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Health Tip: Carbon Monoxide

A deadly gas that you can't see, smell or taste

(HealthDayNews) -- As the temperatures dip and the use of furnaces and space heaters rises, so does the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Carbon monoxide is an odorless and colorless gas. If it builds up in your home, it can cause serious illness and death. More than 500 Americans are killed by carbon monoxide poisoning every year, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Any motor vehicle or fuel-burning heater -- such as your furnace, gas water heater, or portable butane or gas heater -- can emit carbon monoxide and should be inspected every year. Install a carbon monoxide detector in your home, and check its battery every time you check your smoke-detector batteries.

Never burn anything in a stove or fireplace that isn't vented properly, never heat your house with a gas oven, and never run a generator in an enclosed space. Also, don't ever warm up your car in a closed garage.

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