Carbon Monoxide Detector Beeping After Replacing Battery?

Home Security Tips Fire Alarm Systems

Is Your Carbon Monoxide Detector Beeping?

Published 11/05/2021 by General Security

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Editor’s Note: This blog post was originally published in October 2018 and has been revised to reflect industry updates.

 

Installing a carbon monoxide (CO) detector in commercial and residential buildings is extremely important, as it indicates the presence of the odorless, colorless, tasteless, and potentially fatal gas. An effective detector will sound an alarm or siren alerting those inside and warning them to quickly leave the premises.

According to March 2021 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): “Approximately 50,000 people in the U.S. visit the emergency department each year due to accidental CO poisoning.”

The CDC adds that of these instances, more than 430 will be fatal.

To ensure a properly functioning CO detector, homeowners and business owners must periodically inspect and test these devices. The first indication of a potential issue is a beep occurring anywhere between every 30 seconds to five minutes.

This could be one of two things.

A beeping CO detector could signify gas presence or a low battery. Regardless of the reason, further action should be taken.


Below we’ll discuss how carbon monoxide detectors can protect your loved ones and property, and why it’s important to conduct regular device inspections, testing, and maintenance.

According to March 2021 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): “Approximately 50,000 people in the U.S. visit the emergency department each year due to accidental CO poisoning.”

 

CO Detector Chirping

As previously mentioned, carbon monoxide could be fatal. Because CO detectors protect people from this dangerous gas, incessant chirping should encourage occupants to immediately leave the residence or place of business. This signals carbon monoxide may be present, and fire emergency professionals should be contacted immediately.

When listening for beeps from CO detectors, there are differences between frequencies and pauses. While these signals could alert a potential issue, it’s recommended to conduct further inspection.

Note the following CO beeps and frequencies below: 

  • Four beeps accompanied by a pause signal CO is present. Occupants should immediately seek fresh air and notify emergency personnel.
  • One beep per minute means CO detector batteries are due for replacement.
  • Five beeps per minute notes the detector has run its course and should be replaced. 

CO Poisoning Symptoms & Exposure

According to the New York State Department of Health: "If you suspect CO poisoning, have everyone leave the area to get fresh air immediately. Contact the fire department and the gas company or heating contractor.”

The agency also recommends scheduling regular inspections of home heating sources, such as furnaces, fireplaces, and chimneys.

Watch for the following symptoms if you think you may have been exposed to CO:

  • Nausea 
  • Chest Pain
  • Dizziness  
  • Shortness of Breath

The American Association of Poison Control Centers is also available for medical advice on this, and other potentially fatal incidences. 


Regularly Maintain & Inspect CO Detectors

Although some CO detectors have replaceable batteries, units with 10-year sealed lithium batteries will also beep due to an end-of-life warning. It’s important to keep track of a CO detector’s age and conduct regular testing, inspections, and maintenance.

If your CO detector has replaceable batteries, it’s recommended to change these every six months or during daylight saving times. As aforementioned, CO detectors eventually run their course—most have a shelf life of five to seven years.

Alarm.com Mobile Alerts

When working with General Security for fire and life safety technologies, you’ll have access to the Alarm.com mobile app. This detects carbon monoxide leaks alerting local authorities through 24/7 Central Station Monitoring. It also facilitates real-time alerts indicating your detectors’ low or missing batteries. While it’s still required to test and inspect devices regularly, having additional peace of mind is paramount in preventing injuries and possible fatalities.

 

Ensuring Health & Safety

If you’re upgrading current fire, life, and safety measures, or want to add a new system, consider working with a reputable provider, such as General Security for help with installation, monitoring, and inspections.

 


If you’re upgrading current fire, life, and safety measures, or want to add a new system, consider working with a reputable provider, such as General Security for help with installation, monitoring, and inspections.


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