Noxious odors are often the cause of sick building syndrome and have been known to result in evacuation of buildings and illnesses among occupants. Odors can lead to headaches and nausea. To resolve IAQ complaints and to reassure building occupants that their air is acceptable, identity of unacceptable odors is necessary.
However, tracking and identifying odors is a challenging task. Odors typically indicate the presence of volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) in the air, but often at very low concentrations. Levels are usually so low that traditional means of detecting chemicals are not applicable. Special techniques applicable only to indoor environments will work. Many odors are episodic, which means they come and go depending on their source and building conditions. Most are related to emissions from on-going activities in the building, construction activities and materials being used, cleaning chemicals, new furnishings and personal care products. Common objectionable odors include sewer-like, musty, putrid, sweet, solvent-like, and fishy. Odors may also be brought into the building from outside sources. The only way an odor can be resolved and eliminated is to identify its source.
When should I test?
How is the test conducted?
The test kit will provide you with a special air monitor that will collect airborne VOCs over an extended period of time. This may be from a minimum of 5 days to a maximum of one month. Since odors can come and go, it is important to have this expanded period of time to capture the odor. The monitor is removed from the kit, uncapped and hung in an area of concern for 5-30 days. Frequent areas tested include bedrooms, living rooms, offices, office cubicles, kitchens, conference rooms, schoolrooms, science laboratories, copy rooms, libraries, and cars. After the test period, the monitor is removed, capped, and sent back to AQS' accredited chemical laboratory for a detailed chemical analysis, designed to measure each chemical down to the billionth part.
What type of report will I receive?
Within 5 days of the kit arriving back to the laboratory, a report will be sent to you listing all of the chemicals found in the air of the tested environments. The chemicals will be identified along with estimation of their potential for being an odorant and common sources of the odorant.
What are the benefits of the IAQ Odor Test Kit?
All shipping and packaging included in the price.
Air Quality Sciences, Inc., 1337 Capital Circle, Atlanta, GA 30067-8720. Tel: 770-933-0638; Fax: 770-933-0641.