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Old 09-29-2013, 12:38 PM   #1
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Carbon Monoxide detector going crazy

My friends have a 1999 National Tradewinds motor home. Recently, the carbon monixide detector keeps going off. We had to cut the wires to disconnect it. When we reconnected the wires, it would be silent for a few minutes; then begin beeping again. Replaced it with a new one and it does the same. It is located close to the floor in the hallway.

A little background: While stored in their driveway, plugged in to a land line, on some mornings when they would go out to the motor home to open it up, the detector would be beeping. While my friend was working in the MH, laying new carpet, no one got sick or died, not even the dog. We took a four day weekend a few weeks ago, with the alarm disconnected, and there was no hint of odor, illness, etc. It was extremely hot here in Texas that weekend and consequently we spent a lot of time in our motor homes with both A/Cs running. We also spent a lot of time with them in their MH and detected no odors, no one even got a headache, runny eyes, etc.

Does anyone have any knowledge of why this would happen? And, yes, he knows he needs to get it fixed because he knows how dangerous it is to not have it working properly.

Thank you for your help.
Happy Trails.
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Old 09-29-2013, 12:51 PM   #2
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Not sure of the timeline from your post.

Did the problem start during the carpet installation or before ?
Fumes from the underlay or new carpet can take months to dissipate.
If you extend the wiring and move the detector higher in the coach , temporarily , does the alarm take longer to activate?
Doing this may help narrow it down to carpet /underlay fumes.

The air flow from the A/Cs may have dissipated/ vented, the fumes, and any situation with movement in the coach, is different than having it sit overnight unoccupied .
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Old 09-29-2013, 01:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragman View Post
My friends have a 1999 National Tradewinds motor home. Recently, the carbon monixide detector keeps going off. We had to cut the wires to disconnect it. When we reconnected the wires, it would be silent for a few minutes; then begin beeping again. Replaced it with a new one and it does the same. It is located close to the floor in the hallway. A little background: While stored in their driveway, plugged in to a land line, on some mornings when they would go out to the motor home to open it up, the detector would be beeping. While my friend was working in the MH, laying new carpet, no one got sick or died, not even the dog. We took a four day weekend a few weeks ago, with the alarm disconnected, and there was no hint of odor, illness, etc. It was extremely hot here in Texas that weekend and consequently we spent a lot of time in our motor homes with both A/Cs running. We also spent a lot of time with them in their MH and detected no odors, no one even got a headache, runny eyes, etc. Does anyone have any knowledge of why this would happen? And, yes, he knows he needs to get it fixed because he knows how dangerous it is to not have it working properly. Thank you for your help. Happy Trails.
Yes, do correct the problem right away. If your sleeping and the problem becomes real you will not wake up to get out.

You said it is close to the floor, if not mistaken the LP gas detector are the ones close to the floor, and the carbon monoxide detector should be located closer to the ceiling (12 - 18") on my coach LP is hard wired, carbon monoxide is battery operated. Yours may be different.

I have 1999 also, first thing I did when I got it was replace both smoke detectors and the carbon monoxide detector. Also added a second carbon monoxide detector up front in the main area. I need to check or replace the LP gas one myself, on my to do list.

Save travels,
Charlie
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Old 09-29-2013, 01:59 PM   #4
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Carbon monoxide poisoning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 09-29-2013, 02:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragman View Post

Recently, the carbon monixide detector keeps going off. We had to cut the wires to disconnect it. When we reconnected the wires, it would be silent for a few minutes; then begin beeping again. Replaced it with a new one and it does the same. It is located close to the floor in the hallway.

Thank you for your help.
Happy Trails.
The CO detector should not be located near the floor. Typically the LPG detector is mounted down there and should be close to the kitchen area. The CO detector should be in the bedroom where people are generally sleeping and mounted under a cabinet or on a wall.

If the old one and the new one are both alerting you to a problem then go find what the problem is and correct it.

Knowing what type of detector it is FIRST will focus your attention to the right areas.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 09-29-2013, 02:16 PM   #6
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The sensors on the CO monitors have a finite life and are to be replace in the 5 to 10 year range. You will need to check the manufactures literature for the recommended life.

If the originals are in your RV, by all means replace them for your safety.

Ken
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Old 09-29-2013, 06:12 PM   #7
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. When we reconnected the wires, it would be silent for a few minutes; then begin beeping again. Replaced it with a new one and it does the same. It is located close to the floor in the hallway.

.
Thought of something else.
Is this a combo CO & LP detector ? You replaced with new, same model?
Another possible test if you want to try. Vent the coach , turn off all propane systems; with the furnace off and the fridge shut down and propane shut off; you eliminate all possible sources for CO and LP to trigger the detector .Then if the detector goes off your back to carpet fumes or CO entering the coach from outside. ( While stored in their driveway )! Had my detector go off from some , J.....ss running stale gas in his Jeep 100' away.
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Old 09-29-2013, 07:10 PM   #8
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mine goes off if the battery's flat.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:42 AM   #9
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Thanks to all for your replies and suggestions. I'll pass this on to my friend.

And my mistake; it is undoubtedly the LP detector, not the CO detector which is in the bedroom. Thanks for setting me straight on that.

HAPPY Trails,
Larry
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:50 PM   #10
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As TX iceman said, the sensing element in either detector has a finite life and needs p4riodic replacement. There are a bunch of reasons why a propane detector will alert, including dog farts, hairspray, butane lighters, etc. While a defective propane alarm likely won't kill you overnight, you better check out all causes before your next trip. You just MIGHT have a small leak somewhere around the stove/oven. PS - that dude who installed the carpet . . . .does he have a gas problem?
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:57 AM   #11
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Check your batteries for a boiling cell. Believe it or not, this will set the propane detector off. This has happen twice on my MH and both times it was a bad battery emitting fumes from a dead cell that was boiling. The fumes get into the MH and set the detector off. Sounds crazy, but it can be a cause.
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Old 10-01-2013, 04:38 AM   #12
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Check your batteries for a boiling cell. Believe it or not, this will set the propane detector off. This has happen twice on my MH and both times it was a bad battery emitting fumes from a dead cell that was boiling. The fumes get into the MH and set the detector off. Sounds crazy, but it can be a cause.
x2, same thing happened to me. my batteries are under my entry stairs, in a supposedly well sealed compartment too.
i installed lifeline agm batteries and that fixed my problem.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:34 AM   #13
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Thanks to all for your replies and suggestions. I'll pass this on to my friend.

And my mistake; it is undoubtedly the LP detector, not the CO detector which is in the bedroom. Thanks for setting me straight on that.

HAPPY Trails,
Larry
Lots of good advice has been given. It is critical to determine if there is a real problem or if they are false alarms.

Definitely have your friend check the water level in his batteries. Overcharging (as indicated by low water level) due to a bad cell can set off an LP alarm.

Also as has been stated, the sensors in all alarms (smoke, CO and LP) have a finite life and need to be periodically replaced. Our LP alarm started going crazy after about 7 years. I turned off the LP, aired out the motor home; and the alarm still kept going off. We replaced the LP alarm and no more problems. We are also on our second smoke alarm and our second CO alarm for the same reason.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:51 AM   #14
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The sensors on the CO monitors have a finite life and are to be replace in the 5 to 10 year range. You will need to check the manufactures literature for the recommended life.

If the originals are in your RV, by all means replace them for your safety.

Ken
X what ever we are up to now.
We (fire company) would recommend every 5 years. I think Safe air gas has one with a 7 year life. (House units)
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