What are Carbon Monoxide Fire Detectors?

Carbon Monoxide, known by its chemical formula CO, is an odourless, tasteless, invisible and toxic gas. It is produced by the burning of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, petrol, diesel and paraffin. If this gas is not vented correctly, it can build up and cause ill health and even death.

Home CO detectors detect the build-up of CO and alert residents that there is a risk of CO poisoning. Apollo do not produce this type of CO detector.

CO fire detectors, however, are used to indicate the outbreak of fire by sensing the level of CO in the air. They use the same sensing technology as home CO detectors, but are more sensitive and respond more quickly.

CO fire detectors have an electrochemical cell which senses CO, but not smoke or any other combustion products. They are effective in detecting certain types of fire such as smouldering fires. This type of fire produces CO which can be detected some distance from the seat of the fire.

Smoke detectors, however, will almost certainly give a better response to a fire that has produced a rising plume of smoke. CO fire detectors will give a poor response to flaming fires.

Apollo manufacturers a CO detector as part of the Discovery range. To find out more, download our CO detector literature PDF.

The Fire Industry Association (FIA) has issued guidelines for the use of CO detectors. To find out more, visit their website at www.fia.uk.com