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About Indoor Air Quality

All of us face various health risks as we go about our day-to-day lives. Driving in cars, flying in planes, engaging in recreational activities and exposure to environmental pollutants all pose varying degrees of risk. We accept risks because to do otherwise would restrict our ability to lead our lives normally. We might decide to avoid other risks if we had the opportunity to make informed choices. Indoor air pollution is a risk that you can do something about.

Wooden Farmhouse Table

Indoor air quality is the term describing the condition of air inside buildings. Such air quality is influenced by the temperature and humidity of the air and the level of carbon dioxide that occupants produce. Air quality may be impacted adversely by toxic air contaminants (particles, gases, vapours and fumes) and by agents with specific irritating, offensive odours. The most common indoor contaminants are volatile organic compounds (VOCs) outgassed from interior furnishings. Microbiological contaminants (namely bacteria, mould, mildew and fungi) run a close second.


While air quality is often the primary concern for a comfortable indoor environment, environments may also be influenced adversely by heating or cooling problems. These issues can cause noise, lighting and other issues.

Sick Building Syndrome

This syndrome is diagnosed when many building occupants report nonspecific problems such as headaches, fatigue, dry skin, and eye and nose and throat irritation. In the U.S. there are many litigation cases regarding indoor air quality.

IAQ Sources

There are many sources of indoor air pollution. These sources include: 

  • Combustion sources such as oil, gas, kerosene, coal, wood and tobacco products

  • Building materials and furnishings like insulation with asbestos, damp carpet, cabinetry or furniture made of certain pressed wood products

  • Products for household cleaning, maintenance, personal care or hobbies

  • Central heating and cooling systems and humidification devices

  • Pesticides and outdoor air pollution

Controlling IAQ Problems

Ventilation and filtration combat contaminants by diluting their concentrations within a building. However, the basic long-term IAQ strategy for any building should ultimately be contaminant source control. By keeping HVAC ductwork clean and dry, we significantly reduce the potential for microbial contamination within buildings.


The cooling coil of the air conditioning facilitates mould, fungi and bacterial growth. All air circulated by the air conditioning system passes through the cooling coil. By-products of bacteria, mould and fungi that colonise air handling systems create endotoxins, mycotoxins and a range of toxic allergenic organic fragments collectively known as macromolecular organic dust (MOD). Conventional air filters fail to capture MOD.

Some symptoms of MOD include:

  • Skin irritations

  • Sore throat

  • Fatigue

  • Respiratory complaints

  • Lung infections

  • Nausea

  • Blocked sinuses

  • Headaches

  • Eye irritations

Coil cleaning and sanitisation is the most effective method of fungi and bacterial control within air handling systems. Call us today to set up your maintenance visit.

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