Get Knowledgable about Indoor Gases Carbon Monoxide (CO) — Carbon monoxide is a dangerous, life-threatening gas that may be fatal, and can result in flu-like symptoms over time. You can read more about this gas on our Carbon Monoxide page. Natural Gas — Natural gas is normally safe, but it can potentially create a threat if a pilot light is out in a stove, a gas fireplace, or a furnace, or if there is a leak. Thankfully, natural gas can be detected due to its strong odor, making it easier to detect. The gas itself is not poisonous. The problem is that it is heavier than oxygen, and displaces the oxygen we breathe, leading to asphyxiation. It can also accumulate in the basement, and—under the right circumstances—explode. No. Not good. Go purchase a natural gas detector. They’re affordable and easy to operate. If you smell gas, don’t turn lights or appliances on or off, as even a small electrical current could ignite an explosion. Leave the area immediately and call your Columbia natural gas utility. Radon — Radon is a colorless and odorless gas that is strictly detected by testing. This radioactive gas comes from the natural breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water. It’s found in the majority of North America, though some areas have much higher concentrations. Unmitigated radon may cause cancer, and is responsible for 21,000 lung cancer deaths annually. A simple do-it-yourself air test can determine your radon level. If levels exceed the recommendations, a radon reduction contractor can assist with a solution. Other Gases and Vapors — Other gases and vapors are released from vehicles in the garage, from tobacco use, from cleaning products, and the more than 300 chemicals used in household furnishings, construction materials, carpeting, flooring, and paints. All these gases may produce odors and gasses that can irritate our respiratory systems, and could aggravate asthma and allergies. Tips — Here are some recommendations to help control exposure to gasses, fumes and odors: Be sure your home has proper ventilation. Call us for a free ventilation system analysis. Install a carbon monoxide detector, a natural gas detector, and be sure to test the radon levels in your home. Keep interior doors closed that are near the garage, and leave the garage door open at least 5 minutes after a car enters or leaves. If you have a wood-burning stove or fireplace, extinguish all burning embers before shutting the flue. Leave the door open to any room that does not have a return vent. Reduce the amount of tobacco smoke in the home. Use non-toxic or organic cleaning products. Call Midland Air Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in Columbia at 803-399-7208 for a Home Health Report to learn about how we can help protect you and have the highest indoor air quality possible. We offer quality equipment choices, knowledge and expert service—for all makes and models, 24 hours a day.