Last Updated on May 12, 2023 by Charlotte HVAC Specialist
The last few warm, then hot, weeks of school for the spring feel long and grueling anyway. Summer break is almost here. There might be tests or exams still to go. Then, especially around this area, you might have warm, hot, humid classrooms. It was probably worse a generation, two or three ago. But it’s still an issue today. Air conditioning, HVAC systems, and indoor air quality are important factors for a good, healthy learning environment in our area schools.
There are more than 100,000 schools for K-12 students in the U.S. The average age of an elementary, middle, or high school building is over 40 years old. HVAC systems might not be at the top of the usual list when it comes to education spending. Safe, healthy, comfortable, and quiet environments do play a factor in good teaching and education. Efficient HVAC systems and designs help improve academic outcomes and health issues through proper indoor air quality, ventilation, and of course, a consistent climate, inside schools.
Reports have shown students who are in buildings with toxins in the environment have a lower GPA than students who are in schools with better indoor air environments. Not only will bad environments inside school buildings have an academic impact, they will cause more health problems, which leads to absences, and more educational challenges, and it’s a cyclic issue.
More on Indoor Air Quality
It’s estimated about 15,000 schools in the country have poor indoor air quality. This means about eight million children are in schools in this state.
Anyone, but children more especially, can have many ill effects and symptoms from hours spent in poor indoor air. Symptoms and problems include inflamed eyes, nose, and throat, upper respiratory system infections, queasiness, lightheadedness, bad headaches, fatigue, and drowsiness. It’s easy to understand that sick and poor-feeling students and teachers won’t learn or perform well. Just in relation to asthma, the American Lung Association finds children in the U.S. miss more than 10 million school days because of asthma made worse by poor indoor air quality.
Ventilation and Air Flow
Ventilation for any building, even more for large buildings with many people in them for hours at a time, is designed to remove pollutants or contaminants from the air inside. Part of an HVAC system – the V – is ventilation. It’s just as important as the heating and cooling jobs.
Contaminants come from internal and external sources. Skin, clothes, makeup, fragrances, cleaning products, building materials and more can be inside the building. Proper ventilation will handle it fine. Old, no or failing ventilation will leave it in and air quality will get worse.
Children actually breathe in more air based on body weight than adults. This fact makes ventilation for schools more important. Then, you can factor in most schools have less space per person than most business or commercial buildings, so any poor air quality is more of an effect on more people faster in most educational buildings in the U.S.
There may be even more trouble due to the high expense of HVAC systems for large buildings. If educational systems have budget constraints along with old facilities or systems, all these issues may combine.
How an A+ HVAC Helps in Schools
Here’s a summary of four big reasons an effective HVAC system and good air quality are important in schools.
When somebody has been exposed to high temperatures their brain quits focusing and concentrates on cooling down the body. It’s instinctual. It’s going to take over compared to a test, a lesson, or anything else going on. This indicates in a classroom that students will not focus as much as they should under the right air and climate conditions. The mind works best at a good temperature level. By having higher concentration, children will function and learn better which results in higher test results and education overall.
- Good Indoor Air Quality
A good heating, ventilation, and air system helps everything be better and easier in a classroom. Looking at one specific and vital function, the air needs to be clear of contaminants and toxins in any building, then more so with a lot of people in it for long spans of time. Students and teachers will be healthier with improved air quality. There are specific health issues children and adults may have which depend even more on ventilation and air quality being at a good standard.
- Making Progress
If students have better focus and make more progress in a class, a school year, or even though the course of multiple grades, in small part because of a proper HVAC system and indoor climate, it means lessons and assignments can become more challenging and a higher level. There will be fewer disruptions or lessons which need to be repeated. A good, comfortable, safe climate even helps because students and teachers are in a better mood more often.
- Test Results
Studies have found when students are in schools that overheat often, they are about 12% more likely to fail tests. It goes all the way to graduation rates and finds a difference of about 2% in graduations. If temperatures are too hot or too cold, or air quality is poor, there isn’t the same concentration on doing well in a class.
At South End Heating and Air, we specialize in HVAC and furnace repair, call us for a free consult. We’ll evaluate your system and help make recommendations for optimum value. After all, we want to keep you cool all summer long and warm in the winter. Just schedule a visit with one of our technicians to talk about how we can help with your heating needs. Would you like to learn more options our techs can help you with? Give us a call 704-684-5339.