Understanding Indoor Air Quality Issues and Monitoring
Today, workplace safety is one of the major concerns for most employees. Among others, indoor air quality (or IAQ) is a primary health and safety concern. The following lines address the major concerns related to IAQ and the need for monitoring.
Issues Related to IAQ:
Some common issues associated with indoor air quality include:
- Increase in time spent indoor and number of building occupants
- Contamination caused due to chemicals, construction materials, fibreglass, glues, particle boards, paints, etc
- Inadequate or improper maintenance of ventilation and heating systems
Common Examples of Indoor Air Contaminants:
- Fibreglass, dust, gases including formaldehyde and asbestos from building materials
- Body odors, perfume, Carbon dioxide (CO2) and tobacco smoke from building occupants
- Dust mites from foam chair cushions, carpets and fabrics
- Odors, gases and vapors as off-gas emission from paints, carpets and furniture
- Ozone from electrostatic air cleaners, photocopiers and electric motors
- Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and toxic vapors from solvents, workplace cleansers, glues, disinfectants and pesticides
- Bacteria, fungi, microbial contaminants and molds from condensate pans, damp areas and stagnant water
Symptoms that Indicate Poor IAQ:
People continuously breathing in poor indoor air quality show the symptoms listed below:
- Shortness of breath
- Sinus congestion
- Allergies and hypersensitivity
- Sneezing and coughing
- Irritation and dryness of the skin, throat, nose and eyes
Only after working for several hours do people develop these symptoms.
All the points discussed above show how important IAQ monitoring is. if IAQ is a major concern for you at your workplace or residential area, then you must resort to the services of a specialist consulting company that will undertake regular surveys of your building. The consulting company should also be able to provide quality impartial health and safety compliance services and Occupational Health & Safety and Environmental monitoring solutions.