How to Disinfect the Indoor Air at Your Business (Video)
Published December 2020
“We needed to find options for what we could do as a business to make the place as safe as possible for when the kids came back,” Ron Anderson, Northern Force Dance Company (Blaine, MN)
Disinfect the Air to Reduce Viruses & Other Pathogens
Cleaning and sanitizing, along with other social best-practices, are no longer enough to protect people from COVID-19 or other airborne illnesses. Disinfecting, ventilation, air purifiers and air filtration systems are part of a safe and proactive plan to protect yourself and your business in this new age of heightened safety and awareness.
As many companies work to safely reopen businesses across the nation, we are installing the latest technologies that disinfect airborne and surface viruses, bacteria and pathogens. Here we share an example of a business in Blaine, MN that worked quickly to install highly efficient technology throughout their business that disinfects the indoor air around the clock.
The Minnesota Department of Health recommends working with a professional to evaluate complex systems, such as in commercial buildings or schools, and to be careful about using unproven technologies. TRC only recommends and installs technologies with substantiated evidence and proven results.
2 Types of Air Qualify Defense (The Science)
Disinfecting HVAC solutions are becoming more and more efficient, affordable and popular, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic has swept the globe. The design for Northern Force Dance Company, a business with multiple individual rooms, functioning at different hours with different occupancy rates, was a two-pronged approach. This facility is supporting the safety of not only the students, but the staff and family members as well. The battle against airborne pathogens in every environment is different and you should always consult a professional to assess your particular facility.
Type 1: HVAC – NeedlePoint Bipolar Ionization (NPBI)
This NPBI unit gets installed directly onto your HVAC, treating the air throughout your facility. These units treat the “entire facility” – however, the air in the facility is likely only going to cycle 4-5 times per day, which would not be sufficient for a facility like Northern Force Dance Company when they have classes cycling through on an hourly basis.
The World Health Organization recently said that to reduce viral spread, buildings should have ventilation that changes the total volume of air in a room at least six times an hour. Although there’s wide variation in how different spaces are ventilated, some hospitals, planes and new buildings may change the air as much as 12 times an hour. Some schools and restaurants may have air exchange rates of three to five times an hour.
- This technology is an air purifying unit that eliminates airborne & surface particulates, odors & pathogens
- NPBI saves up to 30% on energy consumption, lowers carbon footprint, and does not need to be replaced regularly
- Reduces VOCs & microparticles – known triggers for Asthma, Bronchitis, Emphysema & other respiratory issues
- 30 minutes inactivates:
- 99.4% of Coronavirus
- 93.5% of Norovirus
- 96.2% of Staphylococcus (Staph)
- … and many more common viruses, bacteria and pathogens
- This unit is installed right onto your HVAC system
- These are low cost, easy to install, and effective at suppressing mold growth on the coils (our crew installed these units at Northern Force in a matter of minutes!)
Type 2: Airius Fans – Photohydroionization (PHI)
- PHI is very effective at destroying harmful microbials in the air and on surfaces (source)
- Kills 99% of bacteria, viruses and mold (surface and airborne)
- Kills 85% of VOCs and odors (very important in fitness centers)
- Reduces energy costs, often between 20-70%, by cooling the air at an average of 0.5° F per vertical foot
Airius fans, with built in Photohydroionization technology, were installed throughout the facility at Northern Force Dance Company. This allows the air inside each individual space to be continuously treated while the space is occupied, while providing air movement so there is not stagnant air in the space. We installed a total of 14 fans throughout the facility, providing sufficient coverage to disinfect the air throughout.
In order for air filtration systems to be effective in removing viruses from the air, it must be able to remove small airborne particles (in the size range of 0.1-1 um). The EPA, ASHRAE and CDC recommend upgrading your ventilation system in your business to the highest efficiency possible, with the guidance of a technical professional such as The Retrofit Companies, Inc. In particular, professionals who manage school, office, and commercial buildings can contact our team for free for information on ventilation and filtration to respond to COVID-19.
Evidence confirms that COVID-19 can remain airborne for longer times and further distances than originally thought. Therefor, in additional to vigilant disinfecting of surfaces, hand washing, mask-wearing, social distancing and other best practices as recommended by the CDC, it is very important to take measures to reduce the potential for airborne transmission of COVID-19 and other airborne particles. This is particularly important for businesses looking to safely reopen after temporary shutdowns as well as businesses that have continued to remain open throughout the pandemic. Schools, fitness centers, elderly care facilities and more are seeing very rapid rates of installation of these air purifying technologies.