Indoor Air Quality
The University of Maryland is committed to providing a work environment that is free of recognized hazards and investigate concerns which may be related to
indoor air quality (IAQ).
What affects Indoor Air Quality?
Indoor air quality may be affected by deficiencies in the ventilation system, vapors, dust generated in the work environment, materials infiltrating from outside sources (such as pollen or engine exhaust), or mold associated with moisture-affected materials. For concerns regarding mold, please visit the Mold page.
Such conditions within and around buildings and
structures affects the health and comfort of building occupants. Understanding
and controlling sources of discomfort (e.g., uniformity of temperature, unwelcome
odors) are important for the health of occupants in our buildings.
I have concerns about air quality in my work place. What can I do?
If you have concerns regarding IAQ in your work place, contact the Department of Environmental Safety, Sustainability and Risk (ESSR). ESSR personnel will speak with you to collect information on the issue(s) in the space(s).
Additionally, a service request for an IAQ survey may be placed.
What can I expect during an IAQ survey?
Typical IAQ surveys include:
- Real-time measurements for carbon dioxide, temperature, and relative humidity
- A visual inspection of accessible areas
- Review of the building ventilation
What happens after the IAQ survey is conducted?
ESSR will prepare a written report of survey results, including reported background information, measurements taken, and conclusions/recommendations. Copies of the report will be forwarded to the service requestor and any other associated personnel.
Indoor Air Quality Information
Other emergencies, including gas smells, smoke or unusual strong odors should be reported to Public Safety - call 911 from a campus phone or (301) 405-3333 from any phone, or text #3333.
More information about Indoor Air Quality
“Good” Indoor Air Quality
The qualities of good IAQ should include comfortable temperature and humidity, adequate supply of fresh outdoor air, and control of pollutants from inside and outside of the building.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recommend, assuming slow air movement (less than 40 feet per minute) and 50% indoor relative humidity:
- that the operative temperatures should range from 68.5°F to 75°F in the winter, and from 75°F to 80.5°F in the summer (the difference in temperature ranges between the seasons is largely due to clothing selection).
- that indoor relative humidity be maintained at or below 65% [ANSI/ASHRAE 2017] with no prescribed lower humidity limit.