Air Quality and Re-Opening Your Business

ramaker insights

Air Quality and Re-Opening Your Business

mechanical engineering

air quality and re-opening your business

Infectious diseases are spread in a variety of ways, including through the air. There are many strategies that can reduce the spread, and Ramaker can help analyze the potential risks in your HVAC systems during re-opening.

Air Quality and Re-Opening Your Business

WHAT WE PROVIDE

Ramaker is currently offering a service that will provide a report that details the findings of your building evaluation and outlines potential issues with the HVAC systems that may increase the risk of spreading infection. All recommendations provided are based on current Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).

The report will provide:

  •    a summary of the evaluation
  •    a rough cost estimate for recommended repairs
  •    a copy of the evaluation checklist
  •    photos of key areas of discussion
  •    commercial design standard references

VENTILATION AND YOUR SPACE

COVID has brought about lots of discussion on natural ventilation as a response. You want to move large air volume with vents and exhaust fans, the use of open sidewalls, and/or an operable roof system. When temperatures allow, you want to open the building and ventilate naturally.

Infection via air transmission is of critical concern. With recirculation, the concentration of indoor air pollutants increases. With outside air addition, the concentration of indoor air pollutants decreases. Natural ventilation helps reduce the concentration of indoor air pollutants.

However, natural ventilation will not work for all situations. Building type, location, and/or climate all have an effect. Make sure to consider the following for your ventilation needs:

  • Confirm your HVAC systems are providing the code required outdoor air ventilation. Increasing the amount of outdoor air will greatly improve indoor air quality. However each system needs to be evaluated individually to determine how much outdoor air the system can properly condition. The addition of energy recovery equipment can facilitate the increase of ventilation air while minimizing the impact on your existing equipment.
  • Install higher efficiency air filters in your air handling systems. Currently guidelines recommend MERV 13. Increasing filter efficiency also reduces air handler performance, so a design professional should review your systems to determine if increasing filter efficiency is possible.
  • Confirm good air circulation in your HVAC zones. Stagnant air can hold contaminants in the space.

We are all doing our best to maintain operations and also provide a safe, healthy environment for all. If you have any questions on the above, please reach out to Jeff here.

Air Quality and Re-Opening Your Business
Air Quality and Re-Opening Your Business

JEFF RADUE, PE

Senior MEP Engineer

Jeff has more than 20 years of professional service within the consulting engineering industry. As a project engineer and manager, Jeff offers an extensive background in the design and analysis of HVAC, plumbing systems, power distribution and lighting systems for industrial and commercial projects. He has also accumulated a wide range of experience in the areas of civil design, process/mechanical engineering, and environmental remediation.

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