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Printer Health Effects

A recent study by scientists from the American Chemical Society reports that airborne particles from some printers can be inhaled deep into your lungs and may pose a health hazard. A similar report is also on Yahoo.

To improve the indoor air quality, there are three main actions that should be taken. In many cases not all of these can be accomplished but any of these will improve the indoor air. The first is source control. If the source can be identified such as a printer or copy machine, remove it from where people are located. This is similar to being allergic to your cat and solving the problem by getting rid of the cat... not always a possibility.

The second action is dilution with fresh air from the outside. The HVAC system should pull in air from the outside and "condition" it to remove high humidity levels and airborne particles. In addition, the HVAC system should provide sufficient circulation to prevent stagnate air from forming in work areas. This area is a concern from the study since the building did not provide sufficient circulation to overcome the increased levels of airborne particles from the printers.

The third step is the removal of particles. The general consensus of the leading indoor air quality experts is to use HEPA filtration (i.e. American Lung Association, indoor air quality association, etc). HEPA filters are the most effective in removing the smaller sized particles that can travel to your lungs and cause respiratory issues. More info on this can be found in our previous blogs.