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The National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) — also known as the HVAC Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Association — is actively advocating for the designation of HVAC services and air duct cleaning as essential businesses as the country continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
NADCA mailed letters to government officials in all 50 states requesting that HVAC services and air duct cleaning are recognized as essential services. Air duct cleaners perform source removal of contaminants from ductwork and clean and apply antimicrobial to HVAC systems and components. These services play a vital role in ensuring a clean and safe indoor environment for both businesses and residences.
In addition, NADCA partnered with the Restoration Industry Association (RIA) and the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) to release a joint statement to federal, state, and local officials, requesting they recognize and cite HVAC technicians, air duct cleaning companies, surface cleaning/disaster restoration contractors, and indoor air quality professionals as essential businesses. Each of these industries provides essential services related to the health, safety, and welfare of building occupants in residences and facilities.
"As more states and municipalities call for quarantines, business closures, and shelter-in-place/stay-at-home orders, a lack of clearly defined federal classifications has left states to individually determine what's essential versus non-essential business," said Mark Zarzeczny, ASCS, CVI, NADCA's president and chairman of the board. "While businesses deemed essential are determined at the state level, most states recognize plumbers and other contractors as essential workers, however HVAC technicians and air duct cleaners have been overlooked."
"We know this is uncharted territory, and understandably, local, state, and federal authorities are making decisions swiftly, with only as much information as is available at any given time," continued Zarzeczny. "We felt compelled to fight for our members, and sincerely hope our plea to government officials will implore states to deem HVAC services and air duct cleaning essential."
To further support members, NADCA has created a website that serves as a repository of useful information for the industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. For instance, NADCA anticipates a greater consumer demand for NADCA members to "sanitize" or "disinfect" HVAC systems, and while numerous antimicrobials on the market have been approved for use in HVAC systems and ductwork, not all antimicrobials approved for HVAC components can be claimed to sanitize or disinfect. The support site includes guidelines for the use of chemicals and antimicrobials in HVAC systems.
Finally, with a dangerous shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) in the healthcare industry, NADCA has called on members to donate PPE to the GetUsPPE organization. NADCA represents more than 1,300 small and large businesses and more than 3,000 certified technicians, with most routinely utilizing PPE. Items needed include gloves, masks, N95 Respirators, face shields, booties, safety goggles, and more. Visit www.getusppe.org/give for a list of donation sites.
For COVID-19 resources and information for the HVAC and air duct cleaning industries, visit www.nadca.com/resources/covid19.