The absence of fresh air circulating within any building is known to be the cause of a range of problems, but this can be especially troublesome when the summer months roll around. Sick building syndrome is an illness caused through the poor design and ventilation of buildings and can include symptoms like headaches, eye irritation, coughing, and, in some cases, chest tightness.

Issues such as this can be seen to lead to a reduction in staff efficiency, an increase in absences and staff turnover, reduced overtime, and extended breaks, making it vital to ensure that your staff are provided with a well ventilated work environment to avoid a decrease in productivity, health, and overall work satisfaction. 

Health and Safety Executives state that there should be a minimum airflow of 8 litres per second per person; a space with an air-flow velocity in excess of around 0.25 – 0.35 metres per second is considered to be draughty, while the velocity of fewer than 0.1 metres per second is thought to be stagnant.

The installation of fabric ducting technology alongside heat recovery air handling units works to distribute fresh air through your retail building project helps to ensure draught-free air movement without causing cold/hot areas within a space. Having a fresh and clean airflow can help staff to feel less fatigued and more alert, increasing productivity; the same can be said for staff operating within a factory setting.

With an overall speedy installation time and low purchase cost, fabric ducting technology is a highly cost effective way to guarantee healthy air distribution within a workspace, and with a range of 9 basic colours, or select special colours, patterns, or logo’s, to choose from, it is likely to have a great emotional impact on your staff too!

For those seeking an eco-friendlier resolution to their ventilation problems, a number of suppliers will offer fabric ducts manufactured from 100% recycled materials, these are made from recycled plastic water bottles constructed into a polyester fabric duct. The plastic is first checked for and potential impurities and then spun into a yarn. The use of environmentally friendly fabric ducting solutions works to save close to 50% in water usage, over 66% in energy consumption, and 34% in greenhouse gas emissions. It’s calculated that suppliers at Prihoda UK re-use approximately 13 plastic bottles for every M² of material used alone.

To reinforce these claims, it can be found that Prihoda UK was recently employed by IKEA to provide their recycled fabric ducting solutions to their recent building project in Exeter, as well as their BREEAM store, that holds an ‘outstanding’ rating, based in Greenwich – this is the first retail unit to be awarded this rating. During this building project, it is predicted that Prihoda UK re-used just over 55,000 plastic bottles through the use of recycled fabric ducting technology throughout IKEA’s Greenwich store, helping to provide a great environmentally friendly option, as well as good quality ventilation.

The maintenance of fabric ducting solutions couldn’t be simpler, all ducts zipping together and being designed to fit in the majority of commercial washing machines. Extra care is to be taken when washing and drying your fabric ducts, which is why many suppliers will provide their customers with a full washing service from their in-house laundrette.

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