As Ontario continues to experience COVID-19 outbreaks, TRI-AIR Systems is having our technicians discuss with the client some of the options that are available to help improve the building’s air quality and HVAC system performance.
- Where feasible, upgrading to a MERV13 or higher efficiency filter should be considered. Any filter upgrades should only be done after consulting an HVAC industry professional, as some commercial HVAC systems are not designed to accommodate the density of HEPA-grade filtration.
- In areas where there is poor ventilation or no centralized air filtration system, air scrubbers/filtration units with optional UVC disinfection should be considered.
- All air handling equipment and exhaust fans should be set up to have fans run 24/7 to maximize ventilation air changes and increase the building’s air filtration where practical and feasible.
- HVAC system air dampers should be inspected, lubricated, and adjustments made. Where necessary, repairs should be carried out or defective components replaced. Systems with BAS controlled dampers should be checked to ensure actuators and dampers are responding to BAS control signals/readings.
- Increasing ventilation can help diffuse infectious droplets more rapidly by increasing the system air changes and the amount of fresh air you bring into the building. This can be done by adjusting the economizer fresh air damper settings. Fresh air dampers should be set to maximize the outdoor air introduced into the building to reduce air recirculation where applicable and feasible. As required, air temperature readings should be taken to calculate the fresh air damper minimum setting % required and dampers adjusted accordingly.
- A simple way to increase ventilation is to open a window. This can increase airflow to maximize diffusion of infectious droplets and improve safety measures.
- If not installed, consider a UV Air Sterilization System. The UV lights are installed so that the air passing by the lights is sterilized. The lights can be installed in the supply or return air duct parallel to the airflow, which will maximize the air exposure time, resulting in a higher disinfectant rate. UV lights can also be installed in the air handling unit.
- The BAS system temperatures and humidity levels and ventilation should have trends set up in order to monitor on a continuous basis. This will allow for early intervention and action to be taken as issues arise and help maintain good indoor air quality.
- Where possible, the BAS systems sequence of operation should be tested regularly so that any issues can be addressed and action is taken to correct any problems.