COVID-19 & Your HVAC System: Your Questions Answered
While coronavirus or COVID-19 is not the only major story in the news cycle anymore, experts warn that the pandemic is far from over. Though the nation’s top infectious disease experts are testing possible vaccines as you read this, it’s not expected that the vaccine will be widely available until early 2021.
What does all this mean for your home and your family? Doctors and scientists alike warn against discarding all personal preventative measures such as the wearing of masks and social distancing until further research has been done. But with much of the country reopening to the public and many homeowners returning to work, many are wondering about the effectiveness and safety of our central air systems.
Our team answers some of the top questions relating to COVID-19 and your HVAC system below:
Can HVAC Systems Spread COVID-19?
The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) released an official statement in April saying they oppose any rumors that running your residential or commercial HVAC system would contribute to the spread of coronavirus.
As of right now, zero reports have indicated that the disease can be spread from space-to-space transmission. Most cases are transmitted from person-to-person contact or by droplets expelled when coughing or sneezing, which is why social distancing and masks are so important as preventative measures.
EDIT: As of July 13, 2020, hundreds of scientists and engineers urged the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to change their previous stance formally ruling out HVAC systems as a possible transmission source. The simple fact is this—the disease has only been extensively studied for approximately 7 months and more research is needed to determine what impact (if any) your HVAC unit has on COVID-19 transmission.
Will Better Ventilation At Home Help Protect My Family from COVID-19?
Better ventilation can help improve the quality of your home’s indoor air, but this should be used as part of a larger plan to keep your family healthy and protected from possible sources of contamination.
You can improve your home’s ventilation by:
- Opening windows or screen doors to refresh your home’s air supply.
- Opening the outside air intake on your HVAC system. Not all HVAC systems have this option, so consult a professional for assistance if necessary.
- Turning on the bathroom fan when the bathroom is in use.
- Turning on your kitchen exhaust fan while cooking.
Can Air Purifiers Help Protect My Family from COVID-19?
Scientists and doctors are still gathering information about how coronavirus is spread, but as of right now there is no scientific evidence that air purification can prevent the spread of the disease.
Air purification systems such as HEPA air filters, ozone generators, and UV lights aid in cleaning your indoor air supply of contaminants such as pollen, tobacco smoke, pet dander, and more. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the use of an air purification system can help improve the quality of your indoor air by reducing the number of contaminants in your indoor air, which in turn, improves your family’s overall health.
Continuing to adhere to social distancing and other preventative protection measures laid out by the CDC will keep your family safest from disease. Households with at-risk family members and those prone to respiratory illness may feel more comfortable taking every precaution necessary.
Indoor air quality is a problem in most homes, and yet it’s an issue that few people are aware of. If you suffer from a sensitivity to poor-quality air, have a medical condition such as severe allergies or asthma, or you’re simply tired of hidden odors or other issues making your home feel dirty and unwelcoming, you may be interested in an air purification system.
If your indoor air quality is causing you discomfort or anxiety, contact Grapids Heating & Cooling, Inc.. We can help you determine the best course of action for your home and loved one’s specific needs. Contact our team online or by phone at (616) 828-0818 to learn how fresher air can grant you better health and peace of mind.
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