Assessing Indoor Air Quality in a Dental Practice
Our most recent project took us to Ilkeston, where our client invited us to attend his dental practice with the objective of carrying out an assessment of the indoor air quality in relation to biological contaminants.
The building has a history of long term condensation and mould contamination in the back staircase leading to the upper floor. Prior to our investigation, the root cause of the condensation was identified and remediated. No other damp or mould related issued had been reported in the building since this. At the time of our investigation no adverse health symptoms had been reported either.
How do we find out if poor indoor air quality is to blame?
In order to conduct a thorough assessment of the indoor air quality, our surveyor had to take a number of factors into consideration, such as; airborne moulds and moisture in the air/building materials. Any airborne moulds were collected using a high flow 1600 air sampling pump onto vesta spore trap cassettes. These samples will allow us to get an accurate number of airborne moulds in the property. The results will reveals whether or not these numbers are raised compared to the normal amount for a property with adequate indoor air quality.
In order to assess whether there was any moisture in the air/building materials, our surveyor used a technique called Moisture Mapping. This allows him to locate specific areas with elevated levels of moisture and hopefully pinpoint the root cause of the moisture. To investigate the full extent of the moisture, our surveyor used specialist equipment for the job, a Hydromette HB30 moisture meter and a Tramex Moisture encounter plus.
What did sampling and moisture mapping reveal?
In conclusion the air quality assessment in relation to biological contaminants indicated that the indoor air quality is not currently affected by an elevated number of fungal spores. The number of fungal spores detected within the property are representative of normal indoor conditions.
When our surveyor conducted a visual inspection of the property, he could not find any visible evidence of rising/penetrating damp, condensation or fungal contamination. When he investigated further using specialist equipment this also indicated that the property is not suffering with any active service leaks nor elevated levels of moisture. Taking all of this into account, it is our surveyor’s opinion that all employees working in the dental practice are not at risk of exposure to fungal elements and the indoor air quality can be described as adequate.