Actually, indoor air quality has always been important but perhaps COVID-19 has changed the way we think about, and prioritize the need for indoor air quality. As the country begins to reopen, commercial businesses with an eye on the continued health and wellness of their employee populations, have placed a renewed emphasis on ensuring the right equipment is in place for this.

The team at Tri-Tech Energy is often brought in by engineering companies to assist with the creation of an indoor air quality strategy. This work has included apartments, hotels, factories, and of course, our New Jersey Schools. Our team truly believes in the importance of good indoor air quality for students and will do whatever we can to support the safe return to school. In this article, we will discuss the importance of indoor air quality further, as well as different ways to achieve this in schools, other public buildings, and even at home. 

Indoor air quality (IAQ) management encompasses several factors related to the quality and cleanliness of the air, including:

  • Controlling and limiting air pollutants
  • Ensuring adequate distribution of outside air
  • Maintaining a comfortable temperature and appropriate humidity levels 

IAQ management is also vital for the health of students, teachers, and other school staff. Poor indoor air quality can aggravate allergies, trigger asthma, and can cause a range of health issues including headaches, fatigue, nausea and dizziness. 

Common factors that can affect the air quality in schools

There’s no one singular factor that causes schools to have good or bad indoor air quality. Instead, it’s a combination of many common factors, including:

  • Quality of the HVAC systems. Are the HVAC systems old? Are they well-maintained? Do they get serviced regularly? The answers to these questions will contribute to the air quality.
  • Proper ventilation. Having access to fresh outdoor air is essential, and schools should have proper ventilation systems that move an adequate supply of outdoor air into each classroom.
  • Mold and dampness. While it’s not always possible to prevent mold, there are HVAC systems that help you control moisture levels and prevent dampness from spreading. Mold can trigger health issues and exacerbate allergies and asthma. 
  • Other allergens. Things like cleaning products with harsh chemicals, pesticides, and car fumes can all affect the indoor air quality of your classroom. 

Regularly testing your classroom’s indoor air quality is essential, and so is maintaining your school’s HVAC systems. The health of your students and staff depends on it!

Can improving the air quality of your home boost your child’s academic performance? 

While the indoor air quality at your child’s school is important, equally important is your air quality at home. When children breathe clean, fresh air that doesn’t aggravate their respiratory systems, they’re able to concentrate and perform better in school. We recommend reducing your child’s exposure to airborne pollutants as much as possible by:

  • Regular cleaning and dusting. Dust build-up, along with other allergens, can cause breathing issues. 
  • Changing your HVAC filters regularly. When’s the last time you changed all your air filters? Check the manufacturer instructions and ensure you’re replacing them as required.
  • Installing a carbon monoxide detector. We all have smoke alarms in our homes, but not everyone has a carbon monoxide detector. Exposure to carbon monoxide can cause a variety of respiratory problems, so having a detector is essential.
  • Using an air purifier. Air purifiers are relatively cheap and they are absolutely worth the price – they trap harmful debris and other airborne pollutants so you don’t breathe them in, and they’re recommended for people with asthma.
  • Regulating humidity levels in your home. The higher your humidity levels, the more likely it is that mold will grow, which can directly cause breathing problems. We recommend keeping your home’s humidity level between 30 and 50 percent.

If you’d like to speak to a commercial heating and cooling contractor about the indoor air quality of your school, or if you’d like more information about how to improve your indoor air quality at home, please contact Tri-Tech Energy today. Our team is standing by and ready to help, we look forward to hearing from you. To learn more about our HVAC services, please visit our website at: