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commercial hvac and indoor air quality greater comfort blog

Commercial HVAC & Allergies: Here’s the Connection

You may think of Spring as the season with the worst allergies, but are people in your office or the facility you manage complaining about allergies right now? 

Let’s uncover 4 things you should know about in terms of allergies and your facility’s heating and cooling system.

1. Know the culprits

The EPA says indoor air is at least 2 to 5 times more polluted than outside…and that’s why one of the best ways to combat allergies for those who spend a lot of time indoors is actually indoor air quality!

Be sure you (or others working for you) know what some of the underlying issues are that can make allergies worse.

Recall that your indoor air goes through your HVAC system and ductwork—so that’s going to be a large piece of the puzzle you’re going to want to explore.

Here is just a few of the things that can be giving people issues in your building:

  • Dust mites
  • Pollen
  • Pet dander (yes, we love the office dog, too, but he can be a contributor to the problem)
  • Smog
  • Volatile organic compounds
  • Mold
  • Mildew
  • Chemicals
  • Bacteria and viruses

Even though you can’t completely eliminate these things in all cases, it helps to be aware of what’s likely contributing or worsening your problem (1).

2. Get your ductwork cleaned

Air ducts can be a place where dust can collect. What’s more is that ducts can become infested with rodents or other things like insects. If they are clogged with dust, debris, or any other materials, you can see how this can become a major problem.

When done the right way, duct cleaning can get rid of dust, dust mites, pollutants and all the other air pollutants and particles that can be worsening your air quality. (As a reminder, this is exactly why you do your regular tune-ups with Greater Comfort.)

3. Find ways to reduce and manage dust

Since dust is such a major problem—and can really add up in an office setting—do you best to prevent and get rid of dust. A few things you can do or hire someone to do:

  • Use mats in the entry ways of your building when possible.
  • Be sure your air purifier is working properly.
  • Use allergen-reducing fabrics on furniture when possible.
  • Keep areas clean and reduce clutter which can help reduce dust build-up.
  • Encourage regular vacuuming with high-efficiency particulate air vacuums.
  • Ask people not to groom their pets indoors.
  • Be sure those cleaning are using cloths that remove dust, not just move the dust. For example, microfiber cloths work well to do so. (2)

4. Prevention goes a long way with allergies

Remember, all of these steps you can take are going to help people who feel like they are suffering from allergies even though they are spending most of their time indoors.

Just like with other things in your building, prevention goes a long way with your indoor air quality.

Be sure you have your ventilation design is doing you favors. With the right design—one that should also reflect the number of occupants in your building—you will help to fight off air quality troubles.

Second, it seems obvious, but changing out your air filters and regular maintenance of your HVAC system are key in protecting and improving indoor air quality. After all, better airflow means better efficiency for your system! It’s not only going to make the air cleaner and more pure when your HVAC is regularly maintained and working efficiently, but it’s also going to cost less to give you greater output. You can see how both of things can really add up while extending the life of your facility’s system(s).

Greater Comfort is Here to Help You With Indoor Air Problems

With options like top-of-the-line air filters, humidity control systems, UV germicidal lights, we have the tools (and knowledge) to make your building’s air fresh and clean. Those are just a few of the things we can help you with to combat allergies and to also prevent people from getting sick.

Call the experts at Greater Comfort today to ensure that your air quality is as clean as possible this fall: 859-491-4915.

Sources:

  1. https://aristair.com/blog/allergies-and-duct-cleaning-whats-the-connection/
  2. https://www.tuffwrap.com/blog/dust-prevention-tips-tricks/
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