choosing a carbon monoxide detector - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 3 Old 09-22-2010 Thread Starter
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choosing a carbon monoxide detector

My insurance company gave me a list of things I need to fix on my new-to-me boat, one of which is the installation of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. I found a smoke detector on Defender, about $12, no big deal. Then I went looking for CO detectors... over a hundred dollars?? I can get one at home depot for about $20. I ended up ordering this one on the assumption that "marine grade" is worth the money (and the insurance requires marine grade), but upon some further research I've seen some bad reviews of that model on the West Marine website. Does anyone have a lower cost, better product they recommend? I'd prefer something battery powered, but that isn't a requirement.

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post #2 of 3 Old 09-22-2010
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"Listed to UL 2034 rigid marine standards."
I suspect that's what you are paying for. Submitting something to UL can cost the maker $50,000 and that raises the unit costs. But this UL standard is easily found online and apparently there is nothing "marine" about it, it covers home and boats alike. So I'd expect that ANY UL-listed CO detector from the hardware store would be just as good for use on a boat.
WRT the cheap smoke detectors--I've had the pleasure of seeinf firemen outside my door and smoke on my ceilings while all the damned smoke detectors DID NOT SOUND OFF. Apparently the cheap ionization types are relatively insensitive, and if your goal is safety, not just meeting rules, then you really want a 'dual' mode type that is photosensitive and ionization detectors built in one. About $30+, but much better protection.
What that says about cheap monoxide detectors....well, I live someplace where code requires one. And I believe in them. But since I always keep a window open, and there are no combustion sources, no fireplace, no gas burners, no adjacent flue vents, chimneys or gensets...I pulled the batteries out of that because I will never need it, and don't want to be awakened in the night when they need changing.

Next they'll require me to buy flood insurance....despite the fact that I'm on top of a hill and far enough above sea level that even a tsunami couldn't flood me out.
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post #3 of 3 Old 09-22-2010 Thread Starter
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hellosailor, thank you very much for doing that bit of digging. I checked a couple CO detectors at Home Depot and found one listed to that same standard. It's a better model (more features), and it's only $27. I'll be returning the other one to Defender. Thanks for saving me about $80!

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