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The importance of air cleaning to stop the spread of COVID-19

5 min read
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The pandemic has emphasised the need for excellent safety and hygiene. As a result, many buildings are embracing air cleaning technology to limit the spread of infection indoors.

With social restrictions lifted in many countries around the world, a growing number of people are returning to work, school and other social activities.

Despite this, we cannot ignore the disruption that COVID-19 (Sars Cov-2) is still causing. As people congregate in offices and classrooms without adequate ventilation, highly infectious viruses – like Coronavirus – have a greater chance of spreading.

To help limit airborne transmission, more buildings are turning to virus air cleaners to keep conditions inside fresh and healthy.

What is air cleaning and how does it work?

Air cleaning units work to renew indoor air quality by constantly filtering the air.

To do this, commercial air cleaners draw in and purify stale air by forcing it through a pre-filter and HEPA filter. These devices effectively remove contaminants from the air to keep conditions fresh indoors.

This technology is highly efficient and cost-effective, as it allows buildings to create and maintain comfortable conditions without letting valuable heat energy escape. In addition, these systems are simple to install as they require no special ducting or ventilation.

Infographic showing how air cleaners work to improve air quality

How can air cleaning reduce the spread of coronavirus?

When we talk, cough and exhale, we send out thousands of microscopic droplets that form a cloud-like aerosol. If someone is ill, these particles can contain bacteria and germs, such as COVID-19.

Without a robust air cleaning unit, this stale air builds up, increasing the concentration of airborne viruses in the atmosphere. However, by adopting portable air cleaners, your building can reduce the volume of unwanted contaminants in the atmosphere by constantly refreshing and recirculating the air inside the room.

Image of the Heylo HL 800 air cleaning process removing dust and airborne viruses and germs

Are all air purifiers effective against COVID?

Although all air scrubbers aim to make the indoor atmosphere healthier, not every unit is capable of capturing Coronavirus particles from the air. The type of HEPA filter used inside will dictate whether or not the device can reduce the risk of airborne transmission.

As well as that, the power of the device must be suitable for the size of the room you want to filter. To create a zone with clean air, you ideally need a system whose air output exceeds the volume of the room by 3 to 5 times per hour.

How do I choose which air cleaning units to buy?

Now that we have discussed the growing importance of air cleaning, how do you choose the ideal solution for your needs?

First, ask yourself:

What type of HEPA filter do I need for COVID?

As discussed previously, not every air filter is built equal. To capture and kill COVID-19, you need an air scrubber up to the task.

A HEPA H14 filter is designed to eliminate airborne bacteria. This is because the pores are small enough to prevent coronavirus particles down to 0.3μm from passing through at a rate of 99% or more.

Filters not certified to this standard, while able to filter dust and pollutants, likely will not be effective against viral aerosols. That is why at Heylo our HL 400 and HL 800 air cleaners incorporate these powerful HEPA H14 filters.

HEPA filters are also capable of sifting out microscopic particles with a diameter of more than 20 nanometres, including bacterial mould, dust, allergens, and several viruses.

Choosing the right size unit and filters to clean COVID-19 from a room or workplace - Heylo infographic

What size room do I want to purify?

The size of the room will also dictate what unit is best for your application. For efficient air purification, the amount of airflow must be at least 3 times the room volume per hour. The air exchange rate indicates how often an air purifier should circulate the air in a room every hour.

This is important as if your equipment is unable to renew air quick enough, unhealthy pollutants and virus particles can still build up even when the unit is in operation.

Applications and environments for virus air cleaning solutions

As COVID-19 continues to cause costly disruptions to industries and supply chains all around the world, the importance of clean air cannot be understated.

With a suitable solution in place, you can create a controlled environment full of healthy, fresh air – this can benefit your business, shop, hospital or school in a number of crucial ways.

Benefits of using a Heylo virus air cleaning units to purify air in private and commercial spaces

Hospitals

Hospitals have played a crucial role for millions of people throughout the pandemic. However, for many establishments, it has not been possible to adequately ventilate wards.

By installing a number of air cleaning devices throughout the space, the air quality in these environments can be significantly improved. Not only can this limit the concentration of Coronavirus particles in the air, but it can also reduce the risk of other airborne infections.

With fewer nurses, doctors and surgeons off ill, your hospital can strengthen its response to COVID and work more effectively at treating those in need. As well as benefitting employee safety, clean air makes your hospital a healthier place for everyone – especially patients.

Schools

During the height of the pandemic, many schools were forced to close. As a consequence, the quality of student learning was impacted, and a huge number of parents were forced to split their time between homeschooling and work.

With the passage of time, it was evident that a more permanent, sustainable solution was needed to ensure pupils could stay in schools safely, with a lower risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.

In response, a growing number of schools around the world are adopting air cleaning technology to reduce the presence of Coronavirus in the classroom air and allow students to return to class on a consistent basis. Additionally, with fewer interruptions in school, pupils can better focus on their work.

To learn more about this, read how our Heylo air cleaners have actively supported schools across Europe to create the best possible conditions for students and staff.

Commercial workplaces

Because dozens of people can spend several hours in a single enclosed office space, illnesses can take hold quickly, and send large swathes of your team off sick at once. This puts your employees’ health and wellbeing in jeopardy, and can have a significant effect on your organisation’s ability to meet deadlines and hit targets.

To protect against costly disruptions throughout the office, air cleaning units can work to capture and kill airborne viruses and rid the air of unhealthy pollutants.

As well as boosting employee attendance, improved air quality can have a positive impact on worker satisfaction. This may lead to happier, more productive teams throughout the office.

Retail & Supermarkets

Many shops rely on footfall to turn a profit. Yet, even as social restrictions ease, some shoppers are wary about visits to brick and mortar retailers.

To boost public safety, air cleaning technology can help create and maintain safe, healthy conditions in your shop without the need for natural or mechanical ventilation.

Not only can this reassure apprehensive customers that shopping with you is safe, but the comfortable conditions may also encourage people to stay in your store for longer. As an added benefit, this can be done at a low cost to both your bottom line and the environment as you are able to retain the valuable heat energy inside.

Restaurants

To create a comfortable atmosphere for your guests, you want a quiet, warm and clean environment where customers can enjoy their meals. If pungent odours and stale air are allowed to build up, it may sour visitors’ experiences.

To alleviate these concerns while still maintaining the desired ambience, air cleaners are ideal. Not only can they be relatively quiet, but this technology works to remove off-putting pollutants and smells.

As well as that, by constantly renewing the air several times every hour, you help limit the spread of illness in your restaurant - ideal for smaller venues where large groups of people come together in close proximity.

Why businesses choose Heylo virus air cleaners

Our unique approach and rich climate control heritage at Heylo have helped us produce a range of robust, reliable and sustainable particle removal solutions in use the world over.

To illustrate the effectiveness of our units, 2000 of our HL 800 air cleaners have been installed in over 1000 classrooms in the City of Hamburg to help them get students back to school safely.

Heylo mobile virus air cleaners product showcase comparing the HL 400 and HL 800 models

This technology was a perfect fit for the schools’ needs as the HEPA H14 filters can effectively capture COVID-19 particles in the air. Furthermore, our units operate quietly up to 42dB(A), allowing classes to proceed with minimal disruptions.

As an additional benefit, our purifiers are capable of renewing the air in a classroom 5 times every hour – this ensures pupils are breathing clean, fresh air at all times.

If you need additional guidance choosing the right solution for your needs, get in touch using the contact form below.

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