381-8 Old Riverhead Road

Westhampton Beach, NY

Tel. 631-998-0780

Hours: Mon. - Fri. 9am to 5pm / Sat. By Appointment / Sun. Closed

The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide


November has begun and that means fall is nearly halfway over. With the inevitable cold weather on the way, most people have retired their shorts and sandals in favor of warmer clothing like jackets and scarves. For homeowners trying to heat their homes as the cool temperatures set in, many have already lit up their fireplaces this season. With the right maintenance done every year, fireplaces can add plenty of life, character and warmth to your home. However, neglecting the fireplace and chimney’s need for an annual sweep and inspection can have disastrous consequences. One dangerous result of poor fireplace care is a deadly gas known as carbon monoxide.

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The tiny molecule called carbon monoxide is produced in large quantities anytime combustion occurs. Any fuel burning, therefore, produces carbon monoxide, including gas ranges, car exhausts, wood stoves, and even lanterns. When any type of burning occurs in an enclosed space, the area will experience a rapid rise in concentration of carbon monoxide. You cannot know the relative levels of carbon monoxide without the help of a specialized, functioning detector, because this insidious gas has no scent, color, or taste. Thus, the effects of carbon monoxide poisoning can set in quickly, even before the victim realizes what may be wrong.

Signs of carbon monoxide poisoning include difficulty breathing, dizziness, nausea, and unconsciousness. To ease these symptoms, the person must be moved to an open, outdoor space. The reason carbon monoxide is so dangerous is that it moves more quickly than oxygen and replaces it inside the body. With the levels of oxygen in the body steadily depleting, the above symptoms begin setting in. Without reprieve, the body will suffer organ damage and eventually death.

For good reason, carbon monoxide is a serious threat that must be respected and avoided at all costs. This concerns your fireplace because, every time you light it, carbon monoxide flows freely from it. A properly functioning chimney expels the gas and smoke from the home, but without proper maintenance, this could change. For example, any obstruction in the chimney will cause the gases produced by the fire to back up into the home. An obstruction could be caused by an animal and its nest inside the flue, and this can be easily remedied by a chimney sweep and the installation of a good chimney cap. The chimney can also experience an obstruction through the buildup of creosote, which is a tarry product of burning wood. A chimney sweep can remove this, but if left to build up, it can cause serious problems.

To protect your home and your family from carbon monoxide, all you need to do this season is have an expert out to sweep and inspect your chimney. If you live in the Westhampton Beach area of New York, contact Beach Stove and Fireplace for a professional consultation.



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Our Location

Beach Stove and Fireplace is located on Old Riverhead Road between Montauk Highway and Sunrise Highway. From Sunrise Highway take exit 63 south, travel 1.2 miles and turn right at the 381 complex (just north of Gabreski Airport)