Proper building operations and routine maintenance are critical to ensuring healthy IAQ. NIOSH looked at 500 of the first IAQ investigations that they had done and found that inadequate ventilation, contamination from inside the building, and contamination from outside the building were the top three sources of IAQ problems. These types of issues can be solved by doing things like maintaining the building heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, following guidelines for ensuring adequate ventilation as office suites are rearranged, routinely cleaning office spaces and common areas, and properly storing cleaning and other chemicals that are used in the workplace. These actions help ensure proper IAQ and are all part of a well developed building operation and maintenance plan.
Building managers are often the first resource that building tenants and occupants turn to if they feel there is an IAQ problem. The following references provide information about investigating IAQ issues and controlling IAQ in the workplace.
Building Air Quality: Action Plan (PDF). Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Provides an 8-step building air quality action plan for building owners and managers to be used with Building Air Quality: A Guide for Building Owners and Facility Managers.
OSHA Technical Manual (OTM). OSHA Directive TED 01-00-015 [TED 1-0.15A], (1999, January 20). Includes chapters on indoor air quality, ventilation, standards and codes, various indoor air contaminants, investigation guidelines, sampling methods, and gives recommendations to employers on how to prevent and control IAQ problems
ASHRAE Standard 62.1-2007. Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality. Specifies minimum ventilation rates and IAQ that will be acceptable to human occupants to minimize the potential for adverse health effects. Whereas ASHRAE Standard 62 has always been considered a design standard for ventilation, building owner/operators should pay particular attention to Section 8 titled “Operations and Maintenance.” Section 8 offers guidance to the building owner/operator as to which ventilation components should be maintained, which tasks should be performed, and the minimum frequency for performing those tasks.
All other documents, that are not PDF materials or formatted for the web, are available as Microsoft Office® formats and videos and are noted accordingly. If additional assistance is needed with reading, reviewing or accessing these documents or any figures and illustrations, please also contact OSHA's Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 693-2300.
**eBooks - EPUB is the most common format for e-Books. If you use a Sony Reader, a Nook, or an iPad you can download the EPUB file format. If you use a Kindle, you can download the MOBI file format.
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