fire extinguishers, and a fire escape ladder. Installing the equipment enabled the first guests to be welcomed onto the project just before Christmas. Dan Atkins said “I picked up the phone and called Safelincs, spoke about the project and what we are doing. Everyone at Safelincs has been so supportive”. Dan went on to say “it is humbling to have such support”.

The buses provide four very distinct areas for the guests including sleeping accommodation, dining, wellbeing, and education. Each individual has the opportunity to work on their own specific areas and issues that led them to become homeless, learn new skills and help them secure employment. The programme offers the opportunity of long term mentorship to underpin long term success. We wish Dan and his team every success.

Buses 4 Homeless fitted with Zerio Plus wireless alarm panel and water mist extinguishers
Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.