From office jobs to working in dusty warehouses, each work environment provides ways for us to improve our air and water quality—and at whatever level you work, you can instigate these improvements with some simple tips and some communication with upper management. Occupational Safety & Health Administration currently has no standard regulations for indoor air quality, but categories for improvement include humidity levels, mold from water damage, temperature, lack of air circulation, and chemical detections.
We don’t generally consider temperature and humidity as environmental cautions, but these show how important your comfort and safety should be at your workplace, and how these common annoyances can lead to more serious problems like mold.
In both offices and warehouses, mold can be a serious health hazard for employees. Employees with asthma, lung problems, and allergies are more prone to health issues, and identifying potential mold sources is the best way to prevent your air quality from being compromised. Mold spores often form on the inside of walls due to plumbing leaks or other water leaks, so it can be difficult to detect if your having mold problems.
A musty smell can be one identifying factor, but you can also speak to your safety department or manager to purchase rather affordable mold detection kits. However, these can’t identify the source, but can only tell if you have a mold problem. To discover the source, a mold inspector should be hired to find the source of the mold and the source of the moisture causing the mold.
OSHA considers humidity a potential environmental risk in your workplace. For example, an especially humid workplace could result in mold formation. To determine whether your office is too humid or not humid enough, contact your safety department to look into purchasing a humidity monitor. These can run for as cheap as $15.00. After determining the level of humidity, look into options such as industrial humidifiers or dehumidifiers, depending on your needs.
Proper Working Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Your safety administrator should be continually checking and replacing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your office and warehouse. If you’re concerned about the air quality in your workplace, consider leading an air and water safety team that looks into issues like carbon monoxide detection and other health concerns.
Flushing Your Tap
Has the tap water at your office ever been brown, or tasted of chlorine, left white residue on glasses, or had black specks inside? Each of these is the result of water picking up particles in the pipe system, and the best way to increase your quality of water in a short period of time is to flush your system. For this, leave your tap running from three minutes to two days—as this will flush those extra particles and minerals and chlorine backups. But you really should be using a refrigerator water filter.
There are two categories possible to improve the tap water at your workplace. If your office has a refrigerator that dispenses water or ice, the refrigerator will have a filter that needs to be checked and replaced annually. This is a small, key step that often goes unnoticed in workplace refrigerators.
The next option is to use a water filter pitcher that you’d have to refill at least once a week, depending on usage. Most of the home pitchers you’ve likely seen are smaller in size, but companies do provide larger filter pitchers that can hold much more water. This might be a better option for your office.