Air Purifiers Reopen Schools Safely and Sooner

School Districts Can Implement Air Purifiers To Mitigate COVID-19

With school districts still planning to reopen all over the country amidst the COVID pandemic, parents are concerned if it is safe for their children to go back to school. 

Some school districts are moving towards a permanent or semi-permanent hybrid learning model to address these fears. Where children are taught partly in classroom settings and partly through online learning, other districts allow their children back to school while imposing restrictions, COVID mitigation policies, or even shutting down when there is a COVID case.There are so many things a district needs to consider in its reopening strategy, but the safety of its students, teachers, and administration is their top priority. One of the easiest, most efficient, and cost-effective COVID-19 mitigation solutions a school should implement are air purifiers to help kids return to school safely. 

This article will discuss how air purifiers help protect students, teachers, and administration against COVID and how to use air purifiers to keep children safe. 

City School District Soccer Field

Are All Air Purifiers Safe to Be Around?

There are some valid concerns over health and air purifiers. Some air purifiers emit ozone, which can be hazardous to our health. Therefore, schools need to consider purchasing air purifiers that do not emit ozone. The air purifier, such as Sanalife's Guardian Beyond Air, also needs to reduce respiratory droplets with SARS-CoV-2 particles and eliminate particles of 0.3 microns in size, which can help reduce transmission COVID-19.

In a previous blog article, we discussed ozone generators' increased health risks associated with their use. Devices like bipolar ionizers and electrostatic sprayers can remove VOCs, smoke, and other particulate matter from the air. But they also emit hazardous ozone, which can be detrimental to your health. Be cautious. 

Instead, we recommend air purification with True HEPA filtration, UVC light technology, PCO technology, and ActivePure Technology. They are safer and more effective at mitigating SARS-CoV-2 viral particles and other airborne contaminants without adding harmful ozone. 

How Can Air Purifiers Protect Students Against COVID?

The Department of Education and CDC recommends using air purification as part of a school district's strategy for safely reopening elementary and secondary schools. 

Portable air purifiers are powerful devices, ranging in technologies, that purify or clean the air in many different ways. Sanalife is the only provider of air purification systems capable of covering district-wide coverage. Whether its a school bus, classroom, gymnasium, or locker room, our multi-stage ActivePure air purifiers include UVC light disinfection, HEPA filtrationactivated carbon, negative ionization, and more. 

Air purifiers like our Guardian Beyond AirHydroxyl Blaster, or Pure and Clean also come with ActivePure®. An air purification technology can proactively reduce bacteria, mold, fungus, viruses such as SARS-CoV-2, and other airborne and surface contaminants.

ActivePure® Technology is an active purifier technology that puts back into the air the same therapeutic molecules that make our outdoor air safe – molecules that actively neutralize pathogens and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as they enter the space. ActivePure® provides a layer of protection that reduces airborne and surface pathogens quickly and effectively. 

In extensive independent laboratory testing, ActivePure® Technology has been proven to reduce many airborne and surface contaminants and pathogens significantly and can protect your children from the following pathogens: 

  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Staphylococcus Aureus
  • Aspergillus Niger Endospores (Toxic Black Mold Surrogate)
  • H1N1 Influenza (Swine Flu)
  • H5N8 Influenza (Bird Flu)
  • MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant)
  • Bacillus globigii (C. Difficile And Anthrax Surrogate)
  • MS2 Bacteriophage - RNA Virus
  • Staphylococcus epidermidis
  • Phi-X174 - DNA Virus
  • Erwinia herbicola
  • Listeria Monocytogenes
  • Escherichia Coli (E. Coli)
  • Candida Auris (Fungus)
  • Sclerotinia Sclerotiorum
  • Legionella Pnuemophila
  • Aspergillus Versicolor
  • Clostridium Difficile
  • Salmonella enterica

No matter which type of viruses are spreading in your schools, air purifiers can help reduce airborne virus particles and transmission of virus particles on surfaces. 

And by running these devices consistently in schools, you are drastically reducing the rate at which kids become infected with viruses, spreading illnesses and colds, which reduces the overall rate of days missed due to sickness. 

Kindergarden Classroom Colorful

Considerations In Choosing An Air Purifier  

Air purifiers protect students but choosing the right set of devices device in your district will depend on several factors. Some of those include:

  • The size of the classrooms (including square footage and cubic feet, ceiling height).
  • The surfaces in the classrooms.
  • The current heating, air conditioning, and ventilation systems (HVAC) specifications.
  • Has your HVAC system been upgraded, or will it be upgraded?
  • Is cleaning staff available to help with filter changes?
  • The level of transmission risk in your school(s).
  • Long-term business drivers.
  • Current air changes per hour (ACH) and air circulation throughout your school.
  • The number of students who will attend your school.
  • Number of students in your classrooms
  • Number of school buses and students on the buses
  • Ceiling height 
  • Number of rooms
  • Do you want portable systems?
  • Mounted systems in the ceiling tiles? 
  • Coverage on your school buses?
  • Install air purifiers in your HVAC systems?

Air purifiers work by circulating air. Therefore, to determine the purifier unit that is ideal for the size and occupancy of your space, you’ll have to have a general understanding of the square footage of the space and cubic feet. 

So how do you measure cubic feet of a room? 

  • From feet: length (ft) × width (ft) × height (ft) = cubic feet.
  • From inches: length (in) × width (in) × height (in) ÷ 1728 = cubic feet.
  • From yards: length (yd) × width (yd) × height (yd) × 27 = cubic feet.
  • From cm: length (cm) × width (cm) × height (cm) ÷ 28316.85 = cubic feet.

Measuring cubic feet is as simple as getting the square feet and accounting for the room's height. This will help you determine the unit that will clean your space effectively. 

Suppose you want to implement one in the cafeteria building for safe lunches. In that case, you’ll have to account for the extended ceilings, ceiling fans, potential ventilation, and the number of students in this space at a given time.

Healthy School Lunch And Snack Time

Another unit of efficiency used in air cleaning is air changes per hour or ACH. It is recommended schools have a minimum of 6 ACH. By adding in a portable unit in most rooms, you can increase the ACH by one or more (depending on the size of the room). 

Determining the Best Air Purification System for Your School

As mentioned, there are several things to consider when adding air purification systems to your district. There is no one size fits all solution in COVID-19 mitigation, and School Districts should consider a multi-pronged approach to air and surface disinfection in most cases. 

While many schools and districts have solely chosen air purifiers, you can do more to help mitigate transmission in your schools. Consider these additional tips for improving air quality and indoor environmental quality and reducing COVID transmission:

Use A MERV 13 Filter In An Existing HVAC system:

ASHRAE, CDC, and OSHA guidelines recommend MERV 13 filters to improve indoor air quality (IAQ) and reduce building occupant exposure to COVID-19. However, MERV 13 can limit airflow in HVAC systems. Ensure your HVAC system(s) can handle the MERV-rated filter you put in for better ventilation. Be sure to use a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter.

Consider Upgrading HVAC and Installing Induct Air Purification system:

Induct Air Purification systems come in numerous forms, from Hydroxyl Generators to Needlepoint Bi-Polar Ionization (NPBI) systems. Safe to use and UL Certified, induct systems can help reduce airborne pathogens and improve the performance of existing HVAC systems. Consider our ActivePure Induct Guardian.

Implement UV-C Disinfection Robot:

UVC robots can deliver fast, chemical-free, hospital-grade air and surface disinfection, the highest level of disinfection to any building through high-power 254 mm wave UV-C lights. These autonomous UV robots offer high-tech LIDAR room mapping, tablet control, and advanced safety features for simple operation and use.

What is the Best Air-Cleaning Option For Your School?

Reopening your school district is an arduous task and planning your reopening strategy is not easy. Ensuring the safety of its students, teachers, and administration is your top priority. Air purifiers are easy to implement, effective, and cost-efficient. 

Sanalife is here to provide you with a custom solution to meet the needs of your school district and help your students, teachers, and faculty return to school safely. 

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