Air Duct Cleaning Enquiries


SBS - Sick Building Syndrome is a term used to describe a set of symptoms experienced by workers in a particular environment.  It has been recognised as a phenomenon by the World Health Organisation (WHO) since 1982.

Extensive studies by the HSE have estimated between 30 and 50% of new or refurbished buildings can cause some form of SBS. In addition, recent Australian research has demonstrated that office printers can be a source of indoor air pollutants that require 'specialist expertise' to identify and tackle the cause. There is growing awareness of the importance of indoor air quality and the relationship between 'comfort' and higher productivity levels is strengthening.

Exact causes of Sick Building Syndrome are difficult to define but are likely to involve a combination of physical, environmental and job related factors. Common characteristics are likely to include:

  • High temperature or excessive variations in temperature

  • Very low or very high humidity levels

  • Low level of user control over ventilation, heating and lighting

  • Chemical pollutants such as ozone (photocopiers and laser printers); volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) from items such as new furniture, carpeting and painted surfaces

  • Dust particles or fibres in the air, including ultra-fine dust particles that may be emitted in significant quantities from certain printers and photocopiers. These particles are similar in size to cigarette smoke and have the ability to penetrate deep into the lungs.


The symptoms people experience as a result of Sick Building Syndrome are wide ranging and vary between people. They usually include:


  • Skin problems – dry, itchy, rashes

  • Upper respiratory tract irritations – coughing, dry, itchy or sore nose or throat, stuffy or runny nose

  • Eye irritations – dry, itchy, weepy eyes

  • Neurological – headaches, lethargy, irritability, poor concentration


These symptoms apparently do not cause permanent damage but can have significant impact on those affected and place large costs on the organisation in terms of:

  • Absenteeism and staff turnover

  • Staff efficiency

  • Time and money spent dealing with complaints

  • Staff morale

The benefits of monitoring Indoor air quality include improving staff morale, efficiency, lower levels of absenteeism, better staff retention, and overall a more motivated and satisfied workforce.

HML can carry out independent air quality monitoring within the workplace, reporting back to the client with their recommendations.

Added By: HML Admin on 29th Jun 2011 - 11:20
Number of Views: 5045


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