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Consumer Reports tests CO alarms that could put your family at risk

Alarms sold on eBay, Amazon failed critical performance tests

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Consumer Reports warns about carbon monoxide alarms that could put your family at risk.

In Consumer Reports’ most recent tests of carbon monoxide alarms, three similar-looking off-brand alarms -- the Foho YJ-806, the GoChange 882 LCD and the NetBoat WB_H3110061, all sold on Amazon and eBay -- failed critical performance tests and have been labeled "Don’t Buy: Safety Risk."

CO alarms are designed to sound before the level of carbon monoxide in a person's bloodstream would reach a dangerous level.

“We test each carbon monoxide alarm at two CO levels," Consumer Reports engineer Bernie Deitrick said. "First, we test at 100 parts per million, where the alarm should sound after about 40 minutes. Then we test at 400 parts per million, when the alarm should sound between four and 15 minutes.”

All three alarms failed some aspect of Consumer Reports testing -- either for going off too quickly or not at all.

Also important, the three failed alarms do not have a UL certification, a mark given to all CO alarms that meet a voluntary industry safety standard.

Anyone who already owns one of the Foho, GoChange, or NetBoat carbon monoxide alarms, are advised to stop using them, and replace them with one of the recommended CO alarms that do meet the UL certifications, such as the top-rated First Alert CO615, a standalone alarm, or the First Alert OneLink SCO501CN, an interconnected alarm that syncs with multiple alarms in your home.

After being contacted by Consumer Reports, Amazon said the two products that failed the tests were no longer available for sale, and that it had also removed similar-looking models CR pointed out that did not list a UL certification.

Amazon also said it would work with consumers who may have purchased the alarms under the terms of its return policy.

EBay responded that based on CR’s report, it had removed the specific carbon monoxide alarm listing from the seller and requested the seller contact any buyers who may have purchased these alarms.

Consumer Reports said it is unaware of any injuries related to the products.


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