Indoor Air Quality

Improve Indoor Air Quality - Happy Breathing

What is Indoor Air Quality?

IAQ – short for ‘Indoor Air Quality’ – refers to the quality of the air we breathe indoors. Not only is having enough fresh air important, but the quality of indoor air also has a significant impact on the wellbeing and performance of those present.

Unfiltered, indoor air can be polluted with biological, chemical and combustion pollutants:

  • Biological pollutants: agents derived from living organisms, such as bacteria, molds, mildew, viruses, house dust, mites and pollen.

  • Chemical pollutants: chemical compounds emitted from everyday (cleaning) products, air fresheners, disinfectants, furniture and paint.

  • Combustion pollutants: emissions from indoor combustion appliances, varying from carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and (ultra)fine particles to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and formaldehyde.

Pollutants that cause us trouble include carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxides (NO), carbon monoxide (CO), ozone (O3), particulate matter (PM), radon (Rn) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as formaldehyde, benzene, etc. – which infiltrate through, among others, outside air, printers, furniture, carpeting, computers, cleaning products, paints, pollen and mould (humidity). 

Of the 82,000 commercial chemicals used, we know what the negative (effects) on our health are for less than 15% of these.

Pollutants enter our body both through inhalation and skin absorption. The most common physical ailments caused by poor indoor air quality are asthma, fatigue, irritation and headaches. In turn, these ailments contribute to a decreased feeling of wellness, diminished productivity and/or more absenteeism-related illness.

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has declared that the health risks posed inside are greater than those outside.

Why Clean the Air Indoors?

Air is comfort. Air is energy. Air is life.

90% of our time do we spend indoors. Knowing that indoor air can be up to 50 times more polluted than outdoor (or ambient) air, it is of vital importance that we clean the air we work and live in using the appropriate air purifying tools and systems.

The quality of the air we breathe has a direct effect on our health and performance. We purify the air not only to eliminate bad odors, but also to maintain a healthy working and living environment for the people we care about and count on.

Research confirms the importance of clean air

  • Danish study (Wargocki, 1998) concludes that productivity increases by an average of 5% when sources of pollution are removed from the space (resulting in better air quality).

  • A study by Bakó-Biró (2004) on test subjects exposed to emissions from new computer equipment shows that these test subjects made 9% more errors.

Indoor Air Pollution: Facts

A whopping 40 million Americans live in damp and unhealthy homes, an environment which doubles the risk of asthma. The long-term effects of polluted indoor air range from asthma and allergies to lower performance rates and even learning difficulties: 

  • As many as 20 million people suffer from asthma and allergies due to bad indoor air.

  • Every year 600,000 Americans die from respiratory diseases.

  • Poor indoor air quality can affect the learning abilities in children as well as our general productivity.

A healthier indoor climate can successfully reduce the number of sick leaves in your company as well as improve the learning and productivity rates of your children and/or coworkers.

When To Test Your Indoor Air Quality

It is safe to say that if you are experiencing health-related problems related to the respiratory system, it is a good time to check the safety of your indoor air quality.

Other reasons to have your IAQ tested:

  • When you or someone else is having trouble breathing indoors.

  • When you smell something unusual indoors.

  • When you or someone else is constantly getting sick while spending time indoors.

  • When someone has a weak immune system and requires a clean environment.

  • When you are buying a residential or commercial building.

  • Whenever there is a concern or reason to believe that your IAQ is poor or compromised.​

How Cooper Environmental Services Can Help

Our team works with accredited laboratories that specialize in almost every indoor air and surface pollutants.

Our team of certified inspectors will help:

  • Determine the most appropriate testing program

  • Inspect suspected sources and identify potential concerns

  • Quantify air composition

  • Recommend safe and cost-effective treatments to resolve any indoor contamination

  • Determine if there is a health concern and if professional remediation is warranted

Contact Cooper Environmental Services at cooperenviroservices@gmail.com and/or call us at 404-543-6821 to find out more about our air quality testing service.