Product Type: Kidde Home Security
Newest Review: ... British Standard BS7860 and will set off an audible alert for CO concentration levels over and above 45 ppm (parts per million). This is th... more
Member Name: Slim Lee
Kidde Thorn Permanent Sensor Carbon Monoxide Alarm
Date: 23/01/01, updated on 11/01/02 (3615 review reads)
Advantages: It detects an odourless gas and can save you and your family's lives, What? You need other reasons???
Disadvantages: None at all
After reading many reports and articles concerning carbon monoxide poisoning I finally decided to invest in one for my home. The fact that I have a gas boiler, gas fireplace, and a gas cooker really makes this device an essential purchase for me.
In choosing which make and model of alarm I consulted the back catalogues of “Which” magazine (as not many specific reviews were here on DooYoo at the time, hopefully more reviews will appear on here in time). The best place to get hold of one is from your local library.
In the end I chose a Kidde Thorn model, as they have a good reputation for making reliable fire prevention and detection equipment, and also had a good write up in the “Which” survey on detectors.
The specific model I purchased was a Permanent Sensor alarm, which basically means you will never have to change the carbon monitor in the alarm. Other alarms have to have the carbon sheet changed periodically (normalyy every year) and are similar to the spot type cards you can get to stick on your walls. This device is one that you can stick up once and only have to worry about replacing the batteries. The device also comes with a five-year warranty.
It complies with the British Standard BS7860 and will set off an audible alert for CO concentration levels over and above 45 ppm (parts per million). This is the first danger level set by the Health and Safety Executive. In an eight-hour period it is acceptable to be exposed up to this amount without any harmful effects.
• At 45 ppm the alarm will sound within 60 minutes;
• At 150 ppm it will sound offwithin 10 to 30 minutes;
• At 350 ppm it will sound off within 6 minutes.
The above guidelines/responses are required under BS7860 so to provide a safe response time to a leak of CO.
I won’t scare you with any other figures on this but all you need to know is that this alarm sounds an alert at these min
imum safety levels. The alarm itself is very loud too so not chance of not hearing it go off. Don't stand too close to it when testing it out!
It is fully battery operated, so no untidy wires to the mains (and no chance of electrocuting myself again! Rule number one: don't let me try any DIY). This also means it is much more flexible to be installed in any location of the house. It takes three AA batteries.
It is highly recommended to install it on the first floor of your house (if you have one that is) in the hallway/corridor so that is covers most rooms, and especially the sleeping areas. Make sure you install it close enough to be able to hear the alarm. That shouldn't be too difficult considering how loud it is!
Installing the device is very easy (it must be for me to do it) and will take about thirty minutes to get up and running. It’s similar to a fire alarm in that all you need do is to attach the back plate of the alarm to a wall (drill and then slot on the plate).
Once it’s up on the wall then you chuck in the batteries and wait for about twenty minutes for it to become operational. Then a green light will come on, put the battery cover back on and hey presto your done. This green light should flash now every thirty seconds to tell you it is working properly.
There is a handy test button on the left of the device. Hold it down for a few seconds until it beeps and let go (then run away to somewhere safe for your hearing's sake). In another five to ten seconds it will test the alarm with a loud ringing and flashing red LED on the panel. It is loud enough (as my poor ears will testify) at 85 decibels and should be tested in this way every week.
The alarm can be set off inadvertently by alcohol-based products, paints, hairsprays, aftershaves and perfumes so be a little careful what you use around it.
If you ever have a carbon monoxide alarm g
o off then phone British Gas immediately on the following number and leave the house:
British Gas 0800-111999
This device is an essential purchase if you have gas appliances, particularly a gas boiler, cooker, fire or portable heaters. CO is not detectable by sight or smell (as fire/smoke can be) so having this protection is important in your home. CO is dangerous even in small amounts over a length of time, and can lead to permanent physical damage or even death.
After a number of months I can happily report that it doesn't go off constantly with false alarms as some fire alarms can be prone to do. Just making sure the batteries still have juice by testing it every few weeks for a few seconds is all the maintenance this little baby needs.
Not a light, happy opinion i'm afraid, but an important one that everyone should be fully aware of. GO GET ONE!