Mar 29

A reader of the ApartmentAssoc Yahoo Group asks:

Am I correct when I say a 2 story 4 unit building w/ a basement would need 7 co detectors installed.  Can they be combo smoke/co detectors or do we need separate detectors for each function?  Any help would be appreciated…..Thanks

My reply cleaned up a bit from the original is below As of April 1st, 2010 Wisconsin began requiring CO detectors in all multifamily buildings. As of February 1st, 2011 the requirement expanded to all residential buildings including owner occupied single families.  There are a few exceptions such as units that have electric heat AND do not have attached garages AND do not have gas stoves; as well as those with sealed combustion furnaces and water heaters that are inspected regularly.But most WI residential buildings now must have carbon monoxide detectors.

Where to install and how many carbon monoxide detectors are required depends on a number of factors. Continue reading »

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Jan 29

With very few exceptions, all single family and duplexes in Wisconsin will be required to have carbon monoxide detectors installed as of February 1st 2011. You can read about the multi unit building version of the CO detector law here

The important part of the law for most of us is:

“101.647(3)(a) The owner of a dwelling shall install a functional carbon monoxide detector in the basement of the dwelling and on each floor level except the attic, garage, or storage area of each dwelling unit. A carbon monoxide detector wired to the dwelling’s electrical wiring system shall have a backup battery power supply. Except as provided under par. (b), the occupant of the dwelling unit shall maintain any carbon monoxide detector in that unit. This paragraph does not apply to the owner of a dwelling that has no attached garage, no fireplace, and no fuel-burning appliance.”

“(b) If any occupant who is not the owner of a dwelling, or any person authorized by state law or by city, village, town, or county ordinance or resolution to exercise powers or duties involving inspection of real or personal property, gives written notice to the owner that the carbon monoxide detector is not functional, the owner shall provide, within 5 days after receipt of that notice, any maintenance necessary to make that carbon monoxide detector functional.”

While the law does not contain a penalty for not complying, failing to have a working CO detector may result in additional liability should a problem occur at your property.. The law was passed and signed into law last year.

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Mar 09

As of April 1st all  three families and larger buildings in Wisconsin  that have  attached garages or “fuel burning devices” –gas heat, oil heat, gas dryers, gas stoves etc. will be required to have CO detectors.  A similar law just passed the legislature for ALL one and two family buildings including owner occupied, effective February 2011.

And you will need a lot of them

CO detectors must be within 75 feet of all fuel burning device and within 15′ of each bedroom. One is required in the basement if there is a “fuel burning device” down there.  They are also  required in common hallways spaced no more than 75′.  So a 149′ hall could get away with one, just as a 6 foot hall would need one.

There is an exemption if there are no attached garages and the only “fuel burning device” is a sealed combustion chamber unit, i.e. 90+ furnace or high efficiency water heater, that is under warranty or inspected annually.

Battery and plug in units are okay.  Mount them on the ceiling or wall.

Laws such as this and lead paint are never reversed so preparation is the order of the day.

This is an area that we should collectively work on pricing.  I’ve gotten them down to the mid thirteen dollar range for my volume.

Reference resources for Wisconsin’s CO detector Law:

Wisconsin Department Of Commerce CO detector Pamphlet

Installation Requirements For Carbon Monoxide Detectors as outlined in 2007 Wisconsin Act 205

2) INSTALLATION REQUIREMENTS. (a) Except as provided in par. (b), the owner of a residential building shall install a carbon monoxide detector in all of the following places not later than the date specified under par. (c):

1. In the basement of the building if the basement has a fuel-burning appliance.

2. Within 15 feet of each sleeping area of a unit that has a fuel-burning appliance.

3. Within 15 feet of each sleeping area of a unit that is immediately adjacent to a unit that has a fuelburning appliance.

4. In each room that has a fuel-burning appliance and that is not used as a sleeping area. A carbon monoxide detector shall be installed under this subdivision not more than 75 feet from the fuelburning appliance.

5. In each hallway leading from a unit that has a fuel-burning appliance, in a location that is within 75 feet from the unit, except that, if there is no electrical outlet within this distance, the owner shall place the carbon monoxide detector at the closest available electrical outlet in the hallway.

(b) If a unit is not part of a multiunit building, the owner of the residential building need not install more than one carbon monoxide detector in the unit.

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