Everything You Need to Know About IAQ

Outdoor air pollution is increasingly pervasive in our everyday lives. We inhale second-hand cigarette smoke, smell car exhaust fumes and receive air quality advice from local weather reports and new mobile applications. We know outdoor air pollution is harmful, but many of us don’t focus on the importance of indoor air quality and the impact it has on our lives. Indoor air quality (IAQ), is just as vital to our everyday lives and health, and the pollutants found indoors should concern us equally.

 

Why Is Indoor Air Quality Important?

Indoor Air Quality refers to the quality of air within buildings and enclosed spaces. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), people spend almost 93% of their life indoors; be it home, the office, school, or hospital. Shouldn’t we pay attention to the quality of air we breathe 93% of the time? No wonder the EPA states that the “indoor environment is two to five times more toxic than our outdoor environment, and in some cases, these can exceed 100 times that of outdoor levels of the same pollutants”. This statistic compels us to think about the significance of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ).

 

What Affects Indoor Air Quality?

Poor indoor air quality can arise from a number of factors; the top five pollutants are listed below: 

  • Radon – forms as the result of uranium in soil or rock breaking down; it can also be released from building materials, such as granite.
  • Mold – grows as a result of high indoor humidity and is known to be common in schools and office buildings.
  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) – or organic chemicals emitted as gases from products or processes, can come from products like cleaning agents, disinfectants, air fresheners, dehumidifiers, carpet, flooring material, and even furnishings.
  • Carbon Monoxide (CO) – arises from generators, poorly maintained boilers or furnaces, automobile exhaust from nearby idling vehicles, and more.
  • Dust Particles & Particulate Matter (PM) – can be produced by lead-based paint, vacuuming, fireplaces, cigarette smoke, or other activities.
 
 
 

How to Measure Indoor Air Quality & Improve IAQ?

To keep your indoor environment safe, you need to track the real-time levels of certain key IAQ parameters. IAQ parameters that have been identified by EPA, ASHRAE and LEED to be important include particulate matter (PM), carbon monoxide, VOCs, Formaldehyde, CO2 , Humidity and Temperature. To accurately track all these parameters, it’s necessary to install an indoor air quality sensor to monitor your IAQ level in real-time and take action when air quality is below recommended levels.

 

The Best Technology for Measuring and Improving Indoor Air Quality

Monitair’s AirMeter 100 is an award-winning air monitoring device that can measure Radon, CO2 , TVOC, Temperature, Relative Humidity, Air Pressure and Relative Light Intensity. The AirMeter can be mounted anywhere inside your building – including offices, retail stores, health centers, schools and residential properties. It provides you access to a real-time dashboard, with actionable insights, alerts, monthly reports.

The Airmeter 100 also has a Virus Risk Indicator, which uses data from core sensors that track CO2, humidity, and temperature into a custom-developed algorithm that calculates the risk of airborne virus spread in an indoor space. The Virus Risk Indicator evaluates four factors that have direct relationships with indoor airborne virus spread and then assigns a ranked risk level ranging from 1 to 10.

If your building’s occupants are complaining of poor air quality at work, consider indoor air quality monitoring as part of a long-term strategy for maintaining a healthy building.
Tracking IAQ data over time to improve indoor air quality is a beneficial approach to:

  • Understand and evaluate your building’s current indoor air quality
  • Take targeted action to reduce pollutants and quickly fix ventilation issues in areas with poor indoor air quality
  • Stay within desirable indoor air quality parameters by utilizing alerts and notifications
  • Reassure occupants and other stakeholders that the indoor air is safe by sharing dashboard data as needed
 
 

Want to check your building’s indoor air quality before re-opening? Contact Monitair to get up and running with an indoor air quality monitoring system immediately. We will evaluate your indoor air quality and provide the most effective solution to clean your facility’s indoor air.