How Indoor Ventilation Plays A Key Role In Reducing Viral Spread
Updated: May 27, 2021
The EPA estimates Americans spend an average of 90% of their time indoors each day, and due to the spread of Coronavirus, a lot of that time is spent inside our own homes. Having to be cooped up is one thing, but the stagnant inside air could actually be making us more susceptible to airborne viruses, bacteria and allergens. For years many of the world's leading health organizations have cited poor indoor air quality as a culprit for the spread of infectious diseases, including the novel Coronavirus.
Luckily, it's an easy fix. Increasing ventilation with air exchange systems like a whole house fan is a proven way to reduce the spread of bacteria and viruses in homes, schools, and workplaces, and create healthy and more comfortable environment.
"Well-designed natural ventilation systems can often be more effective than air conditioning in promoting effective infection control by increasing the number of air exchanges." — World Health Organization
Don't be confused when it comes to home ventilation and your air conditioning unit. While you can feel the air moving when your air conditioner is running, the system is only recirculating the indoor air, not exchanging it with cleaner outside air. That fresh, clean outside air is a crucial part of proper ventilation.
The WHO says those isolated indoors need fresh air exchanged into their rooms at least 12 times per hour to permit the rapid dilution of contaminated air into the surrounding areas. While your A/C can't move that much air on its own, a whole house fan system will exchange the entire volume of a home or building 15 times per hour, expelling indoor air pathogens before giving them the chance to recirculate and settle on surfaces.
Whole house fans are among the most cost-effective and energy efficient ways to promote clean, healthy indoor air without sacrificing any comfort — they even make your current A/C system more efficient.
A whole house fan system will not prevent illness altogether or cure disease, and it’s difficult to measure all the health benefits associated with certain products. But the evidence showing the importance of proper ventilation is overwhelming.
What the research shows
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), indoor air can be 2-5 times more polluted than outdoor air, even in major metropolitan, smoggy cities
The EPA also ranks indoor air pollution among the top four environmental hazards in America.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC), increasing home ventilation is the top thing you can do to prevent viral spread in your home after washing your hands and disinfecting surfaces.
The American Lung Association says effective ventilation may also help keep bacteria, viruses and other pollutants out of the indoor air.
Contact us today to learn more about improving your home ventilation and cooling systems.