Our boiler breakdown cover experts are constantly warning of the dangers posed by carbon monoxide (CO). People who fail to arrange annual gas appliance servicing schedules and who allow their boiler to get into a state of disrepair are putting their own lives and the lives of their family at risk – carbon monoxide alone kills 50 Brits every year, with thousands of people hospitalised in this timeframe. Many of the survivors of CO poisoning – from 18% to 50%, by some estimates – will develop permanent and debilitating brain damage as a direct result of their exposure to the deadly gas.
Gas boiler servicing
But if you’re failing to protect yourself from CO poisoning, you may also be putting your neighbours in danger. Research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has shown that CO can penetrate through gypsum wallboard, regardless of whether the wallboard is of two thicknesses, double-layered, or painted and double layered. It appears that the porosity of the material allows CO to seep through it, with this blamed for cases of CO poisoning involving people living next door to those who do not keep their gas appliances safe through annual boiler services.
Scientists, led by Virginia Mason Center pulmonologist Neil B Hampson M.D and colleagues Todd G Courtney and James R Holm M.D, pointed out that their findings also show that carbon monoxide detectors should be mandatory in many homes without obvious CO sources, as exempting homes without gas-burning appliances and other internal CO sources could be putting people in multifamily homes in danger of CO poisoning.
Regulations relating to CO alarms and boiler repairs or replacements
CO molecules are microscopic, and the holes in many building materials are more than large enough to enable CO to seep through them and reach a high concentration in surrounding rooms. Many US states have made it mandatory for residences to be fitted with CO alarms, and while the Northern Ireland calls for CO alarms to be fitted in households that have new or replacement boilers and other fuel-burning appliances fitted, the retrospective installation of the devices is not yet a legal requirement in the UK. In England and Wales, CO alarms are currently only need to be installed in the same room as solid fuel burning appliances. The lax nature of these regulations may well cost someone their life. The only way people can be alerted of the presence of the ‘silent killer’ is through the presence of audible CO alarms.
While the above research into CO reinforces the importance of CO detectors in all residences, it also underlines the importance of gas boiler servicing. While boiler breakdown cover could save your wallet, annual gas appliance services could save your life, your family’s lives and even your neighbours’ lives.
Arrange gas boiler servicing alongside boiler breakdown cover! With our all-in-one boiler protection package, you can ensure your boiler works perfectly and that you won’t have to endure the consequences of a boiler breakdown for a second longer than necessary.