What is Indoor Air Quality?
Indoor air quality (IAQ) refers to air conditions around and inside buildings and facilities, including but not limited to commercial offices, healthcare facilities, hotels, restaurants, event venues, and more. Indoor air quality is a component of indoor environmental quality (IEQ), including other physical and psychological aspects of life indoors, such as thermal comfort, acoustics, lighting, and visual quality. By taking a closer look at your indoor air quality and HVAC systems, you can offer a safer and healthier indoor environment for your customers and employees.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, facility managers and building owners are considering the relationship between indoor air quality, HVAC systems, and occupational health. Microbial contaminants like bacteria and mold, radon, VOCs, particulates, and gases such as radon, can all affect the indoor air that travels through your building. OSHA reports that inadequate HVAC maintenance is a significant cause of poor IAQ, which can cause tiredness, headaches, mental fatigue, throat irritation, skin rashes, and more.
Chronic health issues such as asthma are often linked to HVAC systems and IAQ. Long-term exposure to certain contaminants may even lead to life-threatening illnesses, such as heart disease and lung cancer.
According to the EPA, 50% of all medical conditions are aggravated or caused by poor IAQ.
The U.S. Department of Energy reports that poor IAQ costs businesses up to $168 billion annually, with absenteeism and medical care contributing to the bill.