The first hot days are the time when, after a long break, we start using air conditioners in our offices more and more intensively. Unfortunately, for many of us, pleasant cold is also a spectre of recurring diseases and allergies. However, air conditioning should not be afraid, but should be used properly and subject to systematic control.
The task of an air-conditioning system is to maintain optimal temperature, humidity and air quality composition. Air conditioners draw air from the rooms in which they are installed to cool and humidify them. Modern devices also make life easier for allergy sufferers and asthmatic patients. Equipped with plasma filters, they purify the air from dust and mites and prevent the spread of bacteria harmful to health. They are also an effective barrier separating rooms from allergens outside - pollen from flowers, trees and grasses. So the air-conditioning system should work perfectly in office buildings, so why is it commonly believed that this is a habitat for disease?
Are you allergic to work?
The efficiency of air conditioning systems depends primarily on their correct operation and regular hygienic inspections.
People working in such conditions have continuous mucosal inflammation, chronic pharyngitis, laryngitis and bronchitis, headaches and dizziness, are irritated and have problems with concentration. Unfortunately, if 30% of the workers have such ailments, it means that they stay in the so-called sick building, which in the terminology of Western countries has even had its own term - Sick Building Syndrome.
Clean and fresh air
One of the conditions for maintaining high air quality inside a building is its regular replacement. When using the simplest way of ventilation, i.e. ventilation by opening the window, remember that it is not effective if the depth of the room is greater than 8 meters. Moreover, a temporary breeze from the outside only gives the illusion that we are breathing clean, healthy and fresh air.
According to the European Environment Agency, Poland has had the most polluted air in the European Union for years. The best way to reduce the concentration of contaminants coming from outside is to ventilate, filter and control humidity. Well maintained and efficient air conditioning gives such possibilities. The device not only provides a sense of comfort, but also produces clean, healthy and fresh air, even in the most unfavourable outdoor conditions.
Temperature under control
For the health, comfort and efficiency of employees, it is also important that air conditioning is set to the right temperature - 20 ÷ 22°C in winter and 23 ÷ 26°C in summer. Too low lengthens the reaction time and makes concentration difficult. In turn, too high not only dries the skin and mucous membranes, but also shortens the time of reaction, negatively affects its quality and contributes to the number of mistakes made. In summer, the difference between the temperature in the building and the outside temperature is also important - it should not be greater than 5-7°C. Too much amplitude of temperatures between rooms and external conditions weakens the body's defense against infections and colds.
Under constant supervision of specialists
The first signal that the air conditioner is contaminated is the unpleasant odour coming from the unit. In order to counteract this, filters should be replaced regularly and ventilation ducts should be disinfected. Many people try to do maintenance on their own using the wrong chemicals. Their vapours can be very harmful to the health of people indoors. Therefore, all inspections and maintenance work should be carried out by persons with the appropriate qualifications, knowledge and experience.
The frequency of air conditioning system cleaning depends on the type and type of equipment, the specificity of the facility, the susceptibility of the installation to pollution and problems resulting from operation. The cleaning process should be carried out very carefully and reliably. Disinfection of inaccurately cleaned surfaces or improper preparation may result in increased growth of harmful chemicals, mites, fungal colonies, bacteria and allergens.
Due to the complexity of the problems that arise before and during the cleaning and operation of air conditioning systems, it is worthwhile to use the knowledge and experience of specialized companies. As part of comprehensive real estate services, they offer a full range of services related to the maintenance of air-conditioning systems, including day-to-day administration, cyclical technical inspections, maintenance work, disinfection and cleaning based on the results of bacterial swabs from the air-conditioning system.
In addition, in facilities equipped with BMS (Building Management System), the management system of automatic control systems performs daily verifications of weather conditions and the extent to which the quality requirements of the indoor environment are met. All this in order not only to detect and eliminate possible irregularities, but above all to ensure comfort and safety, which means a good working climate.