First Alert CO5120BN User Manual

First Alert Conditioners

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Thank you for choosing BRK Brands, Inc. for your Carbon Monoxide Alarm
needs. You have purchased a state-of-the-art Carbon Monoxide Alarm
designed to provide you with early warning of carbon monoxide.
Key features include:

Most Accurate Carbon Monoxide Sensor*
Advanced electrochemical CO sensor technology.

Intelligent Sensing Technology is designed to help reduce unwanted or
nuisance alarms.

Two Silence Features. Temporarily silence low battery chirp for up to eight
hours before replacing low battery or silence an unwanted alarm for several

Two Latching Features. Alarm Latch: Easily identifies initiating alarm even
after alarm condition has subsided. Low Battery Latch: Identifies which unit
is in low battery condition.

Smart Interconnect interconnects with most First Alert


and BRK branded

smoke, CO and heat alarms. When interconnected with alarming smoke
alarms, unit will sound smoke horn pattern.

Dust Cover is included to keep the alarm clean during construction.

Easy Installation/Maintenance features include a large opening in the
mounting bracket for easy access to wiring. A battery pull tab keeps the
battery fresh until the home is occupied. A Side Load Battery Drawer allows for
easy battery replacement without removing the alarm from the ceiling or wall.

© 2008 BRK Brands, Inc., a Jarden Corporation company (NYSE: JAH)
3901 Liberty Street Road, Aurora, IL 60504-8122
All rights reserved.
Consumer Affairs: (800) 323-9005 •


• Dangers, Warnings, and Cautions alert you to important

operating instructions or to potentially hazardous situations.
Pay special attention to these items.

• THIS IS NOT A SMOKE ALARM! This CO Alarm is designed to

detect carbon monoxide from ANY source of combustion. It is
NOT designed to detect smoke, fire, or any other gas.

• This CO Alarm is approved for use in single-family residences.

It is NOT designed for marine or RV use.

• This CO Alarm will only indicate the presence of carbon monoxide gas

at the sensor. Carbon monoxide gas may be present in other areas.

• This unit does not work without power. If the AC power fails, the

battery back-up will power the alarm for at least 7 days provided
the 9V battery is fresh and correctly installed.

• The Silence Feature is for your convenience only and will not correct

a CO problem. Always check your home for a potential problem
after any alarm. Failure to do so can result in injury or death.

• This CO Alarm should receive continuous 120VAC, 60 Hz, pure sine

wave electrical power. (The battery is meant for emergency back-
up only). Do not use in an extension cord or outlet controlled by a
dimmer or switch.

• NEVER ignore any alarm. See “If Your CO Alarm Sounds” for more

information on how to respond to an alarm. Failure to respond can
result in injury or death.

• Test this Carbon Monoxide Alarm once a week. If it ever fails to

test correctly, have it replaced immediately! If the CO Alarm is not
working properly, it cannot alert you to a problem.

• This product is intended for use in ordinary indoor locations of

family living units. It is not designed to measure CO levels in
compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(OSHA) commercial or industrial standards. Individuals with
medical conditions that may make them more sensitive to carbon
monoxide may consider using warning devices which provide
audible and visual signals for carbon monoxide concentrations
under 30 ppm. For additional information on carbon monoxide and
your medical condition contact your physician.


The Cover Of Your CO Alarm


M08-0002-003 Q

04/08 Printed in Mexico


This user’s manual contains important information about your

CO Alarm’s operation. If you are installing this CO Alarm for use by

others, you must leave this manual—or a copy of it—with the end user.











, 60Hz, 0.09A


Printed in Mexico M08-0002-003 Q


First Alert


is a registered trademark of the First Alert Trust.


BRK Brands, Inc., ("BRK") the maker of First Alert


brand products warrants that for a period of five years from the date of purchase, this product will be free from

defects in material and workmanship. BRK, at its option, will repair or replace this product or any component of the product found to be defective during the warranty
period. Replacement will be made with a new or remanufactured product or component. If the product is no longer available, replacement may be made with a similar
product of equal or greater value. This is your exclusive warranty. This warranty is valid for the original retail purchaser from the date of initial retail purchase and is
not transferable. Keep the original sales receipt. Proof of purchase is required to obtain warranty performance. BRK dealers, service centers, or retail stores selling
BRK products do not have the right to alter, modify or any way change the terms and conditions of this warranty.
This warranty does not cover normal wear of parts or damage resulting from any of the following: negligent use or misuse of the product, use on improper voltage or
current, use contrary to the operating instructions, disassembly, repair or alteration by anyone other than BRK or an authorized service center. Further, the warranty
does not cover Acts of God, such as fire, flood, hurricanes and tornadoes or any batteries that are included with this unit.
BRK shall not be liable for any incidental or consequential damages caused by the breach of any express or implied warranty. Except to the extent prohibited by applicable
law, any implied warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose is limited in duration to the duration of the above warranty. Some states, provinces or
jurisdictions do not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or consequential damages or limitations on how long an implied warranty lasts, so the above limitations
or exclusion may not apply to you. This warranty gives you specific legal rights, and you may also have other rights that vary from state to state or province to province.
How to Obtain Warranty Service
If service is required, do not return the product to your retailer. In order to obtain warranty service, contact the Consumer Affairs Division at 1-800-323-9005,
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM Central Standard Time, Monday through Friday. To assist us in serving you, please have the model number and date of purchase available when
calling. For Warranty Service return to: BRK Brands, Inc., 25 Spur Drive, El Paso, TX 79906
Battery: BRK Brands, Inc. make no warranty, express or implied, written or oral, including that of merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose
with respect to battery.


Push and hold the Test/Silence button until you hear an acknowledge chirp and
a loud alarm sounds — 4 beeps, pause, 4 beeps. This sequence should last for
10 seconds. If the Alarm ever fails to test properly, replace it immediately. If the
Alarm is not working properly, refer to “Limited Warranty”.

If the Alarm ever fails to test properly, replace it immediately.
Products under warranty may be returned to the manufacturer for
replacement. See “Limited Warranty” at the end of this manual.

DO NOT stand close to the Alarm when the horn is sounding.
Exposure at close range may be harmful to your hearing. When
testing, step away when horn starts sounding.

NEVER use vehicle exhaust! Exhaust may cause permanent damage
and voids your warranty.


To keep the CO Alarm working properly:

Test it every week as described in “Weekly Testing.”

Vacuum the CO Alarm cover at least once a month, using the soft brush
attachment. Never use water, cleaners, or solvents, since they may damage
the unit. Test the Alarm again after vacuuming.

Replace the battery immediately when you see/hear the “Low Battery

The Low (or Missing) Battery Warning (CO5120PDBN):
The horn will “chirp” once a minute and the word “bat” will flash on and off
on the display.


Choosing a replacement battery: This unit requires one standard 9V alkaline
battery. The following alkaline batteries are acceptable as replacements:
Duracell #MN1604 or MX1604; Eveready “Energizer” 522. These replacement
batteries are commonly available at local retail stores.

Use only the alkaline or lithium replacement batteries listed. The unit may not
operate properly with other batteries. Never use rechargeable batteries since
they may not provide a constant charge.

DO NOT spray cleaning chemicals or insect sprays directly on or near
the CO Alarm. DO NOT paint over the CO Alarm. Doing so may cause
permanent damage.

Household cleaners, aerosol chemicals and other contaminants can
affect the sensor. When using any of these materials near the CO Alarm,
make sure the room is well ventilated.

If your home is being fumigated, unplug the unit temporarily and put it
where it will not be exposed to chemicals or fumes. When fumigation is
complete and all traces of fumes clear, plug the unit back in and retest it.

Standards: Underwriters Laboratories Inc. Single and Multiple Station carbon
monoxide alarms UL2034.
According to Underwriters Laboratories Inc. UL2034, Section 1-1.2: “Carbon
monoxide alarms covered by these requirements are intended to respond to
the presence of carbon monoxide from sources such as, but not limited to,
exhaust from internal-combustion engines, abnormal operation of fuel-fired
appliances, and fireplaces. CO Alarms are intended to alarm at carbon
monoxide levels below those that could cause a loss of ability to react to the
dangers of Carbon Monoxide exposure.” This CO Alarm monitors the air at
the Alarm, and is designed to alarm before CO levels become life threatening.
This allows you precious time to leave the house and correct the problem.
This is only possible if Alarms are located, installed, and maintained as
described in this manual.
Gas Detection at Typical Temperature and Humidity Ranges: The CO Alarm
is not formulated to detect CO levels below 30 ppm typically. UL tested for false
alarm resistance to Methane (500 ppm), Butane (300 ppm), Heptane (500 ppm),
Ethyl Acetate (200 ppm), Isopropyl Alcohol (200 ppm) and Carbon Dioxide (5000
ppm). Values measure gas and vapor concentrations in parts per million.
Audible Alarm: 85 dB minimum at 10 feet (3 meters).



If the Alarm..

You should...

Red light is OFF. Unit will not alarm when you press
the Test/Silence button.

Unit may not be receiving any power.

Check the AC power supply. Make sure the power
connector is securely attached to the Alarm. Make
sure a fresh 9V battery is installed to power the
battery back-up.

Red light flashes once a minute (horn is silent).
(CO5120PDBN display reads “bat”).

Alarm is not receiving AC power.

Unit is operating on DC battery back-up. Check the
AC power supply.

The red light flashes and the horn “chirps” once a
minute. (CO5120PDBN display flashes “bat”).

Low battery warning.

Replace the 9V battery in the battery back-up.
Disconnect AC power before changing the battery.

Once a minute, the alarm sounds 3 quick “chirps”,
and the red light flashes quickly three times.
(CO5120PDBN display reads “Err”).

MALFUNCTION SIGNAL. Based on its Self Test
diagnostics, the unit has detected a malfunction.
The unit needs to be replaced.

Make sure a fresh 9V battery is installed. If unit still
isn’t functioning– REPLACE IT. Units under warranty
should be returned to manufacturer for replacement.
See “Limited Warranty” for details.

CO Alarm sounds frequently even though no high
levels of CO are revealed in an investigation.

The CO Alarm may be improperly located.
Refer to “Where to Install CO Alarms.”

Relocate your Alarm. If frequent alarms continue, have
home rechecked for potential CO problems. You may
be experiencing an intermittent CO problem.


Actuation of your CO Alarm indicates the presence of carbon monoxide (CO)
which can kill you. When your CO Alarm sounds, you must not ignore it!


1. Operate the Test/Silence button to silence the alarm.
2. Call your emergency services, fire department or 911. Write down the

number of your local emergency service here:


3. Immediately move to fresh air—outdoors or by an open door or window.

Do a head count to check that all persons are accounted for. Do not re-
enter the premises, or move away from the open door or window until the
emergency services responder has arrived, the premises have been aired
out, and your CO Alarm remains in its normal condition.

4. After following steps 1-3, if your CO Alarm reactivates within a 24-hour period,

repeat steps 1-3 and call a qualified appliance technician to investigate for
sources of CO from fuel-burning equipment and appliances, and inspect for
proper operation of this equipment. If problems are identified during this
inspection have the equipment serviced immediately. Note any combustion
equipment not inspected by the technician, and consult the manufacturers’
instructions, or contact the manufacturers directly, for more information about
CO safety and this equipment. Make sure that motor vehicles are not, and
have not, been operating in an attached garage or adjacent to the residence.
Write down the number of a qualified appliance technician here:


Alarms have various limitations. See "General Limitations of CO Alarms"
for details.


NEVER disconnect the power to your CO Alarm to silence the horn—
use the silence feature. Disconnecting the CO Alarm removes your
protection! See previous page for details on responding to an alarm.

The Silence Feature is intended to temporarily silence your CO Alarm’s alarm
horn while you correct the problem—it will not correct a CO problem. While the
Alarm is silenced, it will continue to monitor the air for CO. When CO reaches
alarm level, the unit will sound— repeating horn pattern: 4 beeps, a pause, 4
beeps, etc. Press and hold the Test/Silence button until the horn is silent.
The Silence cycle will last approximately 4 minutes.

To silence an interconnected series of Alarms, you must press the Test/
Silence button on the initiating alarm (the unit with the flashing red light).
If you press the Test/Silence on any other Alarm, it will only silence that unit,
not the whole interconnected series.
After the 4-minute silence cycle, the CO Alarm re-evaluates present CO
levels and responds accordingly. If CO levels remain potentially dangerous—or
start rising higher—the horn will start sounding again.

While the CO Alarm is silenced:

If the CO silent for only 4 minutes, then starts sounding loudly—4
beeps, then a pause, 4 beeps, then a pause. Red light (LED) continues flashing...
This means...CO levels are still potentially dangerous.

If the CO Alarm...remains silent....
This means...unit has returned to normal operation.


This silence feature can temporarily quiet the low battery warning “chirp” for
up to 8 hours if AC power is present. Press the Test/Silence button on the
alarm cover. Once the low battery warning “chirp” silence feature is activated,
the unit continues to flash the red light once a minute for 8 hours. After 8
hours, the low battery “chirp” will resume. Replace the battery as soon as
to maintain protection in the event of a power outage.


Alarm Latch is activated after an Alarm is exposed to alarm levels of carbon
monoxide. This feature will only work with AC power. After CO levels drop
below alarm levels, the Red LED will begin to flash On for 2 seconds and Off
for 2 seconds. It will continue to flash or “latch” until you clear it by testing
the Alarm.
This feature helps emergency responders, investigators, or service technicians
identify which unit(s) in your home were exposed to alarm levels of carbon
monoxide. This can help investigators pinpoint the source of CO.

Interconnected Alarms. Latching Alarm Indicator shows which Alarm(s) in
the series were exposed to alarm levels of carbon monoxide.
The Latching Alarm Indicator stays ON until you clear it, so it can alert you to
a CO Alarm that occurred while you were away from home, even though CO
present in the air has dropped below alarm levels.

Low Battery Latch is activated when the Alarm is in the "low battery
condition". When this occurs, the red LED flashes 4 seconds On/2 seconds
Off. This feature is designed to help you identify which Alarm needs to have
the battery replaced. Although, the Alarm will sound the low battery chirp
approximately once every minute, sometimes during the initial stages of "low
battery", the Alarm will chirp in greater intervals than one minute, sometimes
up to several hours, until the battery reaches a steady low battery level. This
innovative feature eliminates the frustration of waiting for and/or identifying
which unit is chirping.

The optional locking features are designed to prevent unauthorized removal of
the battery or alarm. It is not necessary to activate the locks in single-family
households where unauthorized battery or alarm removal is not a concern.

These CO Alarms have two separate locking features: one locks the battery
compartment, and the other locks the CO Alarm to the mounting bracket.
You can choose to use either feature independently, or use them both.

Tools you will need: • Needle-nose pliers • Standard Flathead screwdriver.

Both locking features use locking pins, molded into the mounting bracket.
Using needle nose pliers remove one or both pins, depending on which locking
features you use.


Locking Pin



Do not lock the battery compartment until you have
activated the battery and tested the battery back-up.

1. Activate the battery back-up by removing the “Pull

to Activate Battery Back-Up” tab. Push and hold the
test button on the CO Alarm’s cover until you hear
an acknowledge chirp and the alarm sounds:
4 beeps, pause, 4 beeps, pause.

If the unit does not alarm during testing, DO
NOT lock the battery compartment! Install a new
battery and test again. If it still does not alarm,
replace the CO Alarm immediately.

2. Using needle-nose pliers, detach

one locking pin from the mounting

3. Push the locking pin through the

black dot on the label on the back
of the CO Alarm.


Once the CO Alarm is installed, you must disconnect it from the AC power
before unlocking the battery compartment.

ELECTRICAL SHOCK HAZARD. Turn off the power to the area where the
CO Alarm is installed before removing it from the mounting bracket. Failure
to turn off the power first may result in serious electrical shock, injury or

1. Remove the CO Alarm from the mounting bracket. If the unit is locked to

the bracket, see the section “To Deactivate the Locking Feature.”

2. Disconnect the power connector by gently prying it away from the back

of the CO Alarm.

3. Insert a flathead screwdriver under the head of

the locking pin, and gently pry it out of the
battery compartment lock. (If you plan to relock
the battery compartment, save the locking pin.)

4. To relock the battery compartment, close the

battery door and reinsert the locking pin in the

5. Reconnect the power connector to the back of the CO Alarm, reattach

the CO Alarm to the mounting bracket, and restore the power.

When replacing the battery, always test the CO Alarm before relocking the
battery compartment.


Tools you will need:

• Needle-nose pliers
• Standard Flathead screwdriver

1. Using needle-nose pliers, detach one locking

pin from the mounting bracket.

2. Insert the locking pin into the

lock located on the pivoting
hinge of the battery door.

3. When you attach the CO Alarm

to the mounting bracket, the
locking pin’s head will fit into a
notch on the bracket.


ELECTRICAL SHOCK HAZARD. Turn off the power to the area where the
CO Alarm is installed before removing it from the mounting bracket.
Failure to turn off the power first may result in serious electrical shock,
injury or death.

Always discharge the branch circuit before servicing an AC or AC/DC
CO Alarm. First, turn off the AC power at the circuit breaker or fuse box.
Next, remove the battery from Alarms with battery back-up. Finally, press
and hold the test button.

1. Insert a flathead screwdriver between the

mounting bracket pin and the mounting bracket.

2. Pry the CO Alarm away from the bracket by

turning both the screwdriver and the CO Alarm
counterclockwise (left) at the same time.


Insert the flathead screwdriver
between the locking pin and the
lock, and pry the pin out of the lock.



The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that a CO Alarm
should be centrally located outside of each separate sleeping area in the
immediate vicinity of the bedrooms. For added protection, install additional
CO Alarms in each separate bedroom, and on every level of your home.

If your bedroom hallway is longer than 40 feet (12 meters), install a CO Alarm
at BOTH ends of the hallway.

In a Single-level Home:

• Install at least one CO Alarm near or within each separate sleeping area.

• For added protection, install an additional CO Alarm at least 20 feet

(6 meters), away from the furnace or fuel burning heat source.

In a Multi-level Home—(same as above plus):

• Install at least one CO Alarm near or within each separate sleeping area.

• For added protection, install at least one CO Alarm on each level of the

home. If you have a basement, install that CO Alarm at the top of the
basement stairs.

• For added protection, install an additional CO Alarm at least 20 feet

(6 meters) away from the furnace or fuel burning heat source.


DO NOT locate this CO Alarm:

In garages, kitchens, furnace rooms, or in any extremely dusty, dirty
or greasy areas.

Where combustion particles are produced. Combustion particles form
when something burns. Areas to avoid include poorly ventilated kitchens,
garages, and furnace rooms. Keep units at least 20 feet (6 meters) from
the sources of combustion particles (stove, furnace, water heater, space
heater) if possible. In areas where a 20-foot (6 meter) distance is not
possible — in modular, mobile, or smaller homes, for example — it is
recommended the CO Alarm be placed as far from these fuel-burning
sources as possible. The placement recommendations are intended to
keep these Alarms at a reasonable distance from a fuel-burning source,
and thus reduce “unwanted” alarms. Unwanted alarms can occur if a CO
Alarm is placed directly next to a fuel-burning source. Ventilate these
areas as much as possible.

Within 5 feet (1.5 meter) of any cooking appliance.

In extremely humid areas. This Alarm should be at least 10 feet (3 meter)
from a bath or shower, sauna, humidifier, vaporizer, dishwasher, laundry
room, utility room or other source of high humidity.

In areas where temperature is colder than 40˚ F (4˚ C) or hotter than 100˚ F
(38˚ C). These areas include non-airconditioned crawl spaces, unfinished
attics, uninsulated or poorly insulated ceilings, porches, and garages.

In turbulent air, like near ceiling fans, heat vents, air conditioners,
fresh air returns, or open windows. Blowing air may prevent CO from
reaching the sensors.

In direct sunlight.

• This CO Alarm is designed for use inside a single-family home or

apartment. It is not meant to be used in common lobbies, hallways,
or basements of multi-family buildings unless working CO Alarms
are also installed in each family living unit. CO Alarms in common
areas may not be heard from inside individual family living units.

• This CO Alarm alone is not a suitable substitute for complete

detection systems in places which house many people, like hotels
or dormitories, unless a CO Alarm is also placed in each unit.

• DO NOT use this CO Alarm in warehouses, industrial or commercial

buildings, special-purpose non-residential buildings, RVs, boats,
or airplanes. This CO Alarm is specifically designed for residential
use, and may not provide adequate protection in non-residential












This unit is designed to be mounted on any standard wiring junction box up
to a 4-inch (10 cm) size, on either the ceiling or wall. Read “Where to Install CO
Alarms” and “Where Not To Install CO Alarms” before you begin installation.

• This Alarm must have AC or battery power to operate. If the AC

power fails, the battery back-up will power the Alarm for a short
time if the 9V battery is fresh and correctly installed. If AC power
fails, and the battery is dead or missing, the Alarm cannot operate.

• Make sure the alarm is not receiving excessive noisy power.

Examples of noisy power could be major appliances on the same
circuit, power from a generator or solar power, light dimmer on the
same circuit or mounted near fluorescent lighting. Excessive noisy
power may cause damage to your Alarm.

Find the pair of self-adhesive labels included with this CO Alarm.

• On each label write in the phone number of your emergency responder

(like 911) and a qualified appliance technician.

• Place one label near the CO Alarm, and the other label in the “fresh air”

location you plan to go if the alarm sounds.

NOTE: A qualified appliance technician is defined as “a person, firm, corporation,
or company that either in person or through a representative, is engaged in and
responsible for the installation, testing, servicing, or replacement of heating,
ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, combustion appliances and
equipment, and/or gas fireplaces or other decorative combustion equipment.”



Mounting Bracket


Mounting Slot and Screw*


Locking Pins (break out of


Hot (Black) AC Wire


Neutral (White) AC Wire


Interconnect Wire (Orange)


Lever to Open Battery


Swing-Out Battery


Quick-Connect Power

*Not Included












Tools you will need: Standard Flathead screwdriver.

ELECTRICAL SHOCK HAZARD. Turn off power to the area where you
will install this unit at the circuit breaker or fuse box before beginning
installation. Failure to turn off the power before installation may result
in serious electrical shock, injury or death.

To install this unit:

1. Remove the mounting bracket from the base. Position the screw

slots on the mounting bracket over the screws in the junction box.
Tighten the screws.

2. Using wire nuts, connect the power connector to the AC power.

Improper wiring of the power connector or the wiring leading to the
power connector will cause damage to the Alarm and may lead to a
non-functioning Alarm.

3. Plug the power connector into the back of the CO Alarm.

4. Position the base of the Alarm over the mounting bracket and turn.

The Alarm can be positioned over the bracket every 60°. Turn the unit
clockwise (right) until the unit is in place.

5. Check all connections.

• Connect the white wire on the power connector to the neutral wire

in the junction box.

• Connect the black wire on the power connector to the hot wire in

the junction box.

Tuck the orange wire inside the junction box. It is used for
interconnect only.

Strip off about 1/2” of the plastic coating on the orange interconnect
wire on the power connector.

Connect the white wire on the power connector to the neutral wire
(usually white) in the junction box.

Connect the black wire on the power connector to the hot wire (usual-
ly black) in the junction box.

Connect the orange wire on the power connector to the interconnect
wire in the junction box. Repeat for each unit you are interconnecting.
Never connect the hot or neutral wires in the junction box to the
orange interconnect wire.


• Failure to meet any of the above requirements could damage the

units and cause them to malfunction, removing your protection.

• AC and AC/DC CO Alarms can be interconnected. Under AC power,

all units will alarm when one senses CO. When power is interrupted,
only the AC/DC units in the series will continue to send and receive
signals. AC powered CO Alarms will not operate.

Interconnected units can provide earlier warning of a CO problem than stand-
alone units, especially if the problem starts in a remote area of the dwelling.
If any unit in the series senses CO, all CO and Smart Interconnect units will
alarm. To determine which CO Alarm initiated an alarm, refer to the table.

On Initiating CO Alarm

Red LED Flashes the alarm pattern

On All Other CO Alarms

Red LED Does Not Flash the alarm pattern

Interconnect units within a single family residence only. Otherwise all house-
holds will experience unwanted alarms when you test any unit in the series.
Interconnected units will only work if they are wired to compatible units and
all requirements are met. This unit is designed to be compatible with:
BRK Electronics


and First Alert


Models 7010, 7010B, 7020B, SC7010B,

SA520B, 9120, 9120B, SC9120B, 100S, SL177, SC7010BV, CO5120BN,
CO5120PDBN, HD6135F, HD6135FB.

Interconnected units must meet ALL of the following requirements:

• A maximum of 18 compatible Smoke, Heat or CO Alarms may be

interconnected. No more than 12 of the 18 can be Smoke Alarms per
NFPA 72.

• The same fuse or circuit breaker must power all interconnected units.

• The total length of wire interconnecting the units should be less than

1000 feet. This type of wire is commonly available at Hardware and
Electrical Supply stores.

• All wiring must conform to all local electrical codes and Articles 210 and

300.3 (B) of the National Electrical Code. Refer to your local building
code for further connection requirements.

6. Make sure the CO Alarm is receiving AC power. Under normal operation,

the red indicator light will shine continuously. If the red power indicator light
does not light, TURN OFF POWER TO THE JUNCTION BOX and recheck
all connections. If all connections are correct and the red power indicator
still does not light when you restore the power, the unit should be
replaced immediately.


Activate the battery back-up by removing the “Pull to Activate Battery
Back-Up” tab. You do not need to open the battery compartment and
reposition the battery during installation. DO NOT remove the battery
activation tab until AC power is turned on to conserve battery power.

8. Test the CO Alarm. Press and hold the test button on the cover until the

alarm sounds: 4 beeps, pause, 4 beeps, pause. In a series of interconnected
Alarms, you must test each Alarm separately by pressing and holding the
test button. Make sure all units alarm when each one is tested.

If any unit in the series does not alarm during testing, TURN OFF POWER
and recheck connections. If it does not alarm when you restore power,
replace it immediately.















A. Unswitched 120VAC

B. To Additional Alarms,

60 Hz source

Maximum = 18 Alarms

1. CO Alarm

2. Ceiling or Wall

3. Power Connector

4. Wire Nut

5. Junction Box

6. Neutral Wire (White)

7. Interconnect Wire


8. Hot Wire (Black)


If you are only installing one unit, restore power to the junction box.


If you are interconnecting multiple Alarms, repeat Step 1-5 for
each Alarm in the series. When you are finished, restore power
to the junction box.

ELECTRICAL SHOCK HAZARD. Do not restore power until all Alarms are
completely installed. Restoring power before installation is complete may
result in serious electrical shock, injury or death.



Carbon monoxide is an odorless, invisible gas, which often makes it difficult
to locate the source of CO after an alarm. These are a few of the factors that
can make it difficult to locate sources of CO:

• House well ventilated before the investigator arrives.
• Problem caused by “backdrafting.”
• Transient CO problem caused by special circumstances.

Because CO may dissipate by the time an investigator arrives, it may be
difficult to locate the source of CO. BRK Brands, Inc. shall not be obligated
to pay for any carbon monoxide investigation or service call.


Fuel-burning appliances like:
portable heater, gas or wood
burning fireplace, gas kitchen range
or cooktop, gas clothes dryer.

Damaged or insufficient

corroded or disconnected

water heater vent pipe, leaking
chimney pipe or flue, or cracked
heat exchanger, blocked or
clogged chimney opening.

Improper use of appliance/

operating a barbecue grill

or vehicle in an enclosed area (like
a garage or screened porch).

Transient CO Problems: “transient” or on-again-off-again CO problems can
be caused by outdoor conditions and other special circumstances.

The following conditions can result in transient CO situations:

1. Excessive spillage or reverse venting of fuel appliances caused by outdoor

conditions such as:

• Wind direction and/or velocity, including high, gusty winds. Heavy air in

the vent pipes (cold/humid air with extended periods between cycles).

• Negative pressure differential resulting from the use of exhaust fans.

• Several appliances running at the same time competing for limited fresh air.

• Vent pipe connections vibrating loose from clothes dryers, furnaces, or

water heaters.

• Obstructions in or unconventional vent pipe designs which can amplify

the above situations.

2. Extended operation of unvented fuel burning devices (range, oven, fireplace).

3. Temperature inversions, which can trap exhaust close to the ground.

4. Car idling in an open or closed attached garage, or near a home.

These conditions are dangerous because they can trap exhaust in your home.
Since these conditions can come and go, they are also hard to recreate during
a CO investigation.

CO Alarm goes back into alarm 4 minutes after
you press the Test/Silence button.

CO levels are still potentially dangerous.

Refer to “If Your CO Alarm Sounds” for details on
how to respond to an alarm. If anyone is feeling ill,
EVACUATE your home immediately and call 911.

This CO Alarm is intended for residential use. It is not intended for use in
industrial applications where Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(OSHA) requirements for carbon monoxide detectors must be met.
CO alarms may not waken all individuals.
If children or others do not readily
waken to the sound of the CO alarm, or if there are infants or family members
with mobility limitations, make sure that someone is assigned to assist them
in the event of an emergency.
CO Alarms will not work without power. This CO Alarm requires a continuous
supply of AC power, and a fresh, correctly installed 9V battery to power the
battery back-up. The battery back-up is for emergency use only!
CO Alarms for Solar or Wind Energy users and battery backup power

AC powered CO Alarms should only be operated with true or pure

sine wave inverters. Operating this CO Alarm with most battery-powered UPS
(uninterruptible power supply) products or square wave or “quasi sine wave”
inverters will damage the Alarm. If you are not sure about your inverter or
UPS type, please consult with the manufacturer to verify.
This CO Alarm will not sense carbon monoxide that does not reach the
This CO Alarm will only sense CO at the sensor. CO may be present
in other areas. Doors or other obstructions may affect the rate at which CO
reaches the CO Alarm. For this reason, if bedroom doors are usually closed
at night, we recommend you install a CO Alarm in each bedroom and in the
hallway between them.
CO Alarms may not sense CO on another level of the home. For example,
a CO Alarm on the second level, near the bedrooms, may not sense CO in
the basement. For this reason, one CO Alarm may not give adequate warning.
Complete coverage is recommended. Place CO Alarms on each level of the

CO Alarms may not be heard. The Alarm horn loudness meets or exceeds
current UL standards of 85 dB at 10 feet (3 meters). However, if the CO Alarm
is installed outside the bedroom, it may not wake up a sound sleeper or one
who has recently used drugs or has been drinking alcoholic beverages. This
is especially true if the door is closed or only partly open. Even persons who
are awake may not hear the alarm horn if the sound is blocked by distance or
closed doors. Noise from traffic, stereo, radio, television, air conditioner, or
other appliances may also prevent alert persons from hearing the alarm horn.
This CO Alarm is not intended for people who are hearing impaired.
CO Alarms are not a substitute for a smoke alarm. Although fire is a source
of carbon monoxide, this CO Alarm does not sense smoke or fire. This CO
Alarm senses CO that may be escaping unnoticed from malfunctioning
furnaces, appliances, or other sources. Early warning of fire requires the
installation of smoke alarms.
CO Alarms are not a substitute for life insurance. Though these CO Alarms
warn against increasing CO levels, BRK Brands, Inc. does not warrant or imply
in any way that they will protect lives from CO poisoning. Homeowners and
renters must still insure their lives.
CO Alarms have a limited life. Although the CO Alarm and all of its parts have
passed many stringent tests and are designed to be as reliable as possible,
any of these parts could fail at any time. Therefore, you must test your CO
Alarm weekly.
CO Alarms are not foolproof. Like all other electronic devices, CO Alarms
have limitations. They can only detect CO that reaches their sensors. They
may not give early warning to rising CO levels if the CO is coming from a
remote part of the home, away from the CO Alarm.



Underwriters Laboratories Inc. Standard UL2034 requires residential CO
Alarms to sound when exposed to levels of CO and exposure times as
described below. They are measured in parts per million (ppm) of CO over
time (in minutes).

UL2034 Required Alarm Points*:

• If the Alarm is exposed to 400 ppm of CO, IT MUST ALARM BETWEEN

4 and 15 MINUTES

• If the Alarm is exposed to 150 ppm of CO, IT MUST ALARM BETWEEN

10 and 50 MINUTES.

• If the Alarm is exposed to 70 ppm of CO, IT MUST ALARM BETWEEN

60 and 240 MINUTES.

* Approximately 10% COHb exposure at levels of 10% to 95% Relative
Humidity (RH).
The unit is designed not to alarm when exposed to a constant level
of 30 ppm for 30 days.

CO Alarms are designed to alarm before there is an immediate life threat.
Since you cannot see or smell CO, never assume it’s not present.

• An exposure to 100 ppm of CO for 20 minutes may not affect average,

healthy adults, but after 4 hours the same level may cause headaches.

• An exposure to 400 ppm of CO may cause headaches in average,

healthy adults after 35 minutes, but can cause death after 2 hours.


ELECTRICAL SHOCK HAZARD. Turn off the power to the area where
the CO Alarm is installed BEFORE removing it from the mounting
bracket or checking any electrical connections! Failure to turn off the
power first may result in serious electrical shock, injury or death.

The following guide can help you identify a potential problem with the
installation or operation of your CO Alarm. NOTE: It is not meant to be
an all-inclusive list of all CO Alarm conditions.

If you are experiencing a

condition not covered in the next several pages, please contact Consumer


LED (Red Light)



On continuously with AC


Flash a minute with battery


LED flashes approximating

Horn pattern:

the horn pattern.

4 beeps, pause,
4 beeps, pause


Low battery Latch Pattern

Horn “chirps”


once a minute

WARNING: When the AC power is Off, if the battery is dead or missing,
the CO Alarm cannot work.


LED flashes approximating

Horn pattern:

Single CO Alarm

the horn pattern.

4 beeps, pause,

(Stand alone Alarm)

4 beeps, pause,


LED flashes rapidly on the unit(s)

Horn pattern:


that triggered the alarm. LEDs

4 beeps, pause,

Series of CO Alarms)

on the other Alarms in the series

repeating on all

will not flash

CO Alarms


LED flashes approximating

Horn stays quiet

the horn pattern.

for 4 minutes


LED flashing approximately

Horn is Silent for


every minute.

up to 8 hours.


Audio Off and LED flashing

Horn is Silent

2 seconds On, 2 seconds Off
after local alarm unless reset
by Test/Silence button.


LED flashing 4 seconds On,

Horn is Silent


2 seconds Off.

NOTE: Latching features are not active during battery backup mode


LED flashes 3 times

Horn sounds

synchronized with 3 rapid chirps

3 rapid chirps
every minute




Alarm operating
on AC power

Alarm operating
on emergency
battery back-up

Low / missing
battery warning

“Err” Alarm is
not operating

The CO Memory Feature lets you check the highest level of CO recorded
during an alarm.

To check CO Memory:

1. Press and release the Test/Silence/Scroll button until the dash scrolls

to “MEMORY”.

2. Press and hold Test/Silence/Scroll button to display Memory CO level.

To clear CO Memory:

1. Press and release the Test/Silence/Scroll button until the dash scrolls to


2. Press and hold the Test/Silence/Scroll button until the display shows “CLr.”

NOTE: The highest CO level will be saved, even after a power interruption,
until you clear it. DO NOT clear the CO Memory reading if you plan to call
someone to investigate a CO problem! Clear the CO Memory reading only
after the investigator has checked your home.


This CO Alarm includes “Smart Interconnect” which enables the Alarm to be
interconnected with other BRK Smoke and CO Alarms. When interconnected
to Smoke Alarms that go into alarm, this CO Alarm will sound the smoke
horn pattern.



These symptoms are related to CO POISONING and should be discussed
with ALL household members.
Mild Exposure: Slight headache, nausea, vomiting, fatigue (“flu-like” symptoms).
Medium Exposure: Throbbing headache, drowsiness, confusion, fast heart rate.
Extreme Exposure: Convulsions, unconsciousness, heart and lung failure.
Exposure to Carbon Monoxide can cause brain damage, death.

This CO Alarm measures exposure to CO over time. It alarms if CO levels
are extremely high in a short period of time, or if CO levels reach a certain
minimum over a long period of time. The CO Alarm generally sounds an alarm
before the onset of symptoms in average, healthy adults.

Why is this important? Because you need to be warned of a potential CO
problem while you can still react in time. In many reported cases of CO
exposure, victims may be aware that they are not feeling well, but become
disoriented and can no longer react well enough to exit the building or get
help. Also, young children and pets may be the first affected. The average
healthy adult might not feel any symptoms when the CO Alarm sounds.
However, people with cardiac or respiratory problems, infants, unborn babies,
pregnant mothers, or elderly people can be more quickly and severely affected
by CO. If you experience even mild symptoms of CO poisoning, consult your
doctor immediately!



CO is an invisible, odorless, tasteless gas produced when fossil fuels do not
burn completely, or are exposed to heat (usually fire). Electrical appliances
typically do not produce CO.

These fuels include: Wood, coal, charcoal, oil, natural gas, gasoline, kerosene,
and propane.

Common appliances are often sources of CO. If they are not properly main-
tained, are improperly ventilated, or malfunction, CO levels can rise quickly.
CO is a real danger now that homes are more energy efficient. “Air-tight”
homes with added insulation, sealed windows, and other weatherproofing
can “trap” CO inside.


A CO Alarm is an excellent means of protection. It monitors the air and sounds
a loud alarm before carbon monoxide levels become threatening for average,
healthy adults.

A CO Alarm is not a substitute for proper maintenance of home appliances.
To help prevent CO problems and reduce the risk of CO poisoning:

• Clean chimneys and flues yearly. Keep them free of debris, leaves, and

nests for proper air flow. Also, have a professional check for rust and
corrosion, cracks, or separations. These conditions can prevent proper
air movement and cause backdrafting. Never “cap” or cover a chimney
in any way that would block air flow.

• Test and maintain all fuel-burning equipment annually. Many local gas

or oil companies and HVAC companies offer appliance inspections for
a nominal fee.

• Make regular visual inspections of all fuel-burning appliances. Check

appliances for excessive rust and scaling. Also check the flame on the
burner and pilot lights. The flame should be blue. A yellow flame means
fuel is not being burned completely and CO may be present. Keep the
blower door on the furnace closed. Use vents or fans when they are
available on all fuel-burning appliances. Make sure appliances are vented
to the outside. Do not use grills or barbecue indoors, or in garages or
on screen porches.

• Check for exhaust backflow from CO sources. Check the draft hood on

an operating furnace for a backdraft. Look for cracks on furnace heat

• Check the house or garage on the other side of shared wall.
• Keep windows and doors open slightly. If you suspect that CO is escaping

into your home, open a window or a door. Opening windows and doors
can significantly decrease CO levels.


Model CO5120BN



Model CO5120PDBN

For your records, please record:

Date Purchased: ______________Where Purchased: _____________________

Date Installed: ____________/____________Month/Year

Replacement date is five years after installation:


NOTE: End of Life Signal — Once the unit reaches the end of its lifecycle,
the MALFUNCTION SIGNAL will sound once a minute to indicate the need
to immediately replace the Alarm.


UL 2034







1. Test/Silence Button or

Test/Silence/Scroll Button
(CO5120PDBN only)


3. Air Vents

4. (Behind the Cover) Alarm Horn:

85 dB audible alarm for test, alarm,
and unit malfunction warning.

5. Digital Display (CO5120PDBN only)

Levels of CO shown
in ppm if present.

During Testing, the display flashes "30, 70, 150, 400" briefly.

During initial power up display flashes "888" briefly.