Indoor Air Quality Part 1: Why Should You Care?
Ask yourself: how often does at least one of the following conditions or tasks exist on a restoration job?
  • Contamination (sewer, mold, or flooding)
  • Drying carpet or carpet and pad in place or floating carpet
  • Structural cavity drying
  • Customers who request air filtration
  • Customers who are concerned about allergies
  • Immuno-compromised individuals or other at-risk occupants
The answer is of course every job has at least one of these conditions. This is why controlling dust, soot, and airborne bacterial contamination with airscrubbers or air filtration devices (AFDs) is very nearly the de facto standard for indoor environmental control.
Here’s how controlling the risks associated with indoor air quality benefits your customers, your staff, and you:

For your occupants

An air scrubber helps create a cleaner, safer indoor environment for occupants both during the restoration work and after it is done. Occupants who are able to re-enter a previously damaged building without visual, odor, or health complaints are likely to be satisfied with your work. Using an air scrubber on a job is a cost-effective way to increase the quality and value of the service you offer to your customers.

For your technicians

Using an air scrubber on the job also reduces the risk for those working on the job. In many cases, an air scrubber may be much more effective, comfortable, and less expensive than requiring the use of respirators. An air scrubber is a short-term and long-term investment in the health and productivity of the people who do the work of restoration.

Legal implications

An AFD not only addresses indoor air quality concerns while the work is being performed, it can also help limit your legal exposure long after the job is done. This is especially true with water damage and mold contamination. Sometimes a restored structure develops a problem with IAQ due to a pre-existing condition or subsequent damage that is beyond the scope of your company's responsibility. By using an AFD on every job, you are taking an extra step to minimize unintended liability and complications that affect indoor air quality and occupant health.

Increase safety and productivity

Improving IAQ also benefits equipment performance and quality of work. For instance, in water damage restoration an air scrubber captures dirt, dust, and debris that might otherwise coat dehumidifier coils (thereby decreasing water removal efficiency) and/or clog airmover intake vents (thereby reducing airflow). An air scrubber helps keep your equipment clean so that it can perform at its best.

These are the “big picture” reasons controlling indoor air quality is critical to the successful restoration of the indoor environment. In our next installment, we’ll take a look at specific types of airborne contamination and how proper AFD setup can help you successfully (and profitably) manage indoor air quality on every job.

Continue reading "Indoor Air Quality Part 2."