How to define indoor air quality remains unclear, but understanding how it may impact your comfort and health is a serious concern and should be acknowledged. The presence of airborne pollutants in the workplace may affect some or everyone, one way or the other. The effects may be unnoticeable at some point, or they may become prevalent, but you should keep a close watch on the possible signs just the same. That way, you can be proactive in improving your indoor air.
There is no shortcut to eliminating the possible harmful contaminants that fly around within your working atmosphere. It is a holistic process of keeping the entire office clean, investing in good quality air purifiers, and ultimately, changing your filters regularly. For your heating and cooling requirements, seek top-notch professional service to ensure everything is in order. It is not just about the indoor air quality, after all. The upkeep of your systems may also impact your comfort and, significantly, your budget. If you need help determining if they affect your indoor air quality and require a thorough inspection of your units, click here.
But before we go far in the process of elimination, let us first single out some signs and symptoms that say you have poor indoor air quality. That’s the main point of this article in the first place.
- Frequent allergy episodes or asthma attacks. Those who are most susceptible to the harmful effects of poor indoor air quality are the ones who are vulnerable due to existing conditions, like asthma and allergic reactions. If someone with those conditions gets sick more often, do not dismiss it by attributing it to weather changes. It may well be a sensitive reaction to the presence of irritants in the office.
- New or unusual symptoms of respiratory trouble. Indoor air pollutants may go beyond the usual dust and dirt build-up. At times, toxic chemicals may be present, resulting in unusual fevers, chills, headaches, nausea, and vomiting that come with breathing difficulty. You must be concerned, as they are signs that you are facing a much bigger issue than a filthy air filter. Work to eliminate the presence of asbestos, mould spores and other harmful chemicals at all costs and as soon as possible. They could potentially cause a significant health concern that may affect any of your staff, hurting your workforce in the process.
- Skin dryness and irritation. If you cannot associate complaints of dry skin, redness, and rashes with anything, consider it a warning sign of poor indoor air quality. When the pollutants latch to the skin, they may cause such symptoms by blocking the regular flow of nutrients.
- Unpleasant odour. Stagnant air may cause unwanted scents, which could be disturbing over time. Apart from blockages in your vents and ducts or dust and dirt build-up in your heating and cooling systems, foul odours may also come from chemical contaminants. That’s why you should pay attention to it very quickly. If unpleasant smells fly around the interiors or even if familiar scents linger, you should have your system checked immediately for possible issues.
- Inconsistent heating and cooling. If there are hot and cold spots in the office, it is a sign that air is not flowing properly, causing the indoor air quality to suffer. Some of the possible issues you may need to address with your HVAC system include leaking fluids, blocked registers, or dirty air filters.
Beyond indoor air quality
Although your indoor air quality is a top concern, there are other important reasons to keep a well-maintained HVAC system. Indeed, it is not just an issue of indoor air quality or even health and safety in the workplace. It can also be about:
- Saving money. Preventive maintenance helps you maximise the value of your heating and cooling systems. Their longevity means a lot to your finances because investing in new units or even repairing them may cost a significant amount of money. Faulty systems also let you spend a considerable sum on your energy bills. If everything about your unit is working properly, it will work more efficiently, using less energy, resulting in lower utility bills.
- Helping the environment. If you make your workplace energy-efficient, you are also reducing your carbon footprints that hurt Mother Earth. Lower energy requirements mean you are using less fuel to run the office, which is generally good for the planet. If you are worried about your work operation’s impact on the environment, tending to your HVAC’s health is one thing to look into.
- Improving comfort in the workplace. When your HVAC system is maintained correctly, it will distribute warm or cool air evenly, efficiently, and steadily. That means your employees get their fair share of a clean and comfortable atmosphere, allowing them to become productive in their duties. A comfortable workplace is a conducive one. It harnesses creativity and productivity among the workers. It also helps promote a positive environment that everyone enjoys.
HVAC maintenance should never be delayed. Instead, schedule a visit from your trusted contractor periodically to ensure that your system is working all the time. When skilled professionals perform thorough inspection and routine maintenance of your unit, he will be able to seal off minor troubles so they do not balloon into major and costly breakdowns. Always keep your dependable HVAC contractor within reach to keep an energy-efficient system that is always in excellent working condition. No amount of money could equate to your peace of mind. Bet you know that!
It may feel cosy and comfortable to be enclosed in a tight space, protected against the cold during the winter months while you try to be productive at work, but beware. Indoor allergens may permeate your workplace and cause serious respiratory troubles, and they are no laughing matter. If you notice any of the signs and symptoms above and experience them shortly after being exposed to an enclosed space, it would be safe to impress that your indoor air quality is compromised.