Workplace Wellness 101: How To Improve Air Quality

Air quality in workplaces can often be poor. With many workers in a small space, dust, dirt, and debris accumulate quickly. Poor air quality can be detrimental, leading to headaches, respiratory issues, fevers, and other health issues. This negatively impacts productivity and overall job satisfaction. Fortunately, the following tips will help improve air quality in your workplace and keep employees comfortable and healthy. Keep reading!



Monitor Humidity Levels

High humidity levels impact workplace air quality by promoting mould and mildew growth. On the other hand, low humidity levels lead to dry skin and respiratory issues. Therefore, ensure that humidity levels are optimum to improve air quality. Excellent humidity levels range between 30% and 50%.

The best way of fighting mould and humidity is by investing in dehumidifiers. Dehumidifiers help remove moisture in the air until the humidity reaches the desired level. This helps prevent mould growth while maintaining good levels of moisture.

Clean Your Workplace Regularly

Cleaning the workplace is essential for improving indoor air quality. Regular cleaning, dusting, and vacuuming help clear away clutter and other debris that cause poor air quality. As a rule of thumb, the workplace should be cleaned daily, considering how quickly dirt and dust accumulate.

You should also schedule regular professional cleaning to help maintain indoor air quality. Regular cleaning prevents pollutants from mixing with the air and causing health issues for your employees. Be sure to use non-toxic products when cleaning, as they’re safer. Harsh cleaners contain toxic chemicals that pollute the air and cause health concerns.

Inspect And Clean Air Ducts

Dirty air ducts can be a source of pollutants. They’re a perfect home for rodents, pests, and insects that contaminate them with illness-causing bacteria. When the air ducts are contaminated, the air entering your workplace will also be polluted and cause employees to get sick.

Furthermore, if your air ducts are clogged, moisture gets trapped, leading to mould and mildew growth. If your air ducts contain mould, the air in your workplace will contain mould spores. Mould is dangerous as it leads to many health issues, such as allergies, asthma, and other illnesses. Therefore, if you think your air ducts contaminate air quality, call the pros to assess and correct the problem before employees’ health is compromised.

Add Office Plants

Plants make your office more inviting and help clean the air. Studies show that plants clean air in a closed environment by absorbing toxins and harmful gases while producing more oxygen. Moreover, indoor plants regulate humidity and improve mood. Therefore, it would be best to get some plants if you want to improve your workplace’s air quality and aesthetics. Some of the best air-purifying plants are bamboo palm, spider and snake plants, peace lily, chrysanthemum, and aloe vera.

Invest In Air Purifiers

Air purifiers are devices that remove contaminants from the air in a room to improve air quality. They eliminate workplace allergens, bacteria, harmful gases, and other airborne particles. Air purifiers are particularly beneficial in offices with poor ventilation or high levels of air pollution. Be sure to choose an air purifier with multiple filters, as one filter can’t do the entire job.

Improve Ventilation

Proper ventilation is essential in improving the air quality in your workplace and making it a comfortable working space. Adequate ventilation helps remove and dilute harmful contaminants from indoor air. On the other hand, lack of ventilation allows the build-up of humidity, carbon monoxide, and germs, which harm employees’ health. You can improve natural ventilation by partially or fully opening doors, windows, and air vents to let fresh air in.

You can also improve ventilation mechanically using an HVAC system. This is reliable as it provides fresh air consistently. However, this is more costly as the system requires energy and regular maintenance.



Identify Sources Of Workplace Air Pollution

Another effective way to improve workplace air quality is identifying the sources of pollution. Understanding the causes of air pollution will help you develop an effective plan. The common sources are mould, bacteria, dust, harsh cleaning products, furnishings, and harmful organic compounds from building materials.

Perform air tests to determine the specific sources of air pollution in your workplace. After identifying the sources, develop a plan to remove or reduce them. For instance, consider replacing harsh chemical cleaners with natural alternatives, and provide proper ventilation for areas likely to experience mould and mildew growth. If you can’t determine the sources of air pollution in your workplace, call professionals for help.

Discourage Smoking Around The Workplace

Cigarette smoke is a significant source of air pollution as it contains carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, and other harmful chemicals. Exposure to second-hand smoke can cause many health problems, such as asthma, cancer, and inner ear infections. Therefore, it makes sense to implement a no-smoking policy around the workplace to help improve air quality and protect employees’ health.

Change HVAC Air Filters Regularly

Air filters are designed to eliminate dust, dirt, and other pollutants from the air before it enters your workplace. Therefore, if they’re damaged or clogged, pollutants will access your workplace, thus putting your employees at risk. To avoid this, ensure you regularly change your air filters. How often you change your air filters will depend on the type you have and how often you use your HVAC system. As a thumb rule, you should change your air filters every three months.

Educate Employees

Finally, training and educating employees on the benefits of good air quality in the workplace is essential. Train them on how to get involved in improving indoor air quality. Employees can get involved by keeping their workstations clean, avoiding smoking in the workplace, and using natural cleaning products and fresheners.

The Bottom Line

Indoor air quality should be among the most crucial workplace concerns since it impacts your employee’s productivity and well-being. Poor air quality increases the risks of health issues such as respiratory illnesses, headaches, even mental issues. Fortunately, by following the tips outlined in this article, you can significantly improve air quality in your workplace.

Photo credits: Coworking London