Preparing Your Building for BREEAM Indoor Air Quality Testing

Clients, often ask us how they can best prepare their commercial buildings for BREEAM Indoor Air Quality Testing? to try and help clients pass their indoor air quality testing, we send out a comprehensive indoor air quality checklist, with every fee proposal

Here is a quick summary of what action you need to undertake to prepare your building for the IAQT testing:

Restrict construction 24 hours before the indoor air quality test:

Try and ensure minimal construction works at least 24 hours prior to the indoor air quality testing. No new volatiles (VOC’s) should be introduced such as decorative finishes including water-based coatings, silicon seals, adhesives and others sealants. Failure to adhere to this guidance usually end in IAQT failures.


Building flush out prior to the VOC test

Flush out the inside air of the building with as much outside air as possible. This step can be accomplished by simply opening natural ventilation windows and/or running the HVAC systems. The building should be ventilated with 100% outside air. The building should be thoroughly ventilated for 24-48 hours prior to our attendance.

Ensure finishes are fully installed prior to the IAQT: 

All interior finishes should be installed, including but not limited carpeting, doors, paint, files. Movable furnishings such workstations and partitions are not required but should be in place at the time of the test.

Restrict cleaning prior to the IAQT: 

All activities likely to introduce volatiles into the indoor environment should be restricted. This applies to cleaning, the use of air fresheners, window, surface or other cleaners, polishes, waxes and other surface treatments.


What happens if we fail the BREEAM Indoor air quality testing?

If we undertake the indoor quality testing and the building fails as the compounds are found to exceed the prescribed limits, to claim the BREEAM credit for air quality it must be identified that appropriate measures have or will be undertaken in accordance with the Indoor Air Quality Plan. Also, within our indoor quality test report we will make recommendations to reduce the levels to fall within the limits.

It’s worth noting that some compounds such as Formaldehyde, can persist in furniture for up to 6 months. VOCs can accumulate in buildings from a variety of sources, there are many cases where new build occupancy starts whilst VOCs are still high.

We can undertake BREEAM Indoor Air Quality Testing to your project

Here at APT we have significant experience in carrying out post-construction Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) testing across London and the Southeast. We are familiar with the stringent methods that are specified under BREEAM Hea02.

Our expert team will also provide free advice and guidance to your project manager to help to create the correct environment for the air quality tests, which is essential if you want to pass at the first attempt.

Call us on 01525 303905 or email us on about our Indoor Air Quality Testing services. We are here to help! Alternatively, please visit our contact page here.