Flying with a portable CO Detector

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Apr 3, 2018
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My wife and I will be traveling with 2 granddaughters to Italy. We'll have an incredible time I'm sure, but its a lot of responsibility since their parents aren't part of the plan! After hearing of the family in Mexico being asphyxiated, I'm planning on taking a small lithium battery-powered CO detector along with us, particularly for our nights in apartments. I've checked the TSA website -- nothing about CO detectors or smoke detectors. Should I pack this in checked luggage to be safe rather than taking a chance with carry-on? Thanks!
 
Apr 10, 2017
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What lucky granddaughters you have! When will you be going to Italy? I am also wanting to take a portable CO detector on my next trip. Once you get back can you update us on whether or not you have any problems taking it with you? Have a great time in Italy.
 
Likes: jsn55
Apr 3, 2018
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Thanks Neil for the fast response! The FAA link is what I needed -- it says that lithium ion batteries need to be in carry on if they are spare/uninstalled, but if they are installed in a device such as the detector, they can be either carry on or checked. The CO detector I'll be taking has a sealed lithium battery, so looks like I can check it....Guy
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#5
If it were me, I'd still carry it on. I wouldn't want to take the chance they are going to go through my luggage to see what I am carrying. I am also worried about it catching fire in the cargo hold. If anything happens in the plane, its a lot easier to pull it out to extinguish in the cabin. But that's just me.
 
Likes: jsn55
Sep 19, 2015
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#6
Thanks Neil for the fast response! The FAA link is what I needed -- it says that lithium ion batteries need to be in carry on if they are spare/uninstalled, but if they are installed in a device such as the detector, they can be either carry on or checked. The CO detector I'll be taking has a sealed lithium battery, so looks like I can check it....Guy
Some airlines have more strict regulations than the FAA. AA does not want any packed in checked luggage.

Airlines are allowed to be more strict than the FAA.

Also please note that a CO2 detector will not detect a natural gas leak.
 

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Likes: Neil Maley
Jul 13, 2016
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#7
Please check with your specific airline. It is going to be extremely expensive to change your tickets if they deny you boarding at the airport. And if the batteries are lithium, I am not sure you would allowed to just throw away the device and board. It would most likely need to be disposed of in a certain manner.
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Apr 3, 2018
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#9
Thanks Neil for the fast response! The FAA link is what I needed -- it says that lithium ion batteries need to be in carry on if they are spare/uninstalled, but if they are installed in a device such as the detector, they can be either carry on or checked. The CO detector I'll be taking has a sealed lithium battery, so looks like I can check it....Guy
Just buy a CO detector that uses a regular alkaline battery.
Thanks to all of the responders! I checked United -- their policy for lithium mirrors the FAA rules, but, who knows if TSA and United folk all know the rules when it comes time to check in. I'd probably be ok, but to increase my chances of success I'm returning the lithium CO detector and am getting one that is almost as small (smaller the better for travel) that uses regular batteries. I'll add to this post in late June, after I return from my trip, to provide an update.
 
Likes: Neil Maley

Neil Maley

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#10
I think that is a good idea. Are you staying in hotels or Airbnb? If you are using hotels this is probably something you never have to worry about. If you are doing Airbnb - then you have a legit concern because none of them are checked for safety, nor do many of them even answer to local building codes because many of them are simply folks renting out their house and don't report the rentals to anyone. That is what happened to that family in Mexico. In France, many of the apartment rentals are with large hoteliers that do have safety standards and the apartments have safety checks.

As a grandparent, I understand where you are coming from - we worry more about our grandchildren than we did our own kids.