Why Indoor Air Quality Shouldn’t Be Forgotten in Cleaning Programs

July 27, 2017

Over the past decade, the importance of indoor air quality has become more publicized. On average, people spend 90% of their time indoors. Healthy indoor air is imperative to the overall well-being of building occupants. The air you breathe at work and at home can have a significant impact upon your health.

Facility managers are now being tasked with achieving healthy indoor air quality in the workplace. Research has demonstrated that exposure to VOCs exacerbates allergy and asthma symptoms and can cause dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and impaired thinking. Asthma and allergies have become a top reason for employee absenteeism. There are numerous studies that have concluded that poor indoor air quality can be directly linked to decreased worker productivity and increased absenteeism.

Therefore, it has become the responsibility of facility managers to find ways to improve air quality and create a healthier work environment. There are several effective ways to make indoor air quality a routine part of your facility’s cleaning program.

To achieve measurable results, a two-fold approach to tackling indoor air quality will be most effective. First, it is important to overhaul the standard processes for purchasing and using cleaning supplies and to use products and techniques that reduce the number of VOCs introduced into your air. Secondly, it is also imperative to focus on improving the air by using air purifiers and optimizing your facility’s ventilation.

Most commercially available cleaning products contain dozens of harsh chemicals that pose several serious health risks. Facility managers are faced with the challenge of keeping the facility clean without relying on commercial cleansers. Thankfully, numerous products have recently been introduced to the market that contain natural ingredients and that can still provide similar results to commercial cleansers without the harsh chemical ingredients. By changing products and techniques used to clean a facility, the overall quality of the air can be drastically improved.

Secondly, facilities managers need to work on improving a building’s ventilation and on purifying the air. Maintaining your current HVAC system will help keep a constant flow of fresh air circulating throughout the facility. Standalone air purification systems have also become an extremely effective solution. Alternatively, simply placing a HEPA air filter in existing HVAC systems drags down the efficiency of that very same system.

Commercial-grade air purifiers use sophisticated technology and HEPA filtration to rid indoor spaces of up to 99.97% of airborne contaminants, including VOCs, germs, allergens, and odors. These units can be placed in problem areas to address specific air quality issues, such as public restrooms. This provides a more complete solution to odors in those spaces and can serve as a gateway to air purification being introduced into other areas.

Help protect your workspace indoor air quality by directing the Facilities Manager to these helpful tips.