Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Assessment
Occupants in a building may experience acute symptoms related to the air quality inside the building and when they leave the building the symptoms may subside. This scenario is often referred to as “Sick Building Syndrome”. EPA has a Sick Building Syndrome fact and guidance document that provides some good information regarding the symptoms and causes.
Identifying such problems related to indoor air quality issues can be quite challenging. The array of variables that exists are abundant. ETA can help you by performing a comprehensive assessment of your home or property to identify the pollutant sources. The IAQ assessment we perform will possess a thorough walk thru inspection of your property along with the collection of parameter data such as temperature, relative humidity, CO2, and CO measurements. The inspection will assist in the collection of data needed to determination if an air quality testing plan needs to be implemented.
Keep in mind that not all properties need an air quality testing plan. More times than not, the problems associated with indoor air quality are resolved by simple measures taken to eliminate the pollutant sources. The IAQ assessment will help identify the problems and we will provide the property owners or occupant’s recommendations on how to resolve the pollutant issues.
Common indoor air pollutants
- Chemical Contaminants
- Combustion Contaminants
Formaldehyde is a widely used industrial chemical used to manufacture building materials and many common household products. It is also a by-product of combustion and certain other natural processes. Due to its prevalence, Formaldehyde may be present in high concentrations both indoors and outdoors.
Formaldehyde can cause irritation of the skin, eyes, nose and throat. High levels of exposure may cause some types of cancers. People with respiratory illnesses such as asthma, bronchitis, or are pregnant can be at a higher risk to having effects from formaldehyde.
ETA can perform formaldehyde testing in your home or building. We will determine if there are high concentrations or not and will identify possible sources.
Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s)
VOCs include many different chemicals, some of which may have short- and long-term adverse health effects. Per the EPA, concentrations of many VOCs are consistently higher indoors (up to ten times higher) than outdoors. VOCs are emitted by numerous common products found in homes and buildings.
Most common organic chemicals are widely used as ingredients in household products. Paints, varnishes and wax all contain organic solvents, as do many cleaning, disinfecting, cosmetic, and hobby products. Fuels are also made up of organic chemicals. All of these products can release organic compounds while you are using them, and, to some degree, when they are stored.
Health Effects include
- Dizziness and Loss of coordination
- Eyes, nose and throat irritation
- Damage to liver, kidney and central nervous system
- ETA uses the most advanced technology to test for VOC’s and will determine if there is a problem in your home or building. If we detect a problem we will work with you and provide recommendations to help manage the problem.
ETA offers comprehensive radon testing. Radon is a naturally occurring gas formed from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in rock, soil and water. During this process, radon gets into the air you inhale. Radon is a contaminant that affects indoor air quality. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, radon is the second most frequent cause of lung cancer, after cigarette smoking, causing 21,000 lung cancer deaths per year in the United States. The US EPA has recommended radon levels in air and drinking water. North Carolina Radon levels are directly related to the underlying rock type and vary throughout the State.
View an online map on radon zones in the U.S.
Well Water Testing: Uranium, Radon and Gross Alpha/Beta
Radon and Uranium are odorless, colorless, and tasteless. The only way to know their presence is to have a certified lab test a water sample from your well. These chemicals are naturally occurring in granite and they are not caused by humans or industry. Drinking high levels of these naturally occurring chemicals can cause adverse health effects including kidney failure and certain forms of cancer. If you would like to find out if you have elevated levels of Radon, Uranium, or Gross Alpha/Beta particles in your well, please contact us today to have your well professionally tested.
Laboratory Water Test
ETA offers comprehensive drinking water test. The drinking water samples will be analyzed for Total Coliform, E. coli, Lead, Nitrate, Nitrite, and Turbidity plus Iron, Manganese, and pH. These test are analyzed by a laboratory and your results are compared to EPA’s National Primary and Secondary drinking water regulations. The test will give home and building owners assurance of the quality of water they are drinking.
ETA’s Indoor Environmental Team is compassionate about indoor environmental issues. We thrive on solving problems and helping customers live a healthier and more comfortable life indoors. Our team members have education disciplines in Environmental Health, Industrial Hygiene, Environmental Science, and Indoor Environmental Consulting. The team possesses a broad knowledge base regarding indoor built environments and the problems that may exist. They are members of the Indoor Air Quality Association and ASTM.
ETA has been performing environmental consulting services in air quality for over 35 years and now their Indoor Environmental Team is value added to their already outstanding quality service.