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Change in the way we build -Tighter -More chemicals -Air conditioning IAQ…Why is it a bigger issue than ever? Change in the way we live -90% of time indoors.

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Presentation on theme: "Change in the way we build -Tighter -More chemicals -Air conditioning IAQ…Why is it a bigger issue than ever? Change in the way we live -90% of time indoors."— Presentation transcript:

1 Change in the way we build -Tighter -More chemicals -Air conditioning IAQ…Why is it a bigger issue than ever? Change in the way we live -90% of time indoors -Don’t open windows -More moisture Change in products we use -Carpets &furnishings -Cleaners & hygiene -More “stuff” inside Why Are IAQ Concerns Growing ?

2 Building Related  Off gassing – paints, building materials  Moisture & mold  Construction dust  Combustion products  Radon  Garage pollutants Potential Pollutant Sources People Related  Cleaners, personal hygiene products  Furniture, toys, clothes  People – moisture, odours  Pets, plants  Cooking  Pesticide use Multiple Causes

3 IAQ Parameters Temperature Relative Humidity Carbon Dioxide Carbon Monoxide TVOCs Particulate Matter 6 Key IAQ Parameters

4 IAQ – What we know We spend up to 90% of our time in buildings Indoor air is 2-5 times more polluted than outdoor air – Health Canada & EPA The young, the old and the sick are at greatest risk Carbon monoxide (CO) poses a deadly risk Dampness and molds increase respiratory problems and affect the immune system Childhood asthma is increasing at an alarming rate Radon is a significant factor in cancer deaths Issues & Concerns

5 What is good air? Has no odours - as fresh and clean as outdoor air Has fewer pollutants Is easy to breath Is the right temperature and humidity What is Good Indoor Air ?

6 Optimal Relative Humidity Range

7 IAQ – the opportunities Investigation, education & testing Providing solutionsOn-going maintenance Requirements for Good IAQ

8 Diagnosing IAQ Issues Your Nose -Musty odours in basements -Air fresheners used to mask other smells -Chemical odours -Your “fresh” nose is very valuable to clients Your Eyes -Water damage, peeling, cracking, stains, condensation -Excessive crowding, storage -Excessive dust, sooting Clean & Dry Tools

9 Diagnosing IAQ Issues Accurate Temperature & RH Particle counters & VOC monitors Carbon Monoxide Other Tools

10 Diagnosing IAQ Issues Data loggers for long term monitoring of multiple parameters Infrared to find cold surfaces that may lead to moisture & mold More Advanced Tools

11 Solution Strategies 1. Remove the sources of pollutants (the “skunks”) 2. Seal or isolate pollutants 3. Ventilate or dilute them 4. Filter the air These strategies are in order of importance. 4 Step Process

12 Quiet Bath & Kitchen Fans -Under 1 sone -On timers or automatic control Ventilation Opportunities Central Exhaust Fans -Ducted from bathrooms -On timers / controls HRVs/ERVs -Simplified or exhaust ducted -Good controls Remove the Source

13 HRV / ERVs “Lungs” of the house Typically 70% - 80% Efficient Fresh air to the home Stale air from the home Stale air to outside Fresh air from outside Recovery core Heat Recovery Ventilator

14 A “symptom” of moisture problems Remove the source of moisture Fix & avoid leaks Ensure proper drainage Manage RH levels – In summer <55% – In winter <35%-45% - low enough to avoid excessive condensation Keep surfaces warm & dry with proper air circulation “Remove” Example Mold

15 Radon Control A. Gas Permeable Layer (4” clean gravel) B. Plastic Sheeting (under slab or over crawl space) C. Sealing and Caulking ( all openings in concrete floor) D. Vent Pipe (3 or 4 inch PVC pipe) E. A powered exhaust fan on the vent pipe An example of combining seal & ventilate strategies Radon Mitigation

16 At least a MERV 8 or better in the furnace return Measure for pressure drop to ensure proper air flow Other options: – HEPA - portable or central – Specialized high MERV – Electronic Filtration Solutions Filters & Ducts

17 Duct Cleaning ?

18 Be cautious of : Ozone generators Chemical cleaners / fungicides Tea Tree Oil Air purifiers Duct cleaning sanitizing Ultraviolet light purifiers Remove, seal, ventilate, filter There are no “silver bullets” Caution

19 Facts: The air freshener market is over $200 million annually in Canada CBC News Report, 2008 The high efficiency, high profit residential filter market is growing at 8% - 8 times faster than the regular filter market Non-woven Filter Fabric Association Study % of homebuyers will pay more for houses that have healthier indoor air – 8% to 12% more USGBC Study 2007 IAQ Facts

20 Remove or leave out – What potential pollutant sources can be taken out? Seal – What you can’t leave out, look for a “seal” strategy Ventilate – Is there sufficient ventilation? – Both local source and whole house Filter – Is there suitable filtration on the air handling equipment? Final thoughts… What is Good Indoor Air ?


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