Carbon-monoxide-detectors save lives. Carbon-monoxide is a colorless odorless gas emitted from gas-powered appliances including clothes dryers, heating systems or portable heaters. carbon-monoxide can also be generated and enter the house from a car idling in the garage or a clog in a chimney. Many homeowners install battery-powered carbon-monoxide sensors, but they are only as good as the batteries and if you remember to change the batteries. A hardwired carbon-monoxide sensor adds a measure of safety in a home. While wiring may not be your specialty, replacing a device is fairly easy. This covers hardwiring a carbon-monoxide detector is areas where you have available wiring and a pre-existing carbon-monoxide detector.

Turn off the power to the room from the electrical box. Never work with or install electrical items with the power connected. You can kill yourself or at the very least give yourself a shock that can send you to the hospital.

Use a screwdriver to loosen and remove screws from the carbon-monoxide sensor. Remove the old mounting-plate. Generally, even if you choose the same brand, new models will have different mounting-plates that will not fit an old sensor.

Install a new mounting-plate. The mounting-plate comes with the new CO sensor. Follow the manufacturer's directions for installing the mounting-plate, usually they are screwed into the ceiling or wall.

Plug the power supply, hanging from the ceiling or wall, into the back of the carbon-monoxide sensor.

Insert screws into the predrilled holes and tighten them to secure the CO sensor to the mounting-plate.

Restore the power from the main box.


Check the manufacturer's directions prior to attempting installation.

Install Carbon-monoxide-detectors on each floor of the house making sure they are installed outside of bedrooms, near furnaces, gas clothes dryers and near fireplaces.

Check your local laws, building codes and occupancy ordinances for the type and placement of CO detectors.

Choose a carbon-monoxide detector with a battery back-up.

Replace Carbon-monoxide-detectors according to the directions supplied by the manufacturer. The chemical inside a detector diminishes over time and has to be replaced.

Not comfortable with electricity, hire someone or rely on battery-powered only CO detectors.

Carbon-monoxide-detectors are also available as the type that plugs into a standard electrical outlet which may be your best bet if you need to add more CO detectors to your home.

 Note the date of installation on the mounting-plate or back of the carbon-monoxide detector so you will know where it needs replacement.