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You might not think about it, but carbon dioxide is very present in our everyday lives. It’s the fourth-most abundant gas in our atmosphere, and every one of us breathes out carbon dioxide thousands of times per day.
While everyday levels of carbon dioxide aren’t enough to cause us any real harm, under certain circumstances high levels can lead to headaches, fatigue and trouble breathing. “Protecting yourself and your family against carbon dioxide buildup is very important,” says John Nederhood, Service Manager at Mitchell Heating and Cooling in Colorado Springs.
Carbon dioxide levels are measured in parts per million (ppm). About 350 ppm is considered a “safe” level; levels of 1000 ppm or more are considered high, and should be reduced as quickly as possible.
Here are 3 sources of increased carbon dioxide levels to look out for in your home:
1. Lack of proper ventilation
Opening windows and doors will allow fresh air to flow freely and carbon dioxide to escape without becoming a health hazard. When an exchange of fresh air does not occur, carbon dioxide levels can rise quickly and dramatically. Poorly ventilated rooms where a large number of people or pets are present can also cause carbon dioxide levels to increase beyond normal limits.
2. Proximity to combustion
On cold nights you may be tempted open up the flue and get the fireplace working. As satisfying as the crackling sounds of a burning log can be, the burning process also releases carbon dioxide into the air.
“We all know about smoke inhalation, but the risk of breathing in dangerous levels of gases from a fire is also very real,” Nederhood says. “People will notice the smoky aroma that comes from a fire is but they won’t smell the dangerous gases.”
3. Fertilizers and soil decomposition
Whenever organic matter in soil naturally decomposes, carbon dioxide is released. In places where the soil been heavily treated with fertilizers, excessive amounts of carbon dioxide may exist.
The best way to detect carbon dioxide buildup is to have your home’s air quality tested by an experienced professional like the team at Mitchell Heating.
Mitchell Heating is a family owned and operated business dedicated to serving the Colorado Springs community through quality and affordable service. Whether you’re looking to test carbon dioxide levels or to repair your HVAC system, the team at Mitchell Heating has the experience to do the job right.
To schedule home inspection services or for more information about air quality, visit MitchellHeating.net today or call (719) 596-6677.
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