Roof Replacements and Carbon Monoxide

As a result of the July 20 hail storm, more than 10,000 roofing permits have been issued in the City of Arvada. When a roof is replaced, the vents for furnaces, fireplaces, and water heaters may need repair as a result of hail damage and in some cases may be inadvertently damaged during the re-roofing process. If a flu is damaged, restricted, or disconnected, odorless carbon monoxide gas that is normally vented to the outside of the home can accumulate inside your home, putting you and your family at risk.

Although roofs must be inspected after replacement, and inspectors look for venting problems, it is sometimes difficult for them to catch damaged vents when the problem is within the home or attic.  Furthermore, due to the thousands of roof replacments, inspectors have a backlog of several weeks.

If you have had a roof recently replaced we strongly encourage you to install a carbon monoxide detector. This should give you early warning if something is wrong with the venting system. If the detector alerts you to the build up of carbon monoxide, you should open windows and immediately call Xcel Energy or the Arvada Fire Protection District.

In lieu of, or addition to the recommendations above, you might also consider hiring a licensed mechanical contractor to come to your home and inspect the venting to make sure that you are not in any danger.

In July of 2009 the State of Colorado passed a law that required carbon monoxide detectors in single family homes when they are sold or when a gas appliance is added. The 2009 edition of International Building Codes that will be adopted soon will also require CO detectors in certain circumstances. Like smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors are now considered to be very important in providing another level of life safety. Over the years they have become smaller, more accurate, and affordable.

If you have further questions, please call the City's building inspection division at 720-898-7610.