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Author Topic: Is freon supposed to register on a CO detector?  (Read 3180 times)
gumpy
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« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2006, 05:19:41 AM »

So, last night, I went out and turned on the A/C, and with a spray bottle of clorox solution, I sprayed a mist into the evaporator intake, and let it get sucked into the evap. It improved the smell inside the coach. Now it smells like a swimming pool! The a/c ran for about 3 hours and the co detector only went up to 9 before I shut off the a/c. Didn't look this morning to see if it went higher afterward. Will be able to check peak levels later on.

I'm not completely convinced it's microbe farts that are causing the co detectors to go off as the a/c is used infrequently, and in fact hadn't been used for several months, so would have been completely dry when I turned it on the first time this summer, yet that one time was enough to set off the RV co detector. Maybe there's spores or dust or something in there that wintered over and somehow the detectors are picking up that.

There's no possibility these alerts are caused by actual CO being detected, so I've come to the conclusion that the CO detector in the RV is probably not going to work. I'll leave the RV model installed, but will will certainly install a cutoff switch so I can turn the damn thing off when it alerts. It was designed to be hard wired. I had to cut the wire at 3 am last year when it wouldn't shut up. I'd prefer to have one in for the winter use when I'll be cooking and  heating the interior with it closed up.

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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2006, 06:48:22 AM »

Found the following info on-line. Hope it is helpful ..

Most CO sensors use a tin(IV)oxide semiconductor device.  When heated
and exposed to a reducing gas the conductivity increases.  Early sensors
were heated to about 300 C and were not very selective for CO since they
also responded to hydrocarbons.  Variations of this device are used for
explosive gas detectors (methane, propane etc.)  and breathalizers for
alcohol.  Newer CO detectors run at 80 C for most of the time which
eliminates false triggering, however crude builds up on the detector at
this temp, so they are programmed to heat to 320 C every so often to
clean themselves.  During this time they are inactive, which isusually
not a problem since CO usually builds up slowly.
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« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2006, 05:54:48 PM »

Found the following info on-line. Hope it is helpful ..

Most CO sensors use a tin(IV)oxide semiconductor device.  When heated
and exposed to a reducing gas the conductivity increases.  Early sensors
were heated to about 300 C and were not very selective for CO since they
also responded to hydrocarbons.  Variations of this device are used for
explosive gas detectors (methane, propane etc.)  and breathalizers for
alcohol.  Newer CO detectors run at 80 C for most of the time which
eliminates false triggering, however crude builds up on the detector at
this temp, so they are programmed to heat to 320 C every so often to
clean themselves.  During this time they are inactive, which isusually
not a problem since CO usually builds up slowly.


Actually that would explain why the CO detectors and for that matter even Propane leak detectors
might false alarm...
hydrocarbons

Hydrocarbons are contained in most products except maybe Latex paint. Wood preservatives, Paints, Stains, Varnishes and most Polyurethane sealants, Sikaflex, and many items. The outgassing we may not notice because we get used to the odors but they are there. A closed environment such as a bus or rv with a limited air flow and fixed volume allows the smallest amounts of the released gasses to build up over time.

These odors or gasses are usually ignored by the human nose after exposure. It's like you don't notice how bad the bathroom smells after a big stinky until you get into fresher air. It's not that the human body doesn't detect it by smell but it can detect things that we are unaware of and respond by allergic reaction or even athsmatic responses.

I am severely sensitive to molds as is my wife. I can smell certain molds in a matter of seconds long before other people even notice, I start reacting within minutes and the results are not good. My wife just went through the allergy testing and when they hit the black and brown molds she nearly went into anaphylactic shock with a couple of hours.

Please be aware that cleaning products can cause not only air quality problems but after long exposures you can become allergic to even the faintest of odors. My nemesis is Chlorox Cleanup.with Pine sol a close second. This I discovered after doing extensive cleaning to eliminate mold and now I am allergic to the cleaning products smells.

I guess I got off the topic slightly, Sorry.. But after living is a decidedly moldy or cleaner saturated environment ( My old RTS ) I developed a few more ailments. I just added that because I think that its possible that the electronic detectors that we rely on to monitor our environments may also be reacting to odors other than specifically intended.

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