Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Keep Outside Combustion Appliances Outside

Every winter I hear a few sad stories of people getting ill or dying because they decided to operate an outdoor combustion appliance inside their house. Most often, this occurs during a power outage. One example, someone decided to bring their charcoal barbeque grill inside the house to cook because it would also provide heat and they wouldn't have to stand out in the cold. They didn’t realize that burning charcoal creates lots of carbon monoxide. Their daughter got deathly ill, so they rushed her to the hospital. Fortunately, that got everyone out of the house and she recovered. Charcoal tells you right on the bag not to do that, but we don’t all read the instructions. You also hear about people running generators inside. Last year in Atlanta, a family died of carbon monoxide poisoning due to carbon monoxide from operating a generator in their basement overnight during a power outage. Gasoline engines should never be operated inside. A simple rule for staying safe is: if it is normally operated outside, keep it out there. Although there are probably many creative ways to use outdoor tools and appliances inside, there is usually a reason they are designed to be operated outside. I am sure most folks involved in HVACR already know this, but many of your friends and acquaintances may not. So do folks a favor, pass the word that charcoal grills, generators, and gasoline powered tools should stay OUTSIDE!  

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