Carbon monoxide, an odorless and colorless gas, kills hundreds of people each year and injures thousands more. To help prevent carbon monoxide-related casualties, many counties and municipalities distribute free carbon monoxide detectors.
Many local professional and volunteer fire departments offer periodic free giveaways that include carbon monoxide detectors and/or smoke detectors. Check the websites of or contact directly your local and municipal fire departments to find information on their free carbon monoxide detector and similar programs.
Carbon monoxide detectors sound an alarm that serves as an early warning of invisible but toxic gasses in a structure. In January 2008, according to the Martinsville, Virginia, Bulletin, a free carbon monoxide detector alerted a family to the presence of carbon monoxide gas. The family, including one young child and one infant, escaped the home unharmed.
According to the Home-Wizard website, carbon monoxide kills more than 200 people each year. To help prevent carbon monoxide-related illness or death, Home-Wizard recommends changing the batteries in a carbon monoxide detector at least once per year. In addition, detector owners should clean the devices once or twice per year.