Concern: Talbott Springs Elementary School: September 5th, 2019 (CXTSES2019000109)

Room 28
Date of IEQ Report Form
Date of Report
Air quality, presence of allergen(s) in the office/classroom. Stale odor, musty smell present most days, made worse by heat/humidity. Severe allergy response while in classroom.
IEQ Investigation Process

Identify deficiencies that may impact IEQ and/or sources of odor concerns. Typically includes the following depending on the nature of concern, but not limited to:

  • interview/questionnaire of concern individual(s)
  • inspection above drop ceiling (condition of roof deck, pipe insulation, return air plenum)
  • inspection of ventilation system (operation of variable air volume box and outdoor air dampers, check controls, measurements of carbon dioxide, temperature and relative humidity, sources near outdoor air intake, measure return and supply air volume, cleanliness of coils, liner and condensate pan)
  • inspection of exterior
  • inspection below drop ceiling (housekeeping, sink and floor drain traps, signs of past and present moisture concern via visual and/or moisture meter, mold growth, ensure connection of current and capping of abandoned sanitary vents, odorizers, excessive plants and fabric items, identify potential pathways, and measure volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide, and lighting)

Date(s) of Assessment:  September 18, 23, and 25, 2019

Based on questionnaire / interview, time is also spent in 31-35 (POD), and pre-k areas.  As a result, these areas were also assessed.

An outstanding and/or unusual odor was not detected during the assessment.

Air handling unit 1 (within a penthouse) serving the PODs in front of the school and unit 7 (located in loft off the side of the stage) serving pre-k were reviewed.  With the exception of the exterior portion of the condensate pan of unit 1, the condition and operation (i.e. outdoor air dampers, coils, fitlers) of the components were found to be acceptable.  The exterior portion of the condensate pan, where it connects to the drain had a buildup of scale that could block the drain and/or not to allow condensate to flow out from the interior portion (within the unit) of the pan.  Scale was floating on atop of condensate in unit 7.

Data loggers recording temperature and humidity were reviewed.  The Office of Environment placed one in room 33 for the investigation and Building Services (HVAC) had one at the thermostat in the middle of the POD.  Building Services has data loggers throughout the school for their purposes.

Data loggers indicated occupied temperatures (73-75 degrees Fahrenheit) and relative humidity (<60%) were acceptable since placement.

Mold growth was not observed on inspected surfaces.

No deficiencies were observed above the drop ceiling.  The roof deck consisted of steel.

Housekeeping of the POD was acceptable.

The "sand box" contained fabric pom-poms in room 33 instead of rice, sand, or Legos which are normally observed within the bins.

Dress up clothing exists within some play areas.

In viewing the POD and pre-k areas, it appears tents and other fabric materials are being utilized.

A void with a solid / blank electrical outlet cover was observed on the exterior cement block wall in room 33 near the teacher's desk and upper left of the window.  Gaps exist around the cover that may allow air within the hollows of the block wall to be introduced into the interior space under certain conditions.

The carpet (where relevant) was dry as determined by a moisture probe.

Staff had inquired about the discolored appearance of the air return grille in room 33.  The material was accumulated dust.


Corrective Actions
October 4th, 2019

Building Services will clean scale from condensate pans in units 1, 2, and 7.

October 4th, 2019

Building Services will evaluate the hole in exterior wall partially covered by an electrical plate cover and seal accordingly.

October 4th, 2019

The return air vent in room 33 was cleaned by the Office of Environment at the time of the investigation.

October 4th, 2019

Consider removing and/or cleaning reading area items, role playing clothes, and/or pom-poms if symptoms appear to start or become exacerbated when items are in use.

Date Closed
Tracking Number