The Importance of Indoor Air Quality for Construction Workers

The air in an indoor environment can impact an individual’s well-being. Fresh air is important to everyone, indoors and outdoors. It is especially critical to make sure that indoor construction is performed under conditions that promote safe, fresh air because construction workers may experience a particular environment for long periods of time. Good indoor air quality includes a comfortable temperature and humidity, an adequate supply of fresh outdoor air, and firm, consistent management of impurities.

Reasons bad air occurs:

  • The building needs more ventilation
  • Heating and air conditioning equipment is faulty
  • Water damage exists from undiscovered leaks
  • Housekeeping procedures are inadequate
  • Dust control systems are not properly maintained

Some specific state and local regulations may apply, but below are general protective steps you can take to prevent poor air quality.

  • Walk through the building. Are there odors?
  • Measure the temperature and the humidity. The temperature should be set at 68 to 78 degrees, and the most comfortable humidity level is 30 to 60 percent.
  • Inspect ventilation and heating and air conditioning equipment; make sure the systems are running correctly.
  • Do you see leaks or water damage? Water left standing can become contaminated with unhealthy bacteria.
  • Prevent dirt from entering the building by using a series of walk-off mats.
  • Make sure dust control systems are maintained.
  • Perform regular maintenance of the HVAC system.
  • Dispose of garbage regularly.

There are a number of issues that can affect air quality, including inadequate ventilation, lack of thermostatic control, dust and airborne chemicals from pesticides and cleaning sprays. When the outside air is good, it may be appropriate to open the windows and use natural ventilation, but this is not always the case.

Pay special attention to the HVAC equipment. When the HVAC system is functioning correctly, it solves many bad air issues. It supplies a comfortable temperature, eliminates unpleasant odors, and disperses even allotments of outdoor air throughout the structure. Equipment should not be placed in front of ventilation points. This type of obstruction can alter patterns of airflow and prevent proper dissemination of air throughout the building.

It is important to make sure that the air quality remains adequate when construction workers are working on indoor projects, in order to protect their safety and well-being.

For more information on ways to improve indoor air quality, please check out this article from Comfy Home Corner: