Carbon Monoxide Dangers

When a fire is burning in your fireplace your chimney works to vent harmful gases and vapors out of the home. Your fire produces carbon monoxide (CO), tar, particulate pollution, and more. While smoke inhalation is significantly harmful, it’s the carbon monoxide that is often called the silent killer. Carbon monoxide is not just a hazard of your household fireplace. It is produced anytime fuel is burned.

The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) has expanded beyond chimney safety. The CSIA Certified Exhaust Technician® provides technical training designed to protect homeowners from fire danger as well as carbon monoxide intrusion due to dryer vent damage and clogs! Many homeowners aren’t aware that their dryer vent can poison their home and family.

Carbon monoxide poison from the fireplace in Sunapee NH

Carbon Monoxide and the Body

Carbon Monoxide is dangerous because it is odorless, tasteless, and colorless. It can cause death in high concentrations, but over time even a small leak can cause organ failure and death. In fact, symptoms of CO poisoning present like a common cold, so it’s often overlooked for weeks or months before the problem is realized. By this time every one in the home can be affected.

Carbon Monoxide and Your House

Anything that burns fuel produces carbon monoxide.

  1. Heat appliances like furnaces, water heaters, and portable non-electric space heaters should be operated according to their manual, installed professionally, and maintained regularly according to the user guide.
  2. Cooking appliances like gas stoves should be professionally installed and never used as a heat source, only for cooking.
  3. Portable generators should never be operated inside the house.
  4. Equipment designed to operate outside like chains saws, weed eaters, etc should be kept outside. While doing repairs to this equipment you should remember to never start them in the house.
  5. Vehicles and boats should not be started inside the garage or shop without an open door to properly vent the harmful fumes produced.

Depending on the Professionals

The best way to prevent carbon monoxide intrusion from your chimney system is to keep it properly maintained. The annual chimney inspection is the best way to spot a problem with the chimney system before it allows carbon monoxide to affect your family. You should also schedule chimney sweeps as needed to avoid creosote buildup in your chimney flue. A creosote problem in your flue can quickly become an obstruction which can prevent the carbon monoxide from properly venting out of the house.

What You Can Do

If your fireplace becomes smoky regularly, you have a venting problem. If could be an obstruction, or it could be another issue with the system, but it needs to be assessed by a professional.

You should also invest in a carbon monoxide detector and check the batteries at least every six months. These detectors save lives every years, and Black Moose recommends that you purchase one before you light your first fire of the season.

For more information about carbon monoxide intrusion, see what the CSIA professionals have to say, or contact a chimney expert at 603.525.7905.

First Thing

John RantaJohn Ranta
17:01 22 Mar 24
They arrived on time, worked quickly and showed me the results. Prfessional throughout. jr
william greenwilliam green
23:21 14 Mar 24
Really helped me out can't say enough good things highly recommend!!!! The young man that came to my home was very knowledgeable and friendly great attitude all around answered all my questions and left me stress free best of all left no mess.🤙🏻🤙🏻
Michael Dell'OrtoMichael Dell'Orto
18:39 14 Mar 24
Jaime ConleyJaime Conley
17:13 14 Mar 24
Sarah GilliattSarah Gilliatt
01:46 13 Mar 24
A very thorough and careful job done! Thank you.
Larry CookLarry Cook
15:11 07 Mar 24
I wanted to give 5 stars but they are very busy which meant I had a good wait for both the inspection/cleaning, then for a quote on repairs and then for the repairs. Their prices seemed a little high to me but I have nothing to compare with as they were highly recommended by someone I trust and other companies had plenty of negatives reviews which kept me from getting additional quotes. I am happy with the work and they promptly returned to fix a mistake that had been made. Chris the inspector, Jennifer in the office, and Alex and his repair crew were all pleasant and took the time to answer all of my questions. Alex and his crew even took their shoes off (it was winter) before entering my house without even being asked! So if you are not in a rush and want to ensure you chimney is as safe as possible then I think you'll be happy with Black Moose.
Rebecca DeFuscoRebecca DeFusco
22:35 21 Feb 24
After a recent sweep of our chimney, it was discovered that our flue tiles were cracked. Black Moose techs were hard working, detail oriented and professional! Nice jobs guys! See you next year for my cleaning!
Karen CKaren C
14:52 14 Feb 24
Excellent I highly recommend Black Moose Chimney and Stove; Kelly and Liam are awesome, they did a great job. Extremely professional, arrived early, went through everything with a fine tooth comb ensuring pellet stove was thoroughly cleaned. They also were respectful of my home, conscientious and cleaned up after themselves. Made sure stove worked prior to leaving and told me to call promptly if anything came up afterward. Will definitely use them again.
Denise ClarkDenise Clark
16:32 31 Jan 24
We've had Black Moose clean our chimney for a number of years.But recently, we had an emergency situation at our home involving our chimney & oil furnace flue, which was caked full of soot from a malfunctioning furnace. They came & cleaned out both flues in no time, even going up on the roof with snow on it! They cleaned up after their work in the interior rooms where the oil furnace and the woodstove are located. Great work. Reasonable prices. Very nice people. You can't go wrong with Black Moose.
Joe GJoe G
18:30 24 Jan 24
Goods: The technicians know their business, very efficient in cleaning/inspection along with cleaning up after the 'dirty work'.Others: Communications could be more effective. Despite early coordination about scope of work (multiple flues within same chimney) the estimate provided did not reflect this and the final invoice was significantly more than the estimate provided.Quote for follow-on chimney relining was significantly more than that offered by other companies in the area (and far more than neighbors experienced for similar work accomplished by other companies)