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Take care with silent killer

DEAR?READERS: With winter on the way, cold weather means it’s time to check the furnace and fireplace, and review the dangers of carbon monoxide. Known as the “silent killer,” carbon monoxide is odorless and tasteless, and you can’t see it, either. It can come from the exhaust of heaters and furnaces. It can creep up on you, sort of like you have the flu. These are some of symptoms: dizziness, nausea and an extreme tired feeling.

How to prevent carbon-monoxide buildup? Good ventilation around appliances. NEVER use the oven or dryer to heat a room! Carbon monoxide detectors installed close to bedrooms are critical. (You can call 211 to see if you qualify for a free detector.)

If you suspect carbon-monoxide poisoning (most likely, everyone in the family would be feeling sick or headachy), do the following:

l Open doors and windows.

l Shut off fuel-burning appliances.

l LEAVE THE DWELLING right away.

l Call the fire department (911) and your utility company. (Do not call from your home phone.)

l Be SAFE, not sorry!

– Heloise

DEAR?HELOISE: I have this beautiful, large, antique bronze swan that is dingy-looking. What do you suggest for cleaning it? Thank you!

– Violet P., Rosenberg, Texas

Violet, if the bronze swan is a REAL antique, you may not want to clean it yourself before checking with an antique shop first. They can tell you if it’s OK to clean. If it’s just a swan and really doesn’t have much value, clean away! You can use the old standby: a few drops of soap and warm water, a soft cloth and elbow grease. Rinse well and dry. If it’s large, do yourself a favor and buy some commercial cleaner.

– Heloise

DEAR?HELOISE: My friend’s daughter dropped a bottle of perfume on her tile floor in the bathroom. It spilled everywhere! She sprinkled baking soda over the entire stain and swept it up. She wiped the floor with rubbing alcohol, and left a fresh bowl of baking soda on the bathroom counter for the rest of the day. The strong scent went away.

– Elizabeth in San Antonio

Baking soda will help remove and neutralize many odors. Remember, a small bowl absorbs only so much. If it’s an entire room, sprinkle baking soda in the top of a shoebox or a large roasting pan and set on the counter. For other money-saving and odor-busting hints, send for my pamphlet. If you’d like one, send a long, stamped (70 cents), self-addressed envelope and $5 to: Heloise’s Baking Soda Hints and Recipes, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Or visit my website, www.Heloise.com, to order online and find more frugality, facts and fun!

– Heloise

King Features Syndicate Inc.

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