Cost to Install a CO Detector – 2021

| Last Updated: August 24, 2021

National Average Improvement and Repair Cost







$ 90

$ 45

Would you do this project? According to our survey, 62% of respondents preferred DIY compared to hiring a pro.

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The average price to Install a CO Detector noted above is cost data to compare a contractor’s estimate with doing it yourself.

How much is a CO detector installed? A handyman charges $90 to install a CO detector vs. doing it yourself for $45 and saving 52 percent.

Carbon monoxide is an elusive gas that’s difficult to detect because it’s colorless, odorless, and tasteless, which is why it’s called the silent killer. Thousands of people die or become sick each year from the gas that can form when a furnace or appliance that runs on natural gas or other fossil fuel fails to fully burn the fuel. A homeowner’s best line of defense is installing a CO (carbon monoxide) alarm that measures the amount of gas in the air and sounds an alarm before it reaches a dangerous level.

The price of a CO alarm varies based on the features included, such as voice alarms, remote controls, silence buttons, or a combined smoke alarm. A battery-powered device with a backlit digital display lets you read the CO level in the dark, a handy feature during a power outage. A plug-in device that works in any standard electrical outlet is convenient to use anywhere in the house and usually includes a 9-volt battery for protection during a short-term power outage.

One detector isn’t enough for a house, one should be installed on each level of your house, in the hall near the bedrooms, and wherever most family members spend a lot of time. Install it on a wall so it’s eye level at least 15 feet away from cooking or heating appliances to prevent a false alarm. Don’t install one on the ceiling, next to doors or windows, behind furniture or draperies, or near fuel-burning appliances.

To install a battery-powered unit in the ceiling or wall, a handyman will charge $90, which includes the alarm and the labor. You but you can buy one for $45 and install it yourself, saving 50 percent.

Now you know the average cost to install a CO detector, which includes the labor and material, and what’s involved, so you can decide to do it yourself or hire a contractor. 

Welcome! We hope you’ll find the job costs of home improvement projects useful when you’re deciding whether to do a job yourself vs. hire a contractor. We’re the authors of 20 home improvement books, most notably Home Improvement for Dummies©, Bathroom Remodeling for Dummies©, Carpentry for Dummies©, Plumbing for Dummies©, and Painting and Wallpapering for Dummies©. Our most recent book Fix It and Flip It is in its second edition. We’ve appeared as home improvement experts on television programs such as CNN, Dateline, the Today Show, HGTV and many others.