Ensuring proper ventilation with outside air can help reduce indoor airborne contaminants, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and other viruses. However, by itself, increasing ventilation is not enough to protect people from exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19. When used along with other best practices (such as wearing masks, social distancing, frequent hand washing, and surface disinfection) recommended by the CDC, increasing ventilation can be part of a plan to protect yourself and your family.
Use your HVAC system and consider upgrading filters
Since running your HVAC system filters the air as it is circulated, it can help reduce airborne contaminants, including viruses, indoors. By itself, running your HVAC system is not enough to protect yourself and your family from the virus that causes COVID-19. When used along with other best practices recommended by CDC, operating the HVAC system can be part of a plan to protect yourself and your family.If you have an HVAC system:
- Run the system fan for longer times, or continuously, as HVAC systems filter the air only when the fan is running. Many systems can be set to run the fan even when no heating or cooling is taking place.
- Check to be sure the filter is correctly in place and consider upgrading the filter to a higher efficiency filter or the highest-rated filter that your system fan and filter slot can accommodate. Consult your HVAC manual or an HVAC professional for details.
- Open the outside air intake, if your system has one (this is not common for home systems). Consult your HVAC manual or an HVAC professional for details.
- If your HVAC system has an energy-efficient air-to-air heat exchanger, heat recovery ventilator (HRV) or energy-recovery ventilator (ERV) use it, as they increase ventilation.