New State Law Requires Carbon Monoxide Detectors In All Homes

A new law regarding carbon monoxide (CO) detectors became effective in California on July 1 in order...

carbon monoxide detectorA new law regarding carbon monoxide (CO) detectors became effective in California on July 1 in order to save potential victims from toxic gas poisoning. After being signed by Governor Schwarzenegger last year, the law requires that CO detectors be placed in every household across the state.

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that is often referred to as “the silent killer” because of its toxicity. According to a recent press release, “Carbon monoxide is a product of incomplete combustion of organic matter due to insufficient oxygen supply to enable complete oxidation to carbon dioxide (CO2).” It can be found in homes that use older cars, gasoline-powered tools, heaters, and stoves and furnaces that are not properly ventilated.

"The law mandates that all California dwelling units be equipped with one or more carbon monoxide detectors", says Matt Liesemeyer of MHL Construction and Consulting, a Menifee-based contractor who installs CO detectors. "Landlords have to inform their renters about the about the presence or absence of CO detectors. In addition, if someone were to die in a home as a result of CO poisoning, and no detector was present, it becomes a criminal offense", Liesemeyer added.

Liesemeyer, who's been in the construction industry for 15 years, helps homeowners identify optimal locations for new CO detectors. "They should be placed one foot from the ceiling on every level of the home within hearing range, and they should not be placed in bathrooms or near fuel burning, heating or cooking appliances."

Since the July 1st law went into effect, few homeowners have installed detectors. "I would venture to say at least 90% of the homes in Menifee are without CO detectors", Liesemeyer said. "People don't really know about the law. There haven't been many publications talking about this."

With respect to enforcement of the new law, the City of Menifee won't be going door-to-door checking for CO detectors. Tony Elmo, a building official with the City of Menifee explains. "We can't go door to door to check for carbon monoxide detectors, but what we'll be doing is enforcing this new law on new home construction or when homeowners remodel."

"Enforcement is also handled during the sale of a property", Liesemeyer added "If trying to sell your home and it doesn't have a CO detector, you are required to disclose that to the buyer."

Liesemeyer offers a variety of residential, commercial and industrial improvement services, including lighting, kitchen, plumbing, and drywall, He also repairs real estate owned property after it has been damaged by foreclosure.

"I really want to let people know about the carbon monoxide law, and for them to be aware of the potential hazards,” he said. "I take my work very seriously. Every job I take, I focus on quality.”

Liesemeyer's prices vary, but he offers project analysis and competitive bidding.

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