Maximizing Your HVAC System to Work Against Airborne Viruses and Bacteria

HVAC in rooftop

Maximizing Your HVAC System to Work Against Airborne Viruses and Bacteria

Now more than ever, people have become conscious about hygiene and sanitation. When the coronavirus pandemic swept throughout the world, billions of people suddenly got on the cleanliness bandwagon in hopes of keeping the deadly virus at bay.

The World Health Organization (WHO), along with medical and health experts, all agree that the primary way to fight the virus is to observe proper hygiene at all times. This means keeping your hands clean by constantly washing them and not touching your face.

Social distancing and home quarantines were also highly recommended methods to help flatten the curve.

States Now Preparing to Reopen

Now, states are evaluating and seriously considering reopening certain facilities to help folks ease into some semblance of normalcy, albeit a new one. For instance, the courts all over the nation are expecting to resume some of their services within the next month. Although it won’t be fully operational at this time, they have a four-phase plan to gradually get back into the swing of things despite the present circumstances.

In preparation for the reopenings, how do you ensure that your facilities are safe? While there is no sufficient evidence that COVID-19 is airborne nor aerosol, other airborne viruses and bacteria should still be taken into consideration since you wouldn’t want your immune system compromised by other diseases.

Other than constant handwashing, wearing protective gear, and social distancing, sanitizing your surroundings is also one of the best ways of protecting your health. This goes beyond just periodically wiping high-contact surfaces. You also need to think of the quality of air in your building or facility.

The American Society for Heating, Refrigerating, and Airconditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) published a few guidelines in dealing with COVID-19. This will prove helpful in keeping the air clean in your property.

  • Supply clean air to all occupants
  • Contain or exhaust contaminated air outdoors
  • Dilute air in a space with filtered outdoor air
  • Clean the air inside an area

Based on these, we recommend you consider HVAC building commissioning for the following:

1. Bring in outside air to your building and facility

No filter is proven to remove any airborne particles in the air. Your best bet is to dilute indoor contaminants using outdoor air.

Some systems can control the outdoor airflow as needed. You may ask your HVAC system provider to turn off the demand control ventilation temporarily until things get better.

One other option is to purge your property by bringing in more outdoor air than needed. Consult with your vendor or engineering consultant on how to best go about it.

2. Turn your ultraviolet lights on

HVAC systems that have ultraviolet lamps could help rid the room of airborne bacteria and viruses. The ultraviolet germicidal irradiation cleaners from certain HVAC systems could destroy and eliminate unwanted particles in the air. If your units have UV lamps, it would be a good idea to turn them on now.

3. Strictly observe HVAC maintenance to maximize the delivery of clean air

HVAC maintenance

Proper HVAC maintenance should be strictly observed at this time and should never be compromised. Replace old filters and clean your vents well to prevent triggering any underlying respiratory illness especially to those who are more susceptible to it.

If you are employing the services of professionals, make sure all parties follow the proper building maintenance safety protocols in light of the pandemic.

4. Stay informed at all times

The wisest decisions are usually the well-informed ones. Make sure you are connected to reliable sources of information so that you can take on the task at hand more appropriately, bringing up your chances of success.

While there is still no surefire way of defeating the coronavirus, it will do your tenants and occupants wonders if you can provide them with clean air to breathe confidently and fearlessly.

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