Why a classroom without a ventilation system is not acceptable

Stiebel Eltron explains why a classroom without a ventilation system is not acceptable.

Ventilation is the order of the day. Extracting potentially virus-contaminated air and bringing in fresh air minimises the risk of COVID-19 infection in enclosed spaces. For classrooms, this means opening two opposite windows for at least five minutes at least every 20 minutes. This is organisationally demanding and requires a very high degree of discipline. Quite apart from that, open windows at low outside temperatures mean a massive loss of heat energy, dust input and often noise pollution, for example from the road. Not to mention students trying to study in cold environments in their coats and hats on due to these improvised coronavirus protection measures.

While a technical solution for all these problems, namely ventilation systems, has long been standard in modern office buildings and is increasingly being used in residential buildings, they are missing precisely where they are urgently needed every day: in school buildings

Ventilation systems can be retrofitted relatively easily in any classroom with an outside wall. They offer many more advantages than “just” reducing the risk of infection: the fresh air also counteracts an excessively high CO2 concentration in the room and the resulting health problems such as tiredness, headaches and lack of concentration. The costs for a ventilation device including installation are less than £7,200 per room. It should not be forgotten that, thanks to heat recovery, heating costs will be significantly reduced in subsequent years.

Exchange or filter air?

Circulating air systems that filter the aerosols from the circulating air are currently being discussed. Their price is around £2, 700 per room. The risk of infection is indeed reduced in this way – but not as reliably as with a “correct” exchange of air through a ventilation system. And these “air scrubbers” cannot offer any of the additional advantages mentioned of a real ventilation system.

So the question is: what are our children worth to us? Ventilation devices in school classes make perfect sense even without coronavirus. In view of the current pandemic, they are all the more important – and the investments required for retrofitting are money well spent. Appropriate funding packages from the state are therefore needed as soon as possible, which provide more than emergency aid for a short-term, half-hearted solution that will become obsolete again after the pandemic. Rather, in the interests of students, teachers and parents, a long-term, sustainable solution should be sought: retrofitting with automatic ventilation systems that ensure a safe air exchange and at the same time save energy thanks to heat recovery.

This is why Stiebel Eltron UK has decided to bring 2 innovative product ranges to the market in UK to address this need. Perfect of retrofit situations these decentralised units are ideal for such applications as classrooms, dentists’ and doctors’ surgeries and small offices.

The VLR (shown in the picture above) is ideal for rooms occupied by up to 40 people, whilst the smaller LR range is ideal smaller rooms. Both recover heat from extracted air and use it to heat fresh air drawn in from the outside.

For more information visit: stiebel-eltron.co.uk

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