CO or not CO

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Great Horned Owl

Well-known member
Feb 10, 2012
Lake County, Illinois
I have been wondering why it is unsafe to use a propane grill indoors because of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning? We are just fine using a propane stove indoors. Can there really be that much difference in the amount of CO gas generated by what are two very similar burners?

When you run your stove you should turn on the vent to help provent exposure.  I dont know the tech reason but i do know that a normal camp propane stove stinks like crazy even outside so im sure this means that there is more gas being released compared to a stove in an RV.  So to put a camp stove inside would be dangerious.
It is because it is burning oxygen which can suffocate you. Very dangerous.
Both the grill and the stove burn oxygen. The difference is that the stove is certified for indoor use in an RV (for cooking only), the grill is not.
More than likely you will have your propane tank inside as well if you are going use your outdoor grill in-doors. Not a good idea and somewhere I am sure in the manual it warns you not to use in-doors.
I believe the burner on the stove or heater is built to much tighter specs to make SURE the burner burns cleanly and in a manner that guarantees an ample supply of fresh air (oxygen).  On a grill, it can burn propane so fast that not enough oxygen can get to the burner, thus, CO is generated instead of CO2.

Don't take the chance!  Keep the grill cooking outside!
The indoor burners are designed to burn efficiently and not produce co. If you were to read the instruction manual it specifically says if the flame is not like "this" do not use. A propane grill is designed to use outside and is much less dependent on having a proper flame. Never use outdoor equipment indoors no matter what it is. There is a reason it is labeled outdoor use only.
Can there really be that much difference in the amount of CO gas generated by what are two very similar burners?
Yes there can. Probably not much, if any, difference when new, but most grills use light duty stamped metal burners that quickly begin to corrode or get plugged with food waste. They rely on an excess of available oxygen in the air to avoid CO problems.

A related issue is that outdoor stoves are not required to meet indoor stove fire & gas safety standards, e.g. a stove hood that many building codes require.  Thus the manufacturer stipulates "not for use indoors" to avoid legal liability for whatever may happen.

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