The primary mission of the Environmental, Health & Safety Department’s Indoor Air Quality Program is to ensure a healthy, high-quality learning and teaching environment for Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. To achieve this goal, the E,H&S Department incorporates the cooperation of the campus community and participation of the Facilities Services trade specialists as outline in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Tools for Schools Program and Texas Department of State Health Services.
Report IAQ Concerns:
Office: 825-5555 Fax: 825-5556 Email: EHS@tamucc.edu
The IAQ Profile focuses on:
- Conducting an assessment inspection on IAQ-related concerns.
- Determine possible pollutant sources throughout the affected area or building.
- Reporting items that need to be repaired, adjusted, cleaned or replaced to Facilities Services.
- EPA Indoor Air Quality Information
Purpose: To fix or mitigate all existing or potential IAQ problems in order to protect the health, comfort, and productivity of a building’s occupants and staff.
Using the information from the IAQ Profile to identify current practices or conditions that could, or already do, adversely affect indoor air quality. By correcting these conditions and modifying these practices, you will establish a good IAQ baseline in your building.
- Conduct an assessment inspection.
- Look for IAQ problem indicators including odors, dirty or unsanitary conditions, visible fungal growth, mold or mildew, moisture in appropriate locations, staining or discoloration of building materials, smoke damage, presence of toxic substances, poorly-maintained filters, potential for soil gas entry, unusual noises from equipment, leaks, uneven temperatures, overcrowding, personal air cleaning devices (ion generators, ozone generators or portable filtration units), personal fans, and blocked or re-directed vents/diffusers.
- Take notes on a floor plan during the walk-through and identify potential or existing problems indicating a need for either close monitoring or corrective action.
- Inspect HVAC condition and operations.
- List components that need to be repaired, adjusted, cleaned or replaced.
General Strategies to Correct IAQ Problems:
- Identify sources, then remove or reduce the source, seal or cover the source, or modify the environment.
- Improve ventilation in order to provide outside air to occupants and to dilute and/or exhaust pollutants.
- Improve air filtration to clean air from outside and inside the building.
- Control occupant exposure to pollutants through administrative approaches such as scheduling contaminant-producing activities during unoccupied periods.
Facility Operations and Maintenance
Purpose: To maintain and operate your building to prevent IAQ problems.
- IAQ can be affected both by the quality of maintenance and by the materials and procedures used in operating and maintaining the building's components. Keeping IAQ in mind when you plan for operations and maintenance is a good way to prevent IAQ problems.
- Inadequate housekeeping can cause IAQ problems - keep your building clean, keep your building dry.
- A preventive maintenance program is an effective tool for improving IAQ. This should include monitoring, inspecting and cleaning HVAC components such as outside air intakes, outside air dampers, air filters, drain pans, heating and cooling coils, the interior of air handling units, fan motors, belts, and air humidification.
Maintaining cooperative relations with tenants and occupants. Communicate with tenants/occupants about their role in maintaining good IAQ
Purpose: To open communication lines between building owners and tenants/occupants so that tenants/occupants can become part of the solution to IAQ problems.
- Early and frequent communication with occupants is important both to prevent IAQ problems from occurring and to secure their cooperation when solving existing problems. It is important for building occupants to understand that their activities can create indoor air quality problems and that their cooperation is critical for maintaining good IAQ in their building.