As COVID-19 continues its impact across the United States, building personnel are brainstorming creative solutions to combat the virus in their facilities so that students, teachers, residents, patients, and staff can co-exists more safely.
Research suggests that improving filtration via heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) can reduce the airborne particles of COVID-19, thus improving air quality and making facilities safer.
The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recently released it’s “Core Recommendations for Reducing Airborne Infections Aerosol Exposure.” In these recommendations are steps to maintaining proper ventilation, filtration, and air cleaning in high-occupancy buildings, including maintaining minimum outdoor airflow rates, improving HVAC filters and air cleaners, and utilizing standalone air filters and cleaners for an added level of filtration.
With HVAC systems, small improvements can have a large impact. In addition to physical distancing and wearing masks, the CDC recommends improving air quality in buildings by:
- Increasing the incorporation of outdoor air by opening windows and doors when weather permits.
- Opening outdoor air dampers on HVAC systems beyond their minimum settings.
- Using fans to help with the outdoor air circulation.
- Making sure air filtration systems are updated and being used properly.
- Consider running HVAC systems at maximum outdoor air flow a couple hours before the building is to be occupied.
With dedication to improving this one aspect of a building, facilities managers and staff can invest in the safety of their occupants.
TEN has been making improvements for a number of School Districts. Give us a call or send us an e-mail. We are happy to discuss options with you.