May is National Wildfire Awareness Month. As we have all begun to realize, wildfires cause significant destruction to property and affect the livelihoods of civilians. California has experienced severe drought, and the dry conditions tend to be a catalyst for brush fires. Due to the impact of climate change, the traditional wildfire season extends for more prolonged periods, as can be recently seen by the outbreak of two fires, both East and North of Phoenix, Arizona.
In this issue of our newsletter, we focus on the importance of asbestos removal and having properties following best practices in the advent of fire. May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, and we provide insight into the importance of removing contaminants and particulate matter through efficient indoor air quality. The risk of fire hazards in healthcare facilities is often overlooked. We shed some light on the need for fire sprinkler head cleaning and how this mitigates the threat of possible fires. Finally, we turn our attention towards the importance of safely reopening commercial facilities and offices since restrictions have been loosened and positive cases of Covid-19 infections have drastically reduced. Let’s continue to be safe and take the necessary precautions to get through this pandemic unscathed.
Air duct cleaning to Assist with Asthma and Allergies
BY AIRTEK INDOOR AIR SOLUTIONS
May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, and according to statistics, 55% of the U.S. population tests positive for one or more allergens. One in the six causes of allergies is the lack of proper care of the ducting system in a building. According to our air duct cleaning professionals, the average building should have its air ducts cleaned once every two to five years. After prolonged use, a system can collect dust and mold particles that may build up on the interior lining.
Included in the duct cleaning process, the filters in your system should be maintained as well. If there is an excessive amount of particle buildup, the filter can no longer function properly and impede airflow. In addition to increasing your springtime allergies, a poorly preserved filter can also cause the air to be overly dry. Overly dry air can lead to irritated mucous membranes and nosebleeds.
A professional air duct cleaning process should take, on average, 3-4 hours for residential buildings. Commercial buildings can be spread throughout multiple days depending on hours of use, size, and the contents within the structure.
The average person spends 90% of their life indoors. Having pure indoor air quality is integral to health. By getting a professional air duct cleaning in your home, school, business, or workplace, you can help promote a healthy living environment for yourself and the people around you.
Airtek Indoor Air Solutions can provide free estimates for more accurate pricing and method options.
Fireproofing – When Asbestos Removal is Necessary?
BY ALLIANCE ENVIRONMENTAL
Fires always present an imminent danger. This is none so more when a fire risk could come about in a facility with asbestos-containing materials. If this asbestos material were to ignite, these fibers would become airborne, causing health and safety concerns.
The abatement process begins with our crews clearing out all items that can be removed from the work area. Then our technicians next establish a safe, secure, negative air-pressure containment area before work begins. All Alliance crew members will be outfitted with the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) during the abatement process, including special abatement suits, gloves, masks, goggles, boots, and respiratory protection.
It is essential that the proper protocols and procedures are followed to contain, safely remove and dispose of asbestos in the appropriate manner.
Pictured here is a property in Las Vegas that reached out to Alliance Environmental to complete fireproofing on the facilities’ ceilings by removing previous asbestos-containing fireproofing material. The negative air pressure containment was set up, and our crew members using the proper PPE and plastic sheeting.
If you believe, for whatever reason, that your facility contains asbestos, it’s best to act preemptively to remove it before the fibers get dislodged and become an airborne health hazard.
Safely Reopening Facilities and Offices
BY MINTIE LLC.
As cases improve and communities move from tier to tier, many offices, warehouses, manufacturing facilities, commercial buildings, and universities are getting ready to reopen after being closed for an extended period. For the safety of the employees and students returning to the facility, the indoor air quality should be evaluated, and systems maintained and enhanced before reopening.
• Poor filtration increases the spread of dust, bacteria, and other contaminants through the facility. In turn, increasing the chances of a COVID-19 outbreak.
• Over time dirt, debris, allergens, and other particulates accumulate in the HVAC system and air ducts. Moisture from HVAC systems also provides a breeding ground for bacteria and fungus to grow. Lack of maintenance will decrease the system’s efficiency and lifespan.
• Inefficient HVAC systems lead to poor indoor air quality and airflow, improper filtration, duct leaks, and higher bills.
Like HVAC systems and air ducts, air handler units are significant for proper airflow. They also need to be well maintained and refurbished to increase efficiency and extend their potential lifespan. Air handlers house filtration equipment that are IMPORTANT components of creating comfortable indoor air quality. Our team will perform maintenance by replacing worn or damaged gaskets and clean cooling coils, filtration equipment, and air blowers. If your filters need to be replaced or upgrade, our team will lay out your options. They will complete the service by removing previous coatings and apply a durable composite layer of engineered epoxy, advanced fire barrier, and antimicrobial waterproof topcoat.
Mintie offers a wide range of services that will benefit your facility, employees, and students in, long term. Mintie has been in the indoor air quality business for over 80 years and has expanded services and products through the years. From beginning to end, you will be working with our team of well-trained and certified experts dedicated to fulfilling your indoor air quality needs with high-quality services and exceptional customer service. We also have a rapid response team that is available in case of emergencies. We are compliant with all regulatory standards, including but not limited to NADCA, OSHA, NFPA, ASHRAE, and EPA.
Fire Sprinkler Head Cleaning in Healthcare Facilities
BY COAST IAQ AND LIFE SAFETY SERVICES
There are many features of a healthcare facility that go unnoticed until they are needed. One of those features is the facility’s small but mighty fire sprinklers. Fire sprinklers are ESSENTIAL. They were designed to control and possibly extinguish a fire early on to allow occupants in the building to exit safely and give firefighters time to arrive on the scene. Because of their importance, there should be nothing holding them back from doing their jobs, especially any kind of buildup.
• Clogged openings create irregular spray patterns, preventing even distribution on the affected area.
• Healthcare facilities can be sterile top to bottom, but missed sprinkler heads can accumulate dust, potentially housing bacteria and viruses. Those particulates are then retransmitted through the facility’s HVAC system.
• -Bacteria and virus-ridden dust and grime can also retransmit when the fire sprinklers go off.
• Excessive dust and grime could prevent the heat sensor from detecting the fire, creating a delayed response or no response at all.
Adding to the list of problems that could arise with dirty sprinklers can also result in citations and fines for the facility for not being up to code.
Cleaning heads isn’t as easy as just wiping down the surface. NFPA standards prohibit physically touching sprinkler heads when cleaning to avoid damage or accidentally setting them off. We help healthcare facilities adhere to codes set forth by NFPA. NFPA 25 Annex A.188.8.131.52.2 (5) states:
Be prepared for any unexpected fire by getting your fire sprinkler heads cleaned regularly with Coast IAQ & Life Safety Services.
Striving to Ensure Total Client Satisfaction
By Lisa Mejias – Pizzo
Brian From Alliance Environmental Group, LLC, from start to finish, has been highly professional, and his work and crew have been top notch. Brian Answered all my questions and concerns, and when I called, he picked up the phone to chat with me. I would recommend him and his company over and over. Thank you – Lisa Mejias – Pizzo