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Where to Install Your Carbon Monoxide Alarm?

Updated: Apr 6, 2020

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless flammable gas that is slightly less dense than air. However, studies have shown no significant difference in measurements based on what height CO detectors are mounted. Different manufacturers recommend different mounting locations, and you should always follow the manufacturers’ recommendation.

CO has a molar mass of 28.0, and air has an average molar mass of 28.8. The difference is so slight that CO is found to evenly distribute itself indoors. It is worth mentioning that CO indoors is usually generated from incomplete combustion (heat source) and therefore traveling in a warm air stream. Warm air is more buoyant and does rise. Coupling this fact with the knowledge that CO is lighter than air…  I personally have my CO detector located on the ceilings.

Did you know?

If you only have one fuel-burning appliance, such as a gas boiler in the kitchen, you’ll only need one carbon monoxide detector.

But if you have other appliances, such as a gas fire, log burner or even a fuel burning and a range cooker, you’ll need to fit a carbon monoxide detector in each room that these appear in.

What Co detector should I buy?

We always say stick to a brand you know. The top 3 brands we recommend are Honeywell, Fireangel and Kidde and expect to pay around £20 for 1 alarm.

How to install your carbon monoxide detector

Setting up and installing your carbon monoxide alarm is a straight forward DIY task and can be as easy as sitting it on a high shelf in a room with a gas-burning appliance. 

Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on siting, testing, servicing and replacing the alarm. Most alarms will last between five and seven years, with some lasting for as long as 10 years. Pay particular attention to the unit’s battery life and when it will need replacing. Always mark an install date on the back of the alarm.

Where to install your carbon monoxide detector

Fit your alarm high-up in the same room as the potential source of carbon monoxide, around 150mm from the ceiling and at least 1 meter away from, cookers and fires. But make sure it’s not directly above a source of heat or steam. It doesn't need to be fixed to a wall, and a high shelf or kitchen unit is OK too.

It should be located at a height greater than the height of any door or window.

If the apparatus is located on the ceiling it should be at least 500mm from any wall and any ceiling obstruction e.g. light fittings.

How to test a carbon monoxide detector

Test your alarm regularly using the test button, replace the batteries annually or when the low battery signal sounds/ beeps. Sealed battery alarms have a battery that will last as long as the alarm and won’t need to be replaced. Test your alarm today.

If you need your appliance serviced and do not have a carbon monoxide detector let us know and we can have our engineer fit one for you when visiting your home.

> Call 020 8111 1230

> Email us at

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