Taking all necessary safety precautions for coronavirus includes the basics we all know by now—like washing your hands for 20 seconds, wearing masks and gloves when appropriate, or standing 6 feet apart—but your facility itself can also be part of the solution. How to prevent coronavirus is the question on everyone’s mind these days, and React Industries can help.
The Difference Between COVID-19 and Coronavirus
To some, all of these terms around the virus may seem like a distinction without a difference, it’s important to at least understand the proper terminology when discussing the current pandemic:
Coronavirus – A family of viruses distinguished by their crown/corona shape formed by a series of proteins protruding out of the virus’ surface. There are actually seven coronaviruses known to cause illness in humans (four of which spread the common cold).
SARS-CoV-2 – The specific virus that is the subject of the current pandemic.
COVID-19 – The disease caused by SARS-CoV-2, most notable for its potentially severe respiratory symptoms.
First reported in late December 2019, SARS-CoV-2 spread rapidly throughout Wuhan, China, and the surrounding region. Unfortunately, as we all know, within only a few months the virus has infected millions of people in nearly every country around the world.
Spread is primarily caused by droplets in the air from coughing or sneezing, though the virus does survive on different surfaces for different lengths of time. The fact that it is spread by droplets in the air means your facility’s HVAC system can play an important role in keeping the virus at bay.
HVAC as a Coronavirus Safety Measure
Your HVAC system provides clean air inside your facility in a variety of ways. First is the outdoor air that is brought into your facility. Outdoor air is generally considered a lower-risk source of coronavirus infection than indoor air.
Existing air inside your facility is also recirculated, blended with outside air, and filtered. When filters are replaced as needed, the system is quite effective at reducing airborne contaminants. It is also possible to install UV lighting at strategic locations inside your system to kill viruses, bacteria, and fungi that can all reduce indoor air quality.
What Role Does HVAC Air Filtration Play?
Depending on the equipment that makes up your system, particularly the fans, you may or may not be able to implement high-efficiency, MERV 13 filters. High-efficiency filters are designed to provide maximum air dilution so fewer contaminants are present in the air.
React Industries can find the most ideal filter solution for your system. HEPA filters, for example, will significantly reduce airflow and will negate your system’s ability to reduce contamination. MERV 13 filters run into similar problems depending on your fan power.
It may seem counterintuitive that a more efficient or powerful filtration method could actually harm indoor air quality, but it all depends on airflow. If air can’t adequately flow through your system, your HVAC is doing very little to prevent the spread of viruses.
It is also important to remember that, after being used in your system, air filters are, by their very nature, contaminated. Not necessarily contaminated by the coronavirus, but contaminated nonetheless. Having your commercial filters changed by a professional team like React will ensure the proper precautions are being taken. This can be included as part of your regular preventative maintenance schedule.
Indoor air quality is important during normal times to ensure your building’s occupants are kept safe and healthy. During a pandemic, a top-of-mind awareness of commercial indoor air quality is absolutely essential.
React Industries Is Keeping Buildings Safe
As one of the premier commercial facility HVAC providers in New York City and the surrounding region (the epicenter of the pandemic), we have a special responsibility to keep our customers safe.
Since the early days of React, we’ve been delivering comprehensive HVAC services, and that experience has culminated in the skill to handle HVAC in the current situation. A partnership with React Industries is a way to develop the peace of mind that you are doing everything possible to maintain high indoor air quality standards. Give us a call today and we can get started.