Detection of Carbon Monoxide (CO) in Parking Garages / Loading Bays / Warehouses


WarehouseVehicle exhaust is a major source of Carbon Monoxide and a toxic gas often referred to as the silent killer. All enclosed spaces where Carbon Monoxide is a risk are mandated to have forced ventilation and a minimum number of air changes per hour. This is achieved using ventilation fans, that often run continuously to ensure that the risks are minimised.

The areas most at risk are enclosed parking areas, loading bays, maintenance areas and warehouses. Additionally, areas where internal combustion engines are enclosed are also areas where the risk of Carbon Monoxide is high.

Parking garages where LPG fuelled cars, fork-lifts, etc., may be operating present a further risk of flammable vapours in the atmosphere.


Continuously running ventilation fans is expensive, particularly when traffic levels are low. This is sometimes overcome by using timers, however, this can also be problematic as shift patterns can change, or usage of car parks can change, e.g. late night shopping, etc.

Internal Car ParkExample of cost involved:

8 x 3 HP fans = 24 HP

24HP * 0.8 = 19.2 KW/H

19.2 KW/H* 8760 hours / year = 168192 KW / Year

Current cost UK circa 0.15p / unit

Total cost = £25,228

In addition to the monetary cost, there are also carbon footprint issues to consider particularly in new build situations where new constructions have targets to reduce Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions as part of the contract.

Another cost, which cannot be quantified, is the loss of heat or cooling due to the extraction of the atmosphere in these areas.


Loading BayGMI have a wide range of products specifically designed to meet and exceed all the requirements of Carbon Monoxide detection in these applications. These systems have been designed to meet the vast range of different applications that are presented by monitoring Carbon Monoxide and control of the ventilation systems. The Active-8 and Active-80 range of controllers can be fitted with low cost Carbon Monoxide detectors, that can be installed at appropriate sites within the enclosed areas. These sensors are then wired back to either a suitable GMI control system or a building management system.

These control systems will have programmable alarm set points that can provide suitable outputs to control fans and / or HVAC systems. Depending upon application, savings of up to 50% can be made by the use of Carbon Monoxide monitoring systems. This translates in the example above of approximately £12,500 per annum.

GMI will be happy to carry out energy saving calculations for any particular application.

These systems can also be fitted with flammable gas detectors, if there is risk from gas powered vehicles, as an additional benefit.

Users of GMI Carbon Monoxide systems include:

  • Glaxo Smith Kline
  • Scottish and Newcastle
  • Coors
  • British Energy
  • De Montford University
  • Leicester City Council
  • . . . plus many others

GMI are more than happy to discuss your particular requirement for detection and will be able to propose the best system for your needs. This service is provided free of charge and without any obligation, so please call GMI +44 (0) 141 812 3211 and ask for Fixed Systems Applications Team or alternatively, email our sales team.

As an ISO 9001 approved company, GMI Ltd’s quality assurance programmes demand the continuous assessment and improvement of all GMI products. Information in this article could thus change without notification and does not constitute a product specification.

Please contact GMI or their representative if you require more details.