COVID-19 Air Ventilation: Demand Increases for Public Spaces
8 MIN. READ
COVID-19 put a spotlight on the dangers of airborne contaminants. To combat these dangers companies are turning to clean air and air filtration technologies. Proper air filtration helps prevent the spread of contaminants and airborne viruses, including COVID-19. This highlights the need for proper HVAC ventilation systems and filters in public spaces to a) provide a safer environment for employees and/or customers, and b) gain a competitive advantage by attracting customers looking for higher safety assurances in public areas.
The case for improved air filtration
Air filtration is not a new phenomenon. Airborne allergens have been around forever, and seasonal allergies have long been a nuisance for millions of people. Countless products deal with airborne contaminants like air purifiers, scrubbers, and bi-polar ionization machines. These devices trap particulates in filters or neutralize them in the air.
Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the spotlight is on prevention. This has put the HVAC industry at center stage, and the call to fine-tune or upgrade HVAC units has sent building owners scrambling. Doing so will help slow the spread of illness and give residents, tenants, and customers a measure of comfort that their building's owners are doing what is necessary to enhance health and safety.
EPA and CDC weigh in on COVID-19 air ventilation
According to the EPA and CDC, the best way to lower concentrations of indoor air pollutants like COVID-19 virus particles is to increase ventilation and have proper air filtration systems in place for indoor venues. These measures should go hand in hand with a broader health and safety approach. Social distancing, enhanced cleaning and facial coverings are all common best practices in most public spaces.
Before businesses and venues reopened their doors, preventive measures needed to be in place. This required large investments in supplies, signage, filters and new HVAC units.
Is your business prepared?
Most businesses, large and small, are not prepared. They have poor ventilation or inadequate HVAC systems. Before the pandemic, businesses were operating within the status quo, using common filters and usually the least expensive variety. Many business had no established protocols for health and safety and had not planned to invest in new equipment and supplies.
When the pandemic hit, an increased focus on HVAC and air safety followed. Building owners had to focus on health and safety and spend money on new equipment. Merv 13 filters became a hot commodity as owners looked to swap out their cheap filters for ones that provided adequate COVID-19 air ventilation. They also increased fan speeds and air exchange cycles within their buildings. This required maintenance programs, new supplies, and frequent condition reports.
All these efforts meant an increase in spending. Sourcing became an issue since the demand was high and supply was low. Now technicians have access to specific technology and products that consumers are buying.
Options have expanded
HVAC contractors should offer several options. They should offer high-level air filtration for a variety of companies and industries. Not every application is the same, so HVAC contractors should recommend specific items or units for specific situations:
- Schools and medical facilities. These special-use buildings need advanced filtration technology. When dealing with hospital patients and students, there are strict guidelines and standards. High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters are used in sensitive areas that cannot have any particulates floating in the air. Adjusting outside air intake is also a measure used in specific situations.
- Venues and restaurants. Whenever you have the transient public in your facilities, ventilation should be a priority. Air exchange rates should increase, larger HVAC units may need to be installed and more frequent preventive maintenance may be required.
These all present opportunities for HVAC contractors to position themselves as leaders who can provide, repair, upgrade, and maintain specific units. Solutions that help with quality COVID-19 air ventilation will be in high demand.
Reassurance is key
People are longing to get back to normal. Many want blatant assurance that when they go to public spaces to spend their money, they will be safe. They want an environment that has serious protocols to slow the spread of COVID-19 and other contaminants.
As a qualified HVAC contractor, you should be able to address any issues with filtration, ventilation, and air quality. You should be able to present yourself as a subject matter expert who can provide the best supplies and products that focus on health and safety.
Raiven can help
Raiven helps HVAC contractors create robust supply chains and keep up with the new demand for COVID-19 air ventilation. Having access to a broad network of suppliers and products gives you a competitive advantage. Raiven also provides visibility into global supply chains, following shifts in demand, and keeping you plugged into the best pricing.
A software platform that gives you a heads-up over the competition and positions you as a leader in your industry is an avenue worth exploring.
Reach out today for more information.