Do co detectors detect co2?

No. The co detector is a specialised device for detecting carbon monoxide, not carbon dioxide, it can be applied to detecting carbon monoxide leakage, adopting high-precision electrochemical sensors, with the advantages of stable signals, high accuracy, etc. The co detector is designed to detect carbon monoxide, not carbon dioxide.

NDIR CO2 Sensor Module FS00302

What is the difference between carbon monoxide detector and carbon dioxide detector?

The names of these two gases are very similar because they are both mixtures of carbon and oxygen. However, these two gases are produced by different chemical reactions.

Production of Carbon Dioxide

Carbon dioxide is a product of complete combustion. Complete combustion is a chemical reaction in which hydrocarbons react with oxygen to form carbon dioxide and water. Complete combustion usually, but not always, produces a flame.

Candle burning can be seen as a type of complete combustion: the wax of the candle, a hydrocarbon, reacts with the oxygen in the air with the heat generated by lighting the wick. A colourless, odourless gas, carbon dioxide, is released into the air.

Most of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere comes from natural sources such as the oceans, animal (including human) and plant respiration, decomposition of organic matter, forest fires and volcanic eruptions.

Some carbon dioxide also comes from human activities (anthropogenic sources), including the burning of fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas and oil.

The combustion of such fuels releases energy that is converted into heat, electricity or power. Such activities account for 87 per cent of the carbon dioxide produced by humans, while the other 13 per cent is produced through deforestation, land-use changes and industrial processes such as cement manufacturing.

Carbon dioxide is essentially a non-reactive gas that mixes quickly into the atmosphere when released.

Carbon dioxide is also produced in industrial processes. Major sources of commercial production of carbon dioxide include industrial plants that produce hydrogen or ammonia from feedstocks such as natural gas and coal, as well as high-volume fermentation operations.

Carbon dioxide also has a wide range of applications in the food and beverage industry, including carbonated beverages. Solid carbon dioxide, commonly known as ‘dry ice’, is commonly used for the transport of frozen or chilled food and medical or pharmaceutical materials.

FS01301 (3)
Electrochemical CO Carbon Monoxide Gas Sensor FS01301

Production of carbon monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a product of incomplete combustion. Incomplete combustion occurs when there is an insufficient supply of air during combustion, and only half of the oxygen reacts with the carbon to form carbon monoxide (one CO molecule contains one oxygen atom, and one CO2 molecule contains two oxygen atoms).

Unlike carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide in the atmosphere does not occur naturally, but through the incomplete combustion of raw materials such as coal, natural gas and oil. Carbon monoxide occurs in the mixture produced by combustion when oxygen levels are low and combustion temperatures are too low.

Any fuel-burning device we use (including gas furnaces, gas cookers, gas dryers, gas water heaters, fireplaces, and automobiles) can produce high levels of carbon monoxide in large quantities around our homes or offices, which can threaten our lives. Carbon monoxide, however, is a colourless, odourless gas that must be identified by specialist equipment.

In the industrial sector, carbon monoxide produced within the workplace mainly comes from internal combustion engines. Many gas furnaces and stoves also produce large quantities of this gas, especially if they are not properly maintained. There is a higher risk of exposure to this gas from truck drivers, forklift operators, or people working near such equipment. Workers near or inside enclosed areas or confined spaces (such as garages, tunnels, loading docks, warehouses, vehicle repair shops and collocated vehicles) are also at risk.


Although carbon monoxide is generally a harmful by-product, encapsulated carbon monoxide can be used in a variety of industries including metal fabrication, chemical manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, electronics and semiconductor applications, as well as in the reduction of ores in the manufacture of metal carbonyl compounds.

4 Gas Detector FS11301

Gas Detectors Measure Carbon Monoxide and Carbon Dioxide

When choosing a gas detector for your workplace, if you choose a single gas detector, it will only detect one gas. For example, a carbon monoxide detector can only detect carbon monoxide and not carbon dioxide and vice versa. This is because each gas has a different sensor. Fortunately, you have a variety of choices when selecting the appropriate carbon monoxide detector and/or carbon dioxide detector, including single-gas, multi-gas, portable, and area monitors. Selecting the appropriate instrument requires an understanding of the environment and the nature of the gas or gases you want to detect.