Everyone knows by now that it's very important to have a smoke detector. While we can obviously see and smell fire, that little extra help can save lives. Just ask anyone (like me) who has lived and walked away from a fire, thanks to an alarm.

Fireman extinguishes a fire in an old wooden house

But a smoke detector isn't the only alarm you should have installed in your home. In fact, experts in Michigan are worried about how many families aren't protected from this silent but deadly killer. And all it takes is one device to save you and your family's life.

What life-saving device should more Michigan homes have installed?

If you don't have one, you should consider installing a carbon monoxide (or CO2) detector.

According to sources, only 14 percent of Michigan homes currently have a carbon monoxide detector installed. And while it may not seem that common of a problem- lots of people are caught off guard (and sometimes killed) by this silent and scentless gas.

In fact, according to the National Fire Incident Reporting System, Michigan fire departments responded to at least 9,774 carbon monoxide calls in 2022... imagine how many of these calls could have been prevented.

But it's such an easy problem to solve- most detectors cost anywhere from $20 - $70, but for those who can't afford it, many Michigan fire departments have them available for free thanks to a partnership with the state.

How can I tell if my home has a Carbon Monoxide problem?

Unlike natural gas which has an additive that will make it smell like rotten eggs, carbon monoxide is a little more sneaky.


Here are a few steps to help you tell until you get a detector installed.

  • If you see brown or yellowish stains around appliances.
  • If you have a pilot light that frequently goes out.
  • Check your burner flame, if it appears yellow instead of clear blue (exception: natural gas fireplaces)
  • If you're getting no upward draft in a chimney flue.
  • Or if you smell stale-smelling air.

While it's hard to tell for sure before it's too late- protect yourself. A small investment could save your life.

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