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120V Propane Alarms and CO Alarms Protect Park Model Trailers with Gas Appliances

by Barbara 12. April 2011 10:54

Question about the Safety Siren Propane and Natural Gas Alarm

Q: "We live in a park model modular home in a retirement community in northern Florida.  It is a one bedroom unit. Our furnace, our hot water heater and our range are all propane. A central tank supplies several homes. We've read that trailers and motor homes have 12 volt propane alarms and 12 volt carbon monoxide alarms hard-wired into the 12 volt system. Ours is 120Volt. The outlets are near the appliances and near the floor. The water heater is in a closet as is the furnace. What do we need to protect ourselves from a fire or explosion? Thanks. Tim and Diane."

Answer: In your situation, you need a minimum of two carbon monoxide alarms, one inside your bedroom and one in the living area at the other end. You need 3 propane gas alarms. Each one of your gas appliances needs a combustible gas alarm installed near to it. This means inside the closets where the furnace and the water heater reside. We understand from a park home model reseller that at least the newer models do have outlets near the appliances and near the floor.

Our suggestion is that you install two of the RV carbon monoxide units, the CoStar 9V Battery UL Home and RV Carbon Monoxide Alarm. This is because these units can handle both high humidity and high temperatures without sensors being destroyed. Operating Environment:-40 degrees F to +151 degrees F 15% to 95% RH. Since they are battery powered, you don't have to worry about plugging them into those very scarce outlets. Just change the battery out once a year.

As far as the propane alarms are concerned, we recommend that you use direct plug in units only if you have outlets close to the appliance and low to the floor. Propane is heavier than air so it sinks and pools around the bottom of an appliance. Otherwise, we recommend that you install the Safe-T-Alert Propane Natural Gas Alarm, 120V because it has a 65 inch cord that allows proper placement probably 99% of the time. This unit has micro current technology which means it uses only 3.8 watts of energy, which is about US $3.00 per year to operate. Since propane gas is heavier than air, mount this gas alarm within 4 to 20 inches of the floor. For methane or natural gas which is lighter than room air, mount the detector within 6 inches from the ceiling or on the ceiling at least 12 inches from a wall.

Thank you for your question. Remember that carbon monoxide is a by product of incomplete combustion of fossil fuels like propane, natural gas, wood, etc. Raw propane or natural gas detectors won't detect carbon monoxide nor will carbon monoxide sensors detect raw leaking gas. We do sell a combination plug in unit as well. Proper placement for carbon monoxide detector alarms is different from combustible gas alarms.  For example, gas-burning appliances may emit it a small amount of carbon monoxide when starting up. So this carbon monoxide alarm should be placed 15 feet or more from heating or cooking appliances and never hear a very humid room such as a bathroom.

Sincerely, Barbara