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Indoor Air Quality in the Office: Importance and Maintenance Tips

an HVAC Technician showing a thunbs upIndoor air quality is important in an office environment because it can affect the well-being, comfort, health and productivity of everyone in the workplace.

If you have pollutants in the office or if your office has poor air quality, the confined space and number of people there can increase the risk of people getting sick, which can negatively impact business operations. It can also equate to costly medical care.

This is why air conditioning contractors here in Sydney are working closely with businesses to maintain and promote good indoor quality in workspaces.

Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems play a major role in providing office occupants with good indoor air, but only if designed, maintained and operated properly. If you haven’t gotten around to cleaning or upgrading your HVAC system, now is the time to do so.

Aside from making sure that your workplace has a reliable and well-maintained HVAC system in place, here are the other things you and your employees can do to make sure you have good indoor air quality in the office.

Keep pests away by storing food properly

Food left out is a pest magnet. The same goes for dirty dishware. Some kinds of food, if left unrefrigerated, can spoil quickly and produce an unpleasant smell. Perishable food items should never be stored on shelves or in desks.

It is advisable to use airtight containers and clean refrigerators regularly to discourage pests and prevent odours. You should wash used plates, mugs and eating utensils immediately. You should also keep clean and sanitise the office pantry to keep pests away.

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Avoid blocking supply vents or air grilles

Look around your office and check to see if there is anything blocking supply vents or return air grilles, such as boxes, cabinets, and other materials. Blocked vents may result in an imbalance in the HVAC system and may affect the ventilation (and therefore indoor air quality) of a neighbouring office.

Make sure occupants comply with the office and building policy

Many office buildings have a designated area for smoking as well as restrictions on using electronic cigarettes indoors. You should follow these policies strictly to prevent exposure to indoor air contaminants such as nicotine and e-cig fragrance and flavour additives.

Clean up spills properly and report leaks immediately

Standing water and moisture create the perfect conditions for microorganisms such as fungi and moulds to grow. These microbes can affect the health of people in the workplace. Mould spores, for example, can trigger allergic reactions such as swollen airways, sneezing, and even asthma-like attacks.

Dispose of rubbish properly and immediately

Rubbish should be disposed of in appropriate containers that are regularly emptied and cleaned out. This will not only keep odours at bay but also prevent the growth of bacteria and biological contamination.

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