With rising Covid-19 numbers hitting the news headlines once again, the requirement for good ventilation in buildings and other confined spaces is becoming increasingly important again for businesses. Currently, ventilation for buildings is being revised to reflect lessons learned from Covid-19 at the beginning and the measures required to protect people moving forward.
At Aircon Group, we are experts when it comes to air conditioning and ventilation. With some additional advice from the National Association of Air Duct Specialists UK (NAADUK), who are an association for qualified ventilation ductwork maintenance technicians, we were able to put together a useful guide on how to ensure you have a good ventilation system.
To start with, there is a worldwide consensus that improving ventilation is one of the most effective ways to reduce the transmission of Covid-19. However, all vents and ductwork must be clean to ensure this is the case.
In the early stages of the design process of any system, designers should be creating systems with hygiene in mind and ensuring there is access to parts of the system. Loft hatches should be big enough so staff can get in and clean the systems.
To identify poor ventilation, it is a useful indicator to measure the levels of CO2 in a room. The levels of CO2 decrease as ventilation increases, therefore the number of people at risk of infection reduces significantly.
How to achieve good ventilation hygiene
Good ventilation hygiene isn’t just about duct cleaning, it is determined by many other factors.
To start with, it is vitally important that the building design is fit for purpose, that there is adequate space for access to services requiring maintenance, and service points are located away from occupied areas.
When it comes to system design, the correct components need to be selected and the system must be designed with hygiene cleaning in mind. When installing a system, ductwork access doors must be installed to the correct sizes and orientation and the system must be commissioned to achieve design performance.
Advantages of ventilation system cleaning
Ventilation system cleaning is a proven engineering solution to increase ventilation rates and reduce operational costs. Inspecting ductwork annually costs significantly less than air cleaning alternatives, such as Hepa filters or UV systems which are costly to replace.
Ventilation system maintenance is also important for insurance purposes and health and safety in the workplace to ensure staff wellbeing is increased to maximum.
By maximising ventilation in a building, the risk of transmission of Covid-19 will be significantly reduced. However, if the grills and ductwork are not cleaned thoroughly and appropriately, there is a longer exposure time to Covid-19 as it has the chance to circle the room. Therefore, the grills must be hoovered regularly.
To ensure your system is adequately clean, extract ductwork components such as egg crate grilles, dampers and flexible ducts that can end up completely blocked. When totally blocked, this can cause the air to swirl inside the buildings, generate dead spots with stagnant air, and ultimately increase the spread of viruses including Covid-19.
Cleaning of extract systems will ensure room air flow patterns are maintained and contaminated air is removed from the transmission zone as quickly as possible.
For more information on ventilation systems and how they can benefit your business during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, give us a call on 01642 249026 (North East office) or 01709 367001 (Yorkshire office).