Many hotels are home to an uninvited and unwelcome guest: poor indoor air quality.

Remedying problems stemming from poor indoor air quality (IAQ), such as bacteria, mold and mildew, can cost hundreds of millions of dollars annually in remediation and repair. Studies also have shown that poor IAQ can adversely affect health.

However, IAQ problems can be prevented through proper design, quality construction and thorough commissioning, according to Barry Abramson in an article to be published in the summer edition of IAQ Applications, published by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) (Atlanta). .

“The hospitality industry can benefit from hvac professionals championing a best-practices approach in both new building design as well as renovation of existing facilities,” Abramson said. Hotels face many IAQ challenges, such as the differing needs for living quarters, ballrooms, food preparation, laundry facilities, and indoor pools, and accommodating smokers and non-smokers. To address these challenges, the hvac industry should focus on ventilation, filtration, pressurization, and maintenance, he said. The industry also should focus on effective maintenance and well-trained building staff to sustain good IAQ.