Cindy Littrell
Cindy Littrell

Articles > California's Carbon Monoxide Detector Law

California's Carbon Monoxide Detector Law Effective July 1, 2011

Since 2011, all single-family homes in California with a fireplace, gas- or oil-burning appliance, or attached garage were required to have carbon monoxide alarms/detectors installed.

The California Legislature successfully enacted into law Senate Bill 183, which aimed to reduce the amount of deaths from carbon monoxide poisoning. It is estimated that up to 30-40 Californians die from carbon monoxide poisoning each year, which is now being referred to as the silent killer.

The detectors are the best way to protect families from carbon monoxide poisoning, which is a colorless, odorless gas. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are often mistakenly diagnosed as the flu.

It was estimated that nearly 90% of homes in California did not have these detectors. While CO detectors can alert home occupants of a carbon monoxide leak, home owners should make sure that appliances that emit carbon monoxide, such as such as gas burning furnaces, stoves and water heaters, are working properly.

California also made CO detectors a requirement for those applying for building and remodeling permits, as well as homes and properties involved in new rental or sales agreements.

Homeowners who failed to install the devices by July 1, 2011 could have received a maximum fine of $200 for each offense. The carbon-monoxide detectors/alarms must carry the state fire marshal’s seal of approval. A similar law went into effect for condominiums and town homes in 2013.

You can find a Carbon Monoxide Detector for approximately $30-$45 at your local home improvement store such as The Home Depot or Lowe’s.

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