Carbon monoxide Test Done on Kero-Sun Heaters : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Last night we fired up our Kero-Sun Radiant 10 heater in a 12 x 12 foot vaulted ceiling room. My husband has a carbon monoxide tester and tested the heater for carbon monoxide. It tested at 45 ppm, which was in the safe range. However, crack a window or door to allow some fresh air to come in. The heater kept the room toasty warm. If you have one of these heaters, better snag some extra wicks.

-- Bardou (, January 29, 1999


Right On!

We tested one of ours two weeks ago - in the garage (Iowa weather @ about 10F). You know, just to be safe! My God, don't start in the house!

It's your typical double car thing - insulated but with the usual air leaks. It ran for about one hour and the temp went from 60 degrees to over 70 degrees in that short time. (We have a Reznor gas heater, so we didn't start from scratch, but the Reznor was shut off.)

My wife was very concerned by the carbon monoxide potential. NO PROBLEM!

How warm and quiet it ran. I think the specs say it is rated at 23,000 BTU. Very little odor after the burn-in. The three we bought are rebuilts at an average cost of 90 bucks each.


-- Bob Walton (, January 29, 1999.

Funny. There are probably so many agri-guys (farmers) out there in cyberspace who are laughing their butts off at us town folks. They have lived with these heaters growing up on the farm, and personally in my business, I have talked with several of them. They have no fear of them. They were raised with kerosene heaters.


-- Bob Walton (, January 29, 1999.

My Perfection 500 is just fine thankyou. Runs for longer, on less fuel, and does about the same job as the Kerosun 10 I have. My neighborhood true Value guy said he doesn't carry the Perfection wicks as "they aren't suitable for indoor use due to monoxide." When I told him I had been using it for about 3 months inside (cellar) with a detector 4 feet away and another at the top of the stairs without problems, he looked at me as if I had grown a third arm, between my eyes. Couldn't believe that the perfection wasn't as good as the "new technology" of the Kerosun. He said I'd probably have to go out to Middlefield (Amish country) cause they were the only people HE knew of who were using them........

Gimme a break! NEW TECHNOLOGY!?!?!?!?!?! They both burn kero. They both use a cylindrical wick. Next???


-- Chuck, night driver (, January 29, 1999.

We tested ours, loved it, and now we're using it! We keep it in our "solarium" which gets quite cool at times due to all the windows. Whenever it gets down to freezing (hasn't been too often - we're in TX) we turn it on and the solarium becomes the coziest room in the house.

We found a carbon monoxide detector that runs on elec. with a battery back-up. So far it has registered "0" while using the heater, but of course we haven't been closing off this room as we would during a power failure.

-- LM (, January 29, 1999.

The only thing I don't like about the heater is the smell of the kerosene at first lighting. I light it outside first and then back to where I want it after the fumes burn off. I have two of these heaters which I bought at a yard sale a couple years back for $15.00 each and use them in my garage. They'll work just fine for what I need them for, but I was more concerned about the carbon monoxide.

-- bardou (, January 29, 1999.

Ok boys and girls. A quick science lesson on indoor combustion.

Fuel + heat + O2 = fire + more heat + CO2

The carbon comes from the fuel the oxygen from the room.

If the O2 level in the room gets too low then

Fuel + heat + 1/2O2 = fire + more heat + CO

Voila Carbon monoxide!

If you seal the room too tight you will get CO no matter whose magic heater you use. All those farmers get away with it because they have lived in old, or cheap houses that leak air like a sieve!

Get a CO detector. One of the ones with a LED readout is best. The Nighthawk is one of the better. Use it. If it reads more than 10-20 open a window or door a little.


-- LM (, January 30, 1999.

Speaking about heaters I am planning on getting one of those heaters that operate off a barbeque gas tank. I plan on storing about 10 tanks and should be fine for a while. Has anyone heard on how the heater works and the saftey of them? I am wondering about the carbon monoxide variable with that type og heat. Any input would be appreciated. Thanks!

-- Duane (, January 30, 1999.

See comments above from LM, same chemistry applies. Very little CO as long as O2 levels remain high. CO2 can also smother you though.

-- Robert A. Cook, PE (Kennesaw, GA) (, January 30, 1999.

One of the challenges of making a post (that could potentially be very long) is to try and be consise, considering the many posts we now read and answer. Unfortunately, much useful information may get left out.

In that regard:

YES! Buy a couple of CO detectors and make certain the batteries are up. If the power is off, the AC-only detector will not work unless you provide backup AC power. Obvious, right?

YES! You must provide some fresh combustion air, or the above formula will generate CO. As to another cause of generating CO: Keep the wick at the proper height. The newer units do not allow a big range adjustment. i.e. They try to prevent it from going too low.

YES! Follow the safety instructions provided with the unit. This includes NOT FUELING WHILE RUNNING, possible upset by a child or dog and testing the upset interrupt device internal to most of them. Just because it's running fine one minute doesn't mean it will continue that way. Although, most comment they simply have had little or no adjustment problems, etc.

YES! Have a fire extinguisher close at hand.

So many of us are using, and will use, these units that much comment could save lives.


-- Bob Walton (, January 31, 1999.

I picked up one of those propane heaters (not the small round thing but a unit designed to be mounted on the wall or optionally with a floor stand). This is 25,000 BTUs and is of the infared variety (heats objects, not the air). It was $169 at Home Depot and with the couple of 100lb. cylinders I have plus a few 20lb ones, I am hoping to keep me and mine confortable if the power should go. This item is meant for indoor ventless heating, but I agree that you would need to crack a couple windows for fresh O2 intake and CO2 exhaust just to be on the safe side..

-- Lurker (, February 02, 1999.

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