Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2007 14:33:37 -0400
Reply-To: "Benedetti, Bob" <bbenedetti**At_Symbol_Here**NFPA.ORG>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: "Benedetti, Bob" <bbenedetti**At_Symbol_Here**NFPA.ORG>
Subject: Re: Carbon Monoxide Detector
Comments: To: Dan Crowl
In-Reply-To: A<46C2F4DD.9050405**At_Symbol_Here**>

Dan: I'm informed by one of the engineers here with knowledge of detectors that the hydrogen that off-gases from a charging battery will affect the sensitivity of the CO detector. Bob Benedetti -----Original Message----- From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of Dan Crowl Sent: Wednesday, August 15, 2007 8:43 AM To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Carbon Monoxide Detector Hi Jay, Over the past two years I have had my CO detectors go off in my basement. Of course, I originally thought that it was my furnace. The first year I had my furnace service person come out to check things out. The second time it happened a year later I began to wonder about what was going on. It turns out that on both occasions I was charging my boat batteries in the basement when the CO alarm occurred. I charge two large batteries for my sailboat. Both are in good shape. I do not understand what is really occurring. Does the charging produce CO, or is some other species (hydrogen?) being produced that confuses the alarm. An interesting situation. Dan Crowl Michigan Tech University Jay Toigo wrote: > All, > One of my colleagues and I received a call today from one of the fire > chiefs in our County regarding high carbon monoxide readings in an > enclosed space. This unto itself would not be a problem, simply > ventilating and turning off the CO producing device should suffice to > eliminate the source. There was no active device to produce the CO, no > actively running fuel burning device anywhere to be found. Upon further > inspection, it was observed that the CO reading increased when the > instrument was near the sump-pump, and that the battery in the back-up > for the pump was without water and that most of the plate area in the > lead-acid battery were exposed without electrolyte. A small amount of > heat was observed, but the battery was not on fire. The CO readings > dropped in the space once the battery unit was removed from the > basement. The occupant of the building complained of fatigue and was > treated at the scene. > The meter used for the analysis was a MSA 5 Star, which uses a > electronic sensor, for measuring CO. Unfortunately, wetted pH paper on > the tip of the meter input was not used, which would make this a simple > determination. I suspect that the battery had lost nearly all of its > water, and was possibly vaporizing the sulfuric acid, what surprised me > was the false CO reading and that the patient's symptoms mimic those of > CO poisoning. > Have others in our very knowledgeable group observed anything similar to > this scenario? > > Best, > Jay Toigo > Eastern Pennsylvania

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