CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air

 
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Old 12-30-2006, 06:04 PM   #1
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CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


By name(1 carbon and 1 oxygen) I would suspect that CO is lighter than air meaning that a ceiling mounted carbon monoxide detector would make better sense and that the ones simply plugged in to the wall at 18" aff would be of no use(in that it would be inhaled before being noticed by the detector).

Or do I have it all wrong? Is CO heavier? or does it completely mix in?
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Old 12-30-2006, 06:21 PM   #2
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


At sea level and 20*C...

carbon monoxide is 1.145 g/L
ideal air is 1.2 g/L

Carbon monoxide is slightly lighter than air. The difference is so slight that I expect that natural convection currents keep it pretty well mixed.

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Old 12-30-2006, 06:29 PM   #3
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Originally Posted by mdshunk View Post
At sea level and 20*C...

carbon monoxide is 1.145 g/L
ideal air is 1.2 g/L

Carbon monoxide is slightly lighter than air. The difference is so slight that I expect that natural convection currents keep it pretty well mixed.
Thanks for the research MD, it's very much appreciated

Or did you know all those numbers off the top of your head
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Old 12-30-2006, 06:56 PM   #4
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Thanks for the research MD, it's very much appreciated

Or did you know all those numbers off the top of your head
I Googled it. Took less that 2 minutes. Quit being so lazy!
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Old 12-30-2006, 07:03 PM   #5
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


I have been using the dreaded "I heard from a guy" scientific info on this.
I had always heard that CO was almost neutral so placement of detectors was not critical.
I typically use combo co/smoke detectors where a CO is required.
it's nice to have the facts (looked up for me). Thx Marc.


BTW- Don't you love when folks as about CO2 detectors.
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Old 12-30-2006, 07:15 PM   #6
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
BTW- Don't you love when folks as about CO2 detectors.
Hmmm....what would that be....

place a plant in a central location, if it lives CO2 is present, if it dies it's not(or you didn't water it)
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Old 12-30-2006, 07:16 PM   #7
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


Just a little co info that I have experienced.

If there is co in your garage in the winter and you leave the door into the house open, the co will take a ride on the cold air and go down into the basement rather than go upstairs.

In the 80's, maybe even now, the code called for some direct fresh air from the outside of a dwelling directly into recirculating forced air system. Often these outside air vents, usually 3 or 4 inch, ended up on the driveway or parking lot side of the dwelling/house /apartment.

Long story short. I tracked the high co readings to 7am to 8am. The people were backed up to the fresh air intake when they were warming up their cars for 15 min or so.

Good example of a situation where not following the code might have been better.
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Old 12-30-2006, 07:26 PM   #8
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
BTW- Don't you love when folks as about CO2 detectors.
Yeah, everytime you crack open a Pepsi, the darned things go off!
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Old 12-30-2006, 08:00 PM   #9
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Yeah, everytime you crack open a Pepsi, the darned things go off!
http://www.ilovewavs.com/Effects/Music/RimShot.wav
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Old 12-30-2006, 08:05 PM   #10
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


Here is the install sheet for the Macurco units that I install with alarm panels. Mounting height is listed at 4-5 feet AFF, where people breath.

Attachment 4084

This is line with the specs that MD listed for the weight of CO.

Hope this helps someone.

Les
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Old 12-30-2006, 08:09 PM   #11
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Originally Posted by Sparky Joe View Post
Hmmm....what would that be....

place a plant in a central location, if it lives CO2 is present, if it dies it's not(or you didn't water it)
In fairness, there are CO2 detectors, but they are an HVAC control. They are used in large buildings like supermarkets, retail stores, and theaters. They are used as a predictor of how many people might be occupying the space at the time (more people breathing, more CO2), so that the fresh air dampers can be modulated, and the heat or AC can be predictively brought on early or shut off early so that the setpoint doesn't get overshot due to the increased people load.
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Old 12-31-2006, 08:14 AM   #12
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


Quote:
Originally Posted by K2eoj View Post
Just a little co info that I have experienced.

If there is co in your garage in the winter and you leave the door into the house open, the co will take a ride on the cold air and go down into the basement rather than go upstairs.

In the 80's, maybe even now, the code called for some direct fresh air from the outside of a dwelling directly into recirculating forced air system. Often these outside air vents, usually 3 or 4 inch, ended up on the driveway or parking lot side of the dwelling/house /apartment.

Long story short. I tracked the high co readings to 7am to 8am. The people were backed up to the fresh air intake when they were warming up their cars for 15 min or so.

Good example of a situation where not following the code might have been better.

An interesting side note - The hemoglobin in the bloodstream accepts carbon monoxide 175 to 200 times easier than it does oxygen, which is why humans are so succeptable to CO poisioning in relativly small amounts over longer periods of time (even at COHb levels of 10% or less)
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Old 12-31-2006, 03:19 PM   #13
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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Originally Posted by firemike View Post
An interesting side note - The hemoglobin in the bloodstream accepts carbon monoxide 175 to 200 times easier than it does oxygen, which is why humans are so succeptable to CO poisioning in relativly small amounts over longer periods of time (even at COHb levels of 10% or less)
I got a does of co exposure in high school auto shop. I did not feel it I stood up walked outside hit my head on the window frame and knocked myself out . There is also a Darwinian type of wake surfing on ski boats called "teaking" where a person wears no life vest and they body surf the wake behind the boats swim platform. CO builds up in this spot and they can pass out and drown and or surf under the boat into the prop. Not that this has anything to do with co detectors ,but I thought it might be interesting to hear.
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Old 12-31-2006, 03:46 PM   #14
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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I Googled it. Took less that 2 minutes. Quit being so lazy!
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Old 12-31-2006, 04:13 PM   #15
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


If I weren't so lazy then we wouldn't get the chance to innadvertantly share knowledge in a place where everyone is going to read. Isn't that the whole idea of a forum?

Oh and I have to point out that some of our greatest inventions were due to being lazy, like the wheel, or the remote control
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Old 12-31-2006, 04:17 PM   #16
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


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If I weren't so lazy then we wouldn't get the chance to innadvertantly share knowledge in a place where everyone is going to read. Isn't that the whole idea of a forum?
Yes. Thanks. This forum depends on a certain amount of lazy people, and a certain amount of people to Google an answer for them. Otherwise, it would get boring some days. I certainly don't mind. Just ribbing you a little.
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Old 12-31-2006, 05:57 PM   #17
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Re: CO, Heavier Or Lighter Than Air


I know, I know,

I just like to mess with those who can take it too.

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