CO2 Monitoring: Identifying poorly ventilated areas

CO2 Monitoring: Identifying poorly ventilated areas

Further to the reopening of the UK economy following lockdown, Government ministers want offices, pubs, and restaurants to identify poorly ventilated spaces as part of their risk assessment to continue help prevent further outbreaks of COVID-19. Previous Government advice stressing the importance of face-coverings and social distancing has now been amended so that ventilation is now a ‘priority’ for risk assessments. Developments in the scientific understanding of how the virus spreads - mainly through aerosol transmission -  has prompted these changes. 

Quantifying Carbon Dioxide Levels

The most effective way of identifying a ‘poorly-ventilated’ area is to measure the amount of Carbon Dioxide (CO²) within. People exhale CO² when they breathe out and if there is a build up of CO² in an area, it could mean that ventilation needs improving. Fortunately determining the CO² level in an area is very simple. CO² monitors or indoor air quality meters display measure CO² levels in parts per million’, abbreviated ‘ppm’. Outside in the fresh air, CO² levels are typically around 400ppm, meaning that for every 1 million particles of air, approximately 400 of these are CO² particles. Government guidelines advise indoor CO² levels of up to 800ppm to be ‘well ventilated’ whereas a level of 1500ppm should warn operatives to ‘take action to improve ventilation’.

Types Of CO² Monitor

There a two types of CO² monitor, hand-held monitors designed to make spot measurements and those designed to continuously monitor CO² levels, typically mounted on a shelf, a desk or a wall. These days both types of monitors contain NDIR (non-dispersive infrared) sensors to measure CO² levels. NDIR sensors are not only recommended by the Government for monitoring CO² levels, but they have other benefits such as long service periods (up to 15 years), being maintenance free (they can be calibrated in fresh air by the user) and of a high accuracy.

With CO² monitoring likely to become the ‘norm’ in risk assessments and health and safety policies to identify areas of poor ventilation, our expertise is on offer to help with any enquiries that you might have in choosing the correct monitor for your application.

Simply call us on 0113 248 99 66, email sales@test-meter.co.uk or contact us online.

We currently offer quantity discounts for councils, schools & the NHS on CO² Monitors. Please contact our sales team for more information.


Sources:

https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/equipment-and-machinery/air-conditioning-and-ventilation/identifying-poorly-ventilated-areas.htm

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/covid-ventilation-co2-monitoring-equipment-rules-b1884095.html