I've Been Poisoned

Some of this pictures may be a little unsettling for some. Just an FYI. 

When I was in Alaska, I got really sick. I don't know what I had but it was unpleasant and embarrassing. I couldn't stop coughing. I felt like an asthma attack or something where I couldn't breathe and my lungs were irritated in a way I have never experienced. I was given some antibiotics by a coworker and it cleared up.

Coming back home, I felt another sickness creep in about a day or two after I arrived. I felt my throat getting annoyed, I was getting stuffy. Coughing and sneezing. Extremely low energy. Sleeping for 10-12 hours a day. It felt just like a cold. Running has been more difficult then I ever expected it to be. The BF and I went to Boise for 2 days last week (we are not staying in Boise but in some small hick town for other reasons...) and the cold cleared up. No coughing. No more sore throat. But coming back to our small little town, it immediately came back.

I've been to this house before in the last year and I have never had such issues. So there has to be something here that wasn't an issue before.

1. I am in a basement room. It's a big 6 bedroom, 3 bathroom old farmhouse with full kitchens upstairs and down. Usually we stay in an upstairs room but felt we needed the dark of one of the basement rooms without as much light.

2. The central air has been running. Since it's a big house, you don't need to run the furnace if all the rooms are not being used. When we were here last in the winter, space heaters did the job of keeping the areas we were using comfortable - and it's cheaper, too!

We start looking around and find that the pipes to the water heater are rotting away.



Look at how bad that looks. The wall behind the water heater is the basement fireplace. The right of the pic is the furnace. The vent pipes connect into the fireplace and vent through that.

The pipe above was really brittle when the boy starts poking at it. He made a hole and found the reason why the pipe was rotting away.

Spam tweets didn't quite reach me. Clogged in the information super highway.

We had birds in the pipes! They had to come in through the chimney. The chimney does have covers but even with 20 pound bricks keeping them in place, the wind still pulls them off. 

50 tweets ended up in the trash. Sorry.

We spent two days cleaning out the pipes and replacing them. We counted about 50 dead birds clogging up the vent to both the furnace and water heater. The picture above shows bird number one that fell out when we pulled the vent plug out of the wall.

Pic from here
While cleaning and repairing the pipes, I started feeling really weak and I just wanted to lay down. I started coughing way more and my throat started to really hurt. I could feel my heart beating funny and I had to go outside and get some air. The BF started feeling nauseous.

Carbon monoxide poisioning symptoms are broad. Depression and fatigue are 2 of the 5 major symptoms that I was dealing with.

The first night after fixing this little issue - the joy's of home ownership - I feel better. I have a little more energy, my mood is improved, and I didn't cough as much. Hopefully my runs will be a little better. I think it was Wiki that said symptoms can last 2-40 days.

Now, I just have to worry about getting West Nile Virus because I have never had as many mosquito bites as I have at this house this summer! 

 Do you have a carbon monoxide detector in your home? Have you ever had CO2 poisoning?

Comments

  1. Yikes! How scary! When I was young and living in my first apt. I had a bird trying to peck through the exhaust screen over the stove. Older homes have lots of issues. We do have a CO detector now.

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    Replies
    1. Ugh, older homes do have quirks, but when it hasn't been taken care of, it's sure a headache.

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