Protecting our Children from Airborne Pathogens Adding increased levels of fresh air and cleaning recirculated air not only benefits children, but provides a safer, healthier, and more productive indoor environment for teachers and staff.
School systems in all types of geographies trust Orderfilters.com and Filtration Group Products to provide a clean, safe and productive environment for our next generation and those teaching them. Regardless of the local climate, we have products to achieve the Indoor Air Quality levels needed by the students and Total Cost of Ownership demanded by the school board.
Statistics state that at least 50% of our nation’s 115,000 schools have been indoor air quality issues. Proper ventilation and maintenance throughout the school year is critical for student and staff health concerns. Lack of proper air filtration is one of the leading causes for illness, lack of concentration and fatigue resulting in lower grades and a higher amount of missed days.
Make Indoor Air Quality in your school a priority today and keep students and teachers in the classroom by selecting the right FILTER AND MAINTENANCE PROGRAM.
Proven Indoor Air Hygiene Solutions for K-12 Schools SAFER | HEALTHIER | MORE PRODUCTIVE
Protecting our Children from Airborne Pathogens Recent events have taught us that providing clean, fresh, conditioned air into classrooms is critical.
Parents must feel confident of our children’s safety as they return to school. Adding increased levels of fresh air and cleaning recirculated air not only benefits children, but provides a safer, healthier, and more productive indoor environment for teachers and staff.
Infection control was likely not considered a priority when the HVAC systems in most schools were designed. However, when properly configured with the correct amount of outdoor air, adding supplemental localized air purifiers and following protocols to upgrade and replace contaminated filters every 3 months can lead to significant reductions in the spread of airborne pathogens. Our indoor air hygiene experts have created a helpful guide to re-opening schools and keeping students safe after re-open.
Please reach out to ask any questions or contact us to assess your indoor air hygiene. By introducing increased levels of fresh outdoor air into the school, stale, potentially pathogen-laden air is exhausted out. By continually changing the air within the school, you can dramatically reduce the number of pathogens in the air. Air Hygiene Plays a Role In Protecting Students And Faculty Leading agencies such as:
ASHRAE (American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers), WHO (World Health Organization), REHVA (The Federation of European Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Associations).
They have all recommended increased fresh air ventilation to increase the indoor air quality of building spaces. Increase in Outdoor Air Intake Vital to Decreasing Airborne Pathogens
- Avoid airborne contaminant recirculation
- Maintain proper humidity levels to prohibit virus, bacteria and mold reproduction and function
- Dilute VOC’s, CO2 and other furniture and building material off-gas
- Provide make-up air for exhaust from kitchens, bathrooms, and other operations within the school
Additional Procedures Needed to Protect Children and Teachers
STEP 1: Flush your system ASHRAE recommends you review HVAC programming to provide flushing two hours before and post occupancies. This includes operating the exhaust fans as well as opening the outside air dampers. For buildings without the capacity to treat large quantities of outside air and when outside air conditions are moderate, open all windows for a minimum of two hours before reoccupation.
STEP 2: Inspect your current HVAC Filtration System Have my filters been maintained? Do I need to change them more regularly? Do my filters seal into their holding frames or tracks? A filter only works when it is sealed properly eliminating bypass. Determine your current filter efficiency. This is typically listed as a MERV rating.
STEP 3: Upgrade to the optimal filter Upgrade efficiency to MERV 13 or higher which will capture more pathogens.
STEP 4: Add localized air purifiers and dehumidifiers Consider adding localized, stand-alone air purifiers and dehumidifiers in high-traffic and commonly occupied areas to help prevent the spread of bacteria and virus.
STEP 5: Implement best practices for changing out your filters Change out your filters every 3 months for optimal filtration. Ensure maintenance staff are wearing the appropriate PPE when changing filters. Dispose of dirty filters in sealed bags and avoid compacting if possible.
STEP 6: Consider upgrading your HVAC system to bring in conditioned fresh, outside air Avoid airborne contaminant recirculation. Maintain proper humidity levels to prohibit virus, bacteria and mold reproduction and function.
Examples of Common Upgrade Solutions:
Enduro-Pleat® MERV 8/8A Pleated Air Filter (9)The Aerostar® MERV 8/8A Enduro-Pleat® is engineered for the harshest HVAC environments and are constructed with stronger components
FP-V-Bank Mini Pleat Filter (12”) (9)ASHRAE states: “MERV 13 filters are efficient at trapping viruses, including COVID-19”. Upgrade your MERV 8 prefilters to MERV 13 without changing your fan or redesigning your filter rack! Our MERV 13 pleats are high capacity with minimum restriction to airflow and has a 30% higher dust holding capacity, provides exceptional MERV 13 efficiency and peace of mind. Each MERV…
GeoPleats (9)GeoPleat (box style or with single header) The new Geo Mini-Pleat utilizes advanced pleating technology which increases the media area per filter, reducing resistance to air flow and maximizing service life. The Geo Mini-Pleat is designed to perform with VFDs—bag filters are not. Upgrade today and see dramatic results in air flow!
MERV 13 Green Pleat Air Filter (9)ASHRAE states: “MERV 13 filters are efficient at trapping viruses, including COVID-19”. Upgrade your MERV 8 prefilters to MERV 13 without changing your fan or redesigning your filter rack! Our MERV 13 pleats are high capacity with minimum restriction to airflow and has a 30% higher dust holding capacity, provides exceptional MERV 13 efficiency and peace of mind. Each MERV…
Pathogens such as the coronavirus are transmitted through the air on carriers such as water droplets or dust particles. When someone who is infected coughs, sneezes, or even breaths, there are moisture droplets which become airborne and become the carrier of the virus. Small 0.3-1.0 micron particles are light enough to remain airborne for significant amounts of time and can contribute to the spread of the disease to others at a much greater distance. All HVAC filters remove a range of particles and different filters have different ratings for this purpose. This is referred to as the MERV rating which stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. This is a scale from 1 to 16 with filters rated as MERV 1 capturing the least number of particles and MERV 16 filters capturing close to all the particles in the air. Choosing a filter with the correct MERV rating can have a dramatic impact on reducing the number of viral particles in the air, and therefore the chances of spreading airborne infectious diseases within your facility.
How Filters Help Stop The Spread of Infectious Diseases 1 Source: HVAC filtration for controlling infectious airborne disease transmission in indoor environments: Predicting risk reductions and operational costs by Parham Azimi and Brent Stephens, 2013 – ASHRAE Position Document on Infectious Aerosols April 14, 2020