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Ventilation

Ventilation

Ventilation is the air exchange in indoor rooms. Air exchange is required to guarantee fresh and clean air in rooms, and to keep room air pollution on a safe level. If air exchange is missing, indoor air becomes polluted rather fast. Depending on the work specifics, the main air polluters are employees themselves or some used devices. When humans breathe in, they consume the oxygen from the air and exhale carbon dioxide, which creates fatigue if its’ level exceeds the marginal rate. Proper ventilation in moist rooms is also necessary because excess humidity damages health and could damage the building as well. Also, ventilation extracts bad smells and excess dust. Manufacturing buildings must extract chemical smells and dust accompanying the production process, which are dangerous to humans.

Workplaces must have sufficient air exchange – the correct level depends on the room and works done in it. Fresh and clean air should be directed into the building from outside, and distributed into work rooms. It is important that the air intake occurs away from chimneys or other air openings which could pollute the intake air.

The ventilation system should extract warm and moist air from the rooms, mix it with fresh air, and provide sufficient amount of fresh air to employees without creating any draughts or discomfort. If devices are used in work rooms that generate heat, dust, fumes, steam or other internal air pollution while operating, more air is needed to guarantee sufficient air exchange.

Sufficient air exchange can, in some cases, be achieved with windows or air channels, but where a more sufficient air exchange is needed, a regularly maintained mechanical forced ventilation must be used.

Air exchange is one of the factors that the employee’s thermal comfort depends on. Thermal comfort constitutes of environmental factors (e.g. moisture, heat sources at the workplace) and factors depending on the employee (e.g. clothing, physical difficulty of the work). Different preferences of different employees make it hard to determine the internal temperature that would fit all employees. As a rule, workplaces without physical labour (offices) should have a higher internal temperature than workplaces where work is physically more demanding.

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