Saved some lives in a 6 flat

I was at a commercial inspection last week and within ten minutes of being inside the building getting my self acquainted with the layout I just started feeling bad. I had a headache and was feeling queasy, didn’t think much about it until I reached the room with the boiler and 7 WH’s and was overcome by a smell of bad combustion and the smell of strong gas leaks. I decided to go ahead and start off by running a co check and checking for gas leaks. The boiler was at a standstill and only running on a pilot and putting off about 50-60 PPM of CO. I went to the first unit and turned up the thermostat to bet the boiler to kick on and within 3 min the CO Reading went from 55 PPM to 1900 PPM! Oh man what a way to start off on an inspection. I told the client that I need to call the gas company to get them out here and confirm my findings. After convincing the very lazy gas man that there is indeed a major problem he finally pulled out his sniffer and found that the numbers were rising to about 2,200 PPM. Needless to say he shut off the unit and red-tagged it. After visiting with the tenants in there units I found that all of them had been very sick all winter with headaches and flue type symptoms. Hmmm wonder what was going on there. Not only were they in danger of CO poisoning but every 60 amp panel in each unit was so over fused it wasn’t even funny. I found most had 30-35 amp fuses on 14 AWG wiring. WOW! I can’t believe this building is still standing. And not one working smoke alarm in the entire building. Needless to say once the tenants found out I was not from the city they just opened up like a book and told my client and I everything about the building. I think I could have done the inspection by just talking to the tenants.

Good job. What city Mark?

Good job Mark. It’s stories like that that shoulb be more widely covered. Show the public what good you can do for them . Nice job!!!:stuck_out_tongue: :stuck_out_tongue: :stuck_out_tongue:

Way to go!!!

– bz

For you and anyone else who does inspections like this one that puts you in a home or room full of fossil fuel appliances, I would recommend you buy yourself a CO alarm that you can clip or pin on yourself. You could have just as easily been overcome while in there and not been found until much later. The alarms are not that expensive anymore and well worth whatever it costs. I have one and it has gone off a couple of times and later turned out to be good thing it did. It allows me to monitor the site without breaking out the CO tester until it goes off, then it verifies the presence of CO. The one I have has different modules that can be changed out for various gases. Good job BTW!

That is a great idea Doug!

Link for the alarm?:wink:

Hi Mark,
That must give you a very warm feeling knowing you saved all those people’s lives.
Well done sir!!!


This isn’t the one I use but it is an affordable unit Ive seen adverstised in several places.

The one I use is a Scott-Bacharack Mini -SA

This isn’t the one I use but it is an affordable unit Ive seen adverstised in several places.

The one I use is a Scott-Bacharack Mini -SA



Real nice Mark;

Good work.

Marcel :slight_smile: :smiley:


Thanks for all the nice comments everyone.
The clip on alarm sounds great now! I really just thought that I was coming down with something. But after talking with the first two Tennant’s on the basement level I knew something just wasn’t right.

I got a call from my client today. There was a new boiler installed that evening and that the city guys were out there because they had just inspected the property 2 weeks ago and for some reason missed all the bad panels, water heaters, and the killer boiler.:roll:

Great job Mark! It’s a good feeling to help others.

Great idea Doug. Might have saved someone from a real bad headache or worse. Thanks for the links to you and Micheal.

Yur Welcome. Anything to keep people safe while trying to earn a living. My take and tell this to people all the time when they want to know why I do not take unnecessary risks; If I can’t work due to an injury or sickness I can’t make any money. People will often wonder why a HI won’t walk a dangerous roof, crawl through a swamp for a crawl space or open a panel that has obviously been smoke checked or is buzzing. Ive even had to slap people’s hands away from dangerous items to keep them from making the Darwin awards list.