What is the ideal temperature in your building?
In the design of the workplace, to create the optimal temperature, hot and cold air should be considered. HVAC systems are designed to create ideal temperatures for different buildings, making both air conditioning systems and heating systems like boilers more efficient as well as “smarter.”
However, to achieve the ideal temperature, they must consider several factors:
Type of building (office, warehouse, laboratory, food preparation, etc.)
The age of the building (how much heat the building fabric retains)
The outside temperature of the environment
Smart controlling of the heating and cooling system
In the UK it may feel like we’re experiencing bad weather for most of the year, but our temperatures are quite stable and balanced compared to extremes elsewhere in the world. This provides a suitable platform upon which an employer can fulfill its duty to provide a safe and comfortable work environment, and so that an HVAC system can be designed to provide optimal temperatures. In some parts of the world that are either hot all year round or cold all year round, air conditioning systems can work much harder.
Why is it important to provide the optimal temperature of the workplace?
Creating an optimal workplace temperature is not only a basic health and safety task for the employer, but also helps increase productivity and maintains the health and morale of employees. Hot or humid temperatures can cause dizziness, tension, and fatigue, which can affect concentration. It’s about employees getting the job done right, but it’s also important to understand that extreme temperatures can lead to lost productivity, errors, and most importantly, safety issues. We all know what it’s like to be in a workplace where the weather is too cold or too hot. It affects our body and brain. Optimal room temperature should always be among the goals.
How do you decide on the optimal temperature?
Deciding on the optimum temperature is mainly influenced by the type of building. For example, it would be very difficult to keep an open warehouse with a lot of height and space warm, especially since the external doors are often opened to facilitate the movement of goods. An office, a retail unit, or a healthcare facility will be easier to keep warm, while other indoor workspaces may be easy to maintain, but if physical labor is involved, proper ventilation and Temperature control will be required. Whether it’s for comfort when choosing the optimal boiler temperature or air conditioner temperature, it’s somewhat a matter of personal preference, but there are guidelines to help you…
What is the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) guidance on optimum temperature?
HSE guidance on workplace temperatures states that areas where strenuous work is carried out should be at least 16°C or 13°C.
However, office environments should be more stable and comfortable, generally in the temperature range between 21 and 23°C. There is no exact minimum or maximum limit for the temperature of the working environment, but deciding on the optimal temperature should take into account the radiant temperature, humidity and air velocity.
These factors are considered when properly designing an air conditioning system. Where work environments generate more humidity, such as factories or food preparation areas with ovens, these factors are factored into the design. The general rule is that an employer must maintain a “reasonable” temperature in the workplace. Since this is a subjective decision on the part of the employer, a “reasonable” judgment requires showing that certain elements have been analyzed, so an employer must consider individual circumstances and carry out risk assessments. to cover the different activities, time of year and health issues faced by employees. It’s a myth that there’s some magical temperature at which employees can avoid work, but it’s employers’ responsibility to keep their employees safe.
The temperature must also be suitable for the operation of any personal protective equipment required to perform a task safely. Hot temperatures can become even more uncomfortable if your employees have to wear overalls and helmets, which means you need to cool down the temperature with an air conditioning unit.
HVAC systems are maintained by experts
Air conditioning systems are designed to handle the needs of the interior of the building relative to the outside temperature, so a system must be designed to perform differently at different times of the year, regardless of whether it is a workplace, office, warehouse, factory or hospital.
Robinsons Facility Services has industry expertise in the servicing and maintenance of HVAC systems for many different sectors and this includes site and operation assessment and agreement on the optimum temperature range required to be maintained. So a maintenance system can be designed to achieve those temperatures.
Keeping the interior of your commercial building comfortable for your employees and customers is an essential part of your commitment to them. When many people are gathered in one place, it is impossible to ensure that the temperature is set at a level that satisfies everyone. Variations from personal preferences in temperature can be expected. However, in some cases, offices and retail establishments can mistakenly make indoor workspaces too cold or too hot for most employees and customers. Consider the following factors when choosing the best temperature for commercial building offices and workspaces.
What is the best temperature for commercial buildings?
The best answer to this question is: A temperature that will keep as many people as possible comfortable and happy. You can expect indoor spaces to be air-conditioned in the summer and heated in the winter, but finding the right temperature can be difficult. The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends a temperature range of 60 to 76 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a good average range for most areas, but be prepared to accommodate employees for whom these temperatures are too hot or too cold.
Also remember that specific location conditions can affect the temperature for certain individuals. Employees who work near equipment that produces heat, in the path of outside breezes or near doors, or in areas that are naturally cooler or warmer may not be able to perceive the average temperature of the rest of the building. It is also reasonable that employees working in areas such as large warehouses, cold storage units or near commercial boilers should expect temperatures to be less than ideal.
How does temperature affect employees?
Trying to find the best temperature for commercial building spaces and work areas stems from the effects that temperature will have on employees and customers. The most common case is that the indoor temperature is too cold because of the air conditioning, but there may be times when your interior is too warm. If your office or retail building is consistently too cold or too hot, you can expect problems including:
Reduced performance: If the work environment is not comfortable, the performance of employees is likely to decrease. Cold temperatures make movement more difficult because of the tension it creates in our muscles. Warm temperatures also make people less inclined to move. Interactions in unpleasant environments are likely to be shorter and perhaps even more volatile, reducing the extent and effectiveness of employee communication.
Demoralization: An unpleasant work environment affects the morale and mood of employees. Areas that are too cold are likely to make employees feel isolated and less social. Too hot areas can make people angry.
Temperature adjusting request: Simply staying quiet and enduring uncomfortable temperatures is a bad idea, as it can lead to decreased performance, resentment, and other negative effects. If employees are truly uncomfortable, they should be encouraged to ask for temperature adjustments or changes in their environment.
Dress warmer: In cooler locations, employees can wear jackets, scarves, fingerless gloves, or heavier clothing to keep warm.
Relax in more comfortable places: Employees can take quick breaks in areas that are more comfortable, such as cooling off in an air-conditioned space or warming up slightly in a stairwell or hot area.
Drink the right drinks: A hot cup of coffee or cooling water bottle can help employees maintain a more appropriate body temperature in areas that are otherwise too cold or too hot.
Our goal is to help educate our customers on plumbing, HVACR, fire protection, and alarm systems in mechanical, commercial, and residential settings. For more information on how to determine the best temperature for commercial building occupants and to see projects we’ve worked on, visit our website.