City with a gym, school, library, hospital and hotel with the need of good indoor air quality.

Indoor Air Quality Risks By Type Of Structure

Contaminated air poses a treath to both human health and the surrounding environment in all types of buildings. There are various reasons why this happens: everyone should have the right to breathe clean air, but there are categories of people (as well as objects) that are more exposed to risks arising from HVAC systems with chemical and/or microbiological contaminations. In this article, we’re going to analyze indoor air quality risks by type of structure!

Indoor air quality in museums and libraries

Museums and libraries are among the places that most need to enjoy good indoor air quality (along with other facilities like cinemas and theaters).
  •  When it comes to entertainment, visitor comfort is essential: excessive heat or cold would lead to the risk of discomfort; moreover, if there are any contaminations, employees and visitors could get sick.
  • Malfunctioning HVAC systems lead to high energy waste: in a historical moment where saving on bills is vital, HVAC hygienic maintenance mustn’t be forgotten.
  • Works of art such as paintings, manuscripts, books and wooden works could deteriorate if the air is too humid or too dry. In addition to appropriate devices, ventilation systems play a crucial role in this.

Indoor air quality in schools

The transmission of viruses and bacteria is a daily occurrence in schools, especially among young children, who are vulnerable individuals. Installing HVAC systems and maintaining them from both a techical and hygienic point of view provides access to numerous benefits.
  • Continuous air exchange is ensured even in the cold months, when windows can’t remain open for too long;
  • filters prevent the penetration of pollutant from the outside;
  • germs and bacteria deriving from coughs and sneezes diffuse less easily to other classrooms.

Indoor air quality in gyms 

It is important to train to stay healthy, but breathing dirty air has the opposite effect. At the gym, windows are often closed, everyone touches the same objects and the breath is labored due to fatigue. For all of these reasons, well-functioning and clean HVAC systems are necessary to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria, in addition to periodic sanitization of the enviroment and of the objects, in order to avoid the transmission of diseases through contact. 

Indoor air quality in healthcare environments

Facilities such as clinics and hospitals are attended by extremely fragile individuals or by those who could infect each other, their visitors and the medical staff. Mindful of the experience of Covid-19, where poorly maintained HVAC systems contributed to the spread of the disease, it is necessary to install and maintain well-functioning ventilation systems. This will:
  • minimize the risk of staff contagion;
  • prevent those attending the facilities for routine tests from becoming ill;
  • prevent vulnerable individuals from contracting additional diseases from other hospital departments (through air ducts).

Indoor air quality in hotels

Providing good indoor air quality in hotels and other accomodation facilites is crucial to promote customers’ well-being. Many people attend these building simultaneously, for longer or shorter periods, contributing to a high turnover of guests.
  •  The high number of occupants facilitates the spread of germs and bacteria through air conditioning systems; 
  • Legionella could vaporize from plumbing systems into bathrooms and spread through air conditioning systems;
  • poor air quality can lead to illnesses and have a negative impact on the facility’s reputation, not to mention the risk of penalties or, worse, closing.

Indoor air quality in production plants

Production sites where materials are processed, from food to chemical or meetal powders, are places where poor maintenance of HVAC systems could be fatal for workers.
  • Dust of all kinds accumulates accumulates in all HVAC components;
  • in absence of regular hygienic management, dust particles are reintroduced into the working environments and breathed in by employees, with serious consequences for their health
  • it is also important to remember that processes materials could become contaminated, especially food!

In this article, we’ve only analized a few examples of places where installing HVAC systems and ensuring good HVAC hygiene can make a difference. Breathing clean air is a right: ensuring that your collaborators can work in optimal conditions will create a healthier and safer working space, increasing well-being and keeping you away from legal risks. Your company’s reputation will skyrocket!


If you want to know more about other  indoor air quality risks and how to handle them, have a look at this article about occupational health and safety!

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