Fire Department Offers Facts on Carbon Monoxide Dectors, Woodstoves

The Westford Fire Department, in conjunction with the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services, offers these facts about some things in your home you might not think about, but could greatly impact your safety.


The Westford Fire Department and the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services want you to know these facts about carbon monoxide alarms and safety from indoor fires.

  • Replace your carbon monoxide alarms at least once every seven years, if not sooner.
  • One sign that a carbon monoxide alarm is reaching the end of its life span is a chirping sound that does not stop until the unit is powered off.
  • Since the passage of Nichole's Law in 2008, nearly every residence in the Commonwealth is now required to have a carbon monoxide detector. 
  • Allow 36 inches of clearance around the appliance to prevent combustibles from coming into contact with heat sources.
  • Solid fuel heating appliances cannot share a common flue with chimney flues utilized by other solid, fossil, or gas fired appliances.
  • A qualified mason should inspect the chimney and flue before a woodstove is used. Cracks in the flue or mortar joints can allow flames and heated gases to extend throughout a home.
  • Most chimney fires occur due to a build-up of creosote, a tarry by-product of burning wood. Dry, well-seasoned hardwood can reduce creosote accumulation.
  • Don't use flammable liquids to start a fire.
  • Never leave children unattended near a fire.
  • Make sure dampers are open before lighting a fire.
  • Fireplace screens can help prevent flying sparks and embers from starting fires.
Bev January 09, 2013 at 01:12 PM
What about the NFPA720 which states you need to test that your CO Alarm is able to sense CO Gas on installation and every year thereafter. For more details see www.detectagas.com The test button on most CO Alarms tests the electronics - it does not confirm that the sensor is able to sense CO Gas. So, you could be pressing your test button and think that you are being protected - but you may not be. Test your CO Alarms now - DETECTAGAS


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