What would be the cost of creating a second Indoor Air Quality unit?

Question#: 6



The annual cost of adding another IAQ team composed of one team leader, one environmental specialist, and eight mechanics is $810,056, including employee benefits. Listed below is a breakdown of the cost:

HVAC Preventive Maintenance (IAQ Team) Annual Cost: FTE Amount
Mechanical systems technicians 8.0 $561,588
Mechanical systems technician team leader 1.0 80,930
Environmental specialist 1.0 93,538
Maintenance supplies   40,000
Shop equipment/tools   10,000
Vehicles/lease purchase   24,000
Annual Cost 11.0 $810,056

The goals of the Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) program are to:

  • Optimize equipment operation,
  • Sustain air quality,
  • Maintain regulatory compliance, such as ventilation requirements and radon mitigation, and
  • Minimize need for emergency reactive measures.

In order to perform the goals, the team creates school-specific Building Maintenance Plans (BMP). The benefit of adding an additional IAQ team would be that BMPs could be completed for all schools by year 2021, instead of 2026 as originally projected with the current structure of only one BMP team.

Aside from the IAQ team, the current paradigm for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) repairs in the Division of Maintenance is primarily reactive, based on repair needs identified by school staff, with limited exceptions. These exceptions include:

  • "Changeover" (work performed to switch systems seasonally from heat to air conditioning and from air conditioning to heat),
  • Limited off-season equipment maintenance for major systems (only chillers and boilers),
  • When the IAQ team visits a small number of schools per year on special projects to restore mechanical equipment to optimized performance in response to an indoor air quality complaint, and
  • School-based staff complete basic, limited, preventive maintenance (filters, some belts).

When creating a BMP, the team completes major repairs that are needed in each school to all pieces of HVAC equipment (air handlers, unit ventilators, fans, pneumatic systems, etc.). The repairs needed at a typical school can be more extensive than originally anticipated at program inception, and it can take weeks to months to restore all HVAC equipment in the school.

"Initial" BMP creation visits are still needed at over 100 schools. After initial visits are completed, the team(s) would revisit schools regularly to maintain a preventive maintenance schedule and minimize emergency calls. Benefits of regular visits include the following:

  • Reinforce regular use of BMP by the Division of School Plant Operations,
  • Sustain the life of the equipment,
  • Minimize breakdowns,
  • Optimize comfort within setpoint guidelines,
  • Minimize potential for mold outbreaks, and
  • Maintain acceptable indoor air quality parameters.