indoor air quality

The Value of Improving Indoor Air Quality in Buildings

Understanding and improving indoor air quality is important because it ensures your indoor spaces are providing adequate ventilation and keeping building tenants comfortable, productive, and healthy

Indoor air quality monitoring is also a strategic tool that can help you reduce unnecessary energy costs tied to overrunning your HVAC systems to increase ventilation in your spaces. 

Indoor air quality monitoring – What to measure?

Standard measurements for tracking indoor air quality include temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, and formaldehyde. (see more on benefits of these measurements below)

Indoor air quality standards are slowly catching up to our needs

Despite the importance and benefits tied to improved indoor air quality, most commercial buildings and spaces have not evolved as quickly as our needs on this front. 

For example, most building codes tend to focus more on physical comfort rather than keeping indoor air clean and well-circulated, two key components in preventing carbon dioxide build-up, exposure to high formaldehyde levels, or the activation of viruses like Coronavirus, Influenza, and Norovirus. 

Following the impact that poor indoor air quality had throughout the pandemic, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) introduced updated ASHRAE standards in 2023, based on occupancy and room purpose, to guide building managers in designing ventilation systems that better prioritize clean and contaminate-free air. However, very few commercial buildings recognize the new standard as it has not yet been adopted into regulated building codes.

Looking beyond indoor air quality in buildings – Indoor environmental quality

Beyond standard air quality measurements, there are other environmental markers that contribute to creating a more productive and comfortable indoor environment, such as light intensity and noise levels.

Just like temperature, humidity, and carbon dioxide levels, noise and light can play a crucial role in determining the comfort and utilization of a space. 

Measuring noise and light can also be useful in understanding whether a space is doing what it’s expected to do, or not meeting its desired objective. 

Further, these measurements can be integrated into office booking systems to enable employees to find spaces that suit their needs and add value to their overall experience.

Download our Building Intelligence Index to learn more about the value of  indoor air quality and indoor environmental quality. 

By measuring indoor air quality and indoor environmental quality, you can optimize building performance and save on energy consumption without compromising tenant experience. 

Learn more about how to use integrated building analytics to identify and create energy-saving opportunities tailored to your spaces via our Building Intelligence Index

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