A complete inspection with a written report designed to inform and
educate a buyer about the overall condition of the home.
Furnace Basics and Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide (CO) is continuing to be a major concern. Many of the existing properties have their original furnaces in them. These furnaces are used nine months out of the year, and most do not have routine maintenance.
Furnaces that operate dirty are prone to extensive damages. The blower motor must work harder to move air throughout the home. This is also true when furnaces have damaged and clogged filters. Routine maintenance is paramount for safe operation of any furnace or heating appliance.
CO is the byproduct of burning fuel or gas. Heat exchangers are designed to contain and move carbon monoxide up to the flue stack, where that stack will safely remove the unwanted CO into the atmosphere. The exterior of heat exchangers are designed to heat the ambient air and move that heater air into the home through the air ducts.
Understanding Combustion Air and Tight Homes
The amount of combustion air today is very limited due our attempt to reduce our fuel consumption. We are replacing our windows, doors, weather stripping, caulking and adding insulation. When I started in this trade there were no double pane windows in the basements much less steel insulated doors in the basement leading to the outside. There were old single pane glass windows and old wooden doors which, a lot of times you could see daylight around the door frame.
Today we have added thermopane windows in the basement, new steel doors complete with magnetic seals. We even insulate the exterior perimeter between the floor joists. All these ideas are good, but they steal much needed combustion air required for a safe combustion process. If your heating appliance is using indoor air for combustion you must be aware of the amount of combustion air that is required.
Carbon Monoxide and "YOU"
Carbon monoxide (CO), is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas which moves with air. It is highly toxic to humans and animals in higher quantities, although it is also produced in normal animal metabolism in low quantities, and is thought to have some normal biological functions.
It consists of one carbon atom and one oxygen atom, connected by a triple bond which consists of two covalent bonds as well as one dative covalent bond. It is the simplest oxocarbon, and is an anhydride of formic acid.
Carbon monoxide is produced from the partial oxidation of carbon-containing compounds; it forms when there is not enough oxygen to produce carbon dioxide (CO2), such as when operating a stove, furnace, or an internal combustion engine in an enclosed space. In presence of oxygen, carbon monoxide burns with a blue flame, producing carbon dioxide.
10 Easy Ways to Save Energy in Your Home
Most people don’t know how easy it is to make their homes run on less energy, and here at InterNACHI, we want to change that. Drastic reductions in heating, cooling and electricity costs can be accomplished through very simple changes, most of which homeowners can do themselves. Of course, for homeowners who want their homes to take advantage of the most up-to-date knowledge and systems in home energy-efficiency, InterNACHI energy auditors can perform in-depth testing to find the best energy solutions for your particular home.
Why make your home more energy efficient? Here are a few good reasons:
- Federal, state, utility and local jurisdictions' financial incentives, such as tax breaks, are very advantageous in most parts of the U.S.
- It saves money. It costs less to power a home that has been converted to be more energy-efficient.
- It increases indoor comfort levels.
Stairways, due to their inherent dangers, as well as unsafe patterns of use by homeowners, are the sites of a surprising number of injuries. A careful assessment of the risks posed by stairways can prevent unnecessary injuries.
Facts and Figures
- 1,638 people died from falls on steps and stairs in the United States in 2004. This figure is greater than the combined number of swimming pool and bathtub drownings for the same year, according to the National Safety Council. The actual number of stairway accidents is probably much higher, as many people who sustain injuries don't know why they fell, and others are too embarrassed to admit they fell, so these incidents go unreported.
- Elderly occupants are at particular risk of falling down stairs, mostly due to impaired vision, reduced strength, and poor balance. For individuals age 65 and older, 260,000 are injured every year in falls on steps, stairs and escalators, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
- Handicapped and young children are also at increased risk of sustaining stairway injuries.