Are You Following The 4 Key ASHRAE Guidelines To Improve Indoor Air Quality
Until COVID-19 kicked indoor air quality (IAQ) into a starring position, it had been banished to the bench for years. As a building manager, engineer, or HVAC contractor, you may have included it on your priority list, but probably near the bottom.
Then, the news started mentioning COVID-19 superspreader events like those associated with a choir practice in Skagit County, Washington, air conditioning in Guangzhou, China, and a spinning class in Hamilton, Ontario. Suddenly, the role that building IAQ could play in COVID-19 transmission became clear. The EPA recognized that the COVID-19 virus might remain airborne for longer times and further distances than originally thought. And the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) issued guidelines in four main areas, including ventilation and filtration, to help combat COVID-19.
Based on the ASHRAE guidelines, Sunbelt Rentals has developed The IAQ Guide: Meeting ASHRAE Guidelines During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond. The IAQ Guide provides information on the ASHRAE guidelines, specific recommendations for healthcare, and temporary solutions to implement until you can upgrade your permanent system. Also, we’ve included tips to ensure your HVAC equipment continues to operate optimally and you have the information to make solid decisions about IAQ.
The first step is to make certain you’ve implemented the 4 key ASHRAE guidelines:
Increased outside air used by your HVAC system
Installed filters with MERV ratings of at least 13
Installed UVC lighting in duct for disinfection
Maintained relative humidity between 40% and 60%
If you haven’t taken these steps yet, be sure to read the IAQ Guide for suggestions. Even if you’ve already tackled the guidelines, the IAQ Guide contains additional recommendations you may find useful as you move forward.
These aren’t just steps to follow during COVID-19. There’s a new emphasis on maintaining buildings for the wellbeing of occupants. COVID-19 is just one in a long line of serious health impacts that result from poor IAQ – including Legionnaires’ Disease, carbon monoxide poisoning, and asbestos exposure. Less critical but more widespread impacts include increased allergy and asthma symptoms, colds and other infectious diseases, and sick building syndrome due to elevated levels of indoor pollutants.
Download the IAQ Guide: Meeting ASHRAE Guidelines During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond to learn how your organization can mitigate the risk of COVID-19 and other IAQ issues with cost-effective, engineered solutions.
For immediate questions on IAQ and HVAC systems, contact us today at 866-510-4777 or click here to read more about our IAQ solutions.