Using AC, Coolers During #Coronavirus? Govt Issues Guidelines For Temperature, Humidity
As we are reaching at the end of April, the temperatures soar towards the 40s and peoples need to use air conditioners (AC) and dessert coolers are increasing to get some respite from the scorching heat.
Although, there have been many concerns over the use of ACs and coolers, and also over what temperature they need to be used in, amid the coronavirus pandemic.
What Is The Solution?
To resolve these issues, the Centre has advised 18-page guideline, what the optimum temperature of air conditioner and coolers should be amid the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Let’s go through what Centre’s latest advisory says.
What Does Advisors Suggest For Air Conditioners?
As per the advisory, the temperature of the home-run air conditioner (AC) should be between 24-30 degrees Celcius.
Further, for those using ACs at homes, Centre says the humidity should be between 40-70 per cent.
While, in dry climates, do not allow relative humidity to fall below 40%. Water evaporating from a pan kept in the room will increase humidity if it falls below 40%.
“Recirculation of cool air by room air conditioners must be accompanied by outdoor air intake through slightly open windows and exhaust by natural exfiltration,” added the advisory.
Also, the advisory suggests that the rooms should be kept ventilated even when ACs are not running, “As an extra precaution, the frequency of service can be increased”.
What About Evaporative Coolers Or Desert Coolers?
To our relief, the Centre has advised on the use of evaporative or desert coolers that provide effective cooling in hot and dry climates.
Mostly, evaporative coolers do not have air filters as original equipment but they can be fitted to the cooler during or after Installation.
It is advisable to prevent dust entry and maintain hygiene, evaporative cooler tanks must be kept clean and disinfected.
Also, the water should be drained and refilled frequently according to the advisory.
While, the Horizontal Flow Evaporative Coolers, Installed in windows, can effectively cool a room or a section of a room.
But, windows must be kept open to release humid air.
According to them, the Portable evaporative coolers that do not draw outdoor air are not recommended, adding that “evaporative coolers must draw air from outside to ensure good ventilation”.
What About Fans?
Further, the advisory document says that windows should be partly kept open while using electric fans.
It says “If an exhaust fan is located nearby, then, it can also be switched on to exhaust air for better ventilation,”.
As per the study of the transmission of Covid-19 virus in 100 cities of China, it indicates that high temperature and high humidity significantly reduce the transmission of influenza.
Also, the low temperatures (7–8 °C) have been observed to be optimal for the survival of airborne influenza.
Although, the virus survival decreases progressively at moderate temperatures (20.5–24 °C) and further decreases at higher temperatures of greater than 30 °C .
Further, the SARS-CoV-2 has been found highly stable on surfaces for 14 days at 4 °C; one day at 37 °C and 30 minutes at 56 °C was needed to inactivate the virus.