Many of you may be cleaning up from recent hailstorms by fixing your roof and windows, but there’s one item you need to check on to keep your family safe. Make sure to take a close look at the mechanical vents on your roof. This is a good thing for all homeowners to check on because the vents are connected to your gas appliances, like furnaces and water heaters. If the vent is damaged, carbon monoxide could be trapped in your home.
I sat down with the Pikes Peak Regional Building Department to talk about how important it is to make sure your vent is working correctly.
“Our inspectors have been noticing more homes due to the hail, and due to the size of the hail, that their vent caps or their vents themselves are badly damaged, which prevents the gases from properly evacuating the home,” said Rebecca Mulder, communications supervisor for the Regional Building Department.
“It really becomes a sudden silent killer, carbon monoxide,” Mulder said. “You don’t smell it or know that it’s happening, but it can leak into your home and then you can start feeling flu-like symptoms to where you feel like you’re under the weather, but you’re poisoning your body.”
Here’s what you can do: check to see if the vent is broken or damaged, check to see if the cap is crushed down, and make sure the vent is not disconnected from the inside. If it’s damaged, have a contractor repair it.
Another thing to watch for right now is scammers.
“I would say the door-to-door salesmen come Monday through Sunday, and our website is a great resource to look up that contractor right on the spot, while they’re at your door to find out if they are licensed and have the proper license and insurance to do it right,” Mulder said. “Without that, they are not legally allowed to work in our jurisdiction.”
Don’t sign paperwork without checking to make sure they are a legitimate company. You can call the Regional Building Department at 719-327-2880 or visit their website at www.pprbd.org.
I also wanted to give you a quick warning about another scam. One of our former 11 Call for Action volunteers called me because she got a call from scammers claiming to work for FedEx. You may have seen this story on KKTV 11 News. The caller asked Margaret for personal information, like her address. “I knew that something was wrong,” Margaret told me. She hung up and called FedEx directly to see if they needed anything. They told her it was a scam.
Keep in mind, con artists can spoof their phone numbers to make it look like they are calling from any number. If you get a call like that, hang up, and reach out to the legitimate company using a trusted number to ask if they are trying to get a hold of you.