Why is Carbon Monoxide Alarm Going Off in Camper

It has become very common to install carbon monoxide detectors in the home, which greatly reduces the probability of carbon monoxide poisoning. Now, carbon monoxide detectors are used in many scenarios, of which the second most widely used is RVs.


Why is carbon monoxide dangerous in an RV and what are the consequences


Imagine that when carbon monoxide is produced in an RV, the carbon monoxide rapidly accumulates in a small space, and the concentration continues to increase. People are driving without knowing that carbon monoxide is inhaled into the body. Gradually, as the concentration of carbon monoxide in the body increases, people start to get dizzy, have difficulty breathing, and even sleep while driving. This is a very dangerous thing, and it is very easy to cause a car accident due to uncontrolled cars.


Incidentally, the small RV space greatly shortens the time for carbon monoxide concentrations to accumulate, and the time for people to contract the following symptoms is also greatly shortened:


  • Dizziness
  • headache
  • Vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Confusion


CO poisoning - Brojensmarthome


For example, a carbon monoxide concentration of 50ppm at home will make people dizzy after 1 hour, but the same concentration in an RV will make people dizzy in half an hour.


The main causes of carbon monoxide in RVs


The RV is equivalent to a mobile home, and the combustion equipment and generators inside it can produce carbon monoxide during operation. The specific equipment is as follows:


  • Built-in generator
  • Portable generator
  • Gas heater
  • Gas stove or oven
  • Gas water heater
  • Portable camping stove


What to do when a carbon monoxide detector goes off


People should remain calm when they hear an alarm from a carbon monoxide detector. First, the windows and sunroof need to be opened, and the air outside the car will dilute the concentration of carbon monoxide in the RV. Secondly, the driver needs to find a nearby parking spot, stop the car, turn off the engine, and get off with the passengers in the car, keeping the windows open during the period. Finally, call the police and wait for the arrival of professionals. During this period, please do not get in the car to prevent carbon monoxide from remaining in the car.


Where to Install a Carbon Monoxide Detector in an RV


Carbon monoxide detectors need to be installed in a central location 5 feet from the floor. Because carbon monoxide is lighter than air, it will float upward when the indoor temperature is warm, and the smoke will also float upward. In addition, the RV space is relatively small, so the installation position of the detector should be as far away from the ground as possible.


Where to install CO Alarm in RVs - Brojensmarthome


How to Install a Carbon Monoxide Detector


The method of installing the detector depends on the type of detector. Common types of RV detectors are mainly wall mounted detectors (also known as 12 volt RV detectors) and battery powered detectors.


Wall-mounted detectors are usually mounted on the wall, have hidden wiring, and need to be powered on in the RV when in use, which can be achieved by paralleling multiple generators. The installation steps are as follows:


1.Unpack the new detector and cut the wires

Pay attention to the live and ground wires during installation. The live wire is red and the ground wire is black, if your RV wiring has a white ground wire then you will need to connect the black wire from the new unit to the white wire in the RV detector compartment.

Use wire cutters to cut the wires in the new unit to the desired length, so that the wires do not overlap with the rest of the RV and take up space.


Install wired CO Alarm - Brojensmarthome


2.Turn on the power

After connecting the ground and fire wires as described above, turn on the power to start the device. If activated normally, the detector will flash red continuously for three minutes, then the indicator will turn green, which means the detector is ready to detect the relevant gas in the RV.


3.Screw in place after the test is complete

If the device has been tested without problems, it can be screwed into the wall


Battery powered detectors:


The installation of this kind of detector is very easy. The device can be installed in any position of the RV without wiring. It only needs to be nailed to the wall with screws. The service life is generally 7~10 years. During this period, the device can not be replaced.

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