By Adam Dawson
This article is a part of the September/October 2020, Volume 32, Number 5, Audiology Today issue.
COVID-19 has created much uncertainty about how the world will change. One area of concern for hearing-care professionals is the audiometric booth. In addition to door handles and surfaces potentially being contaminated, the air in the room can also be compromised if measures to ensure effective ventilation aren’t taken.
Ventilation depends on the type of booth you have. Eckel recommends that ventilation in their booths be kept at a lower volume. Typical Eckel sound rooms are equipped with low-volume, fan-powered air-handling systems that are capable of 10 to 12 air exchanges per hour. For Eckel booths hooked up to an HVAC system, it’s recommended that the air-handling system should be balanced for no more than 80 to 100 cfm to maintain the acoustic integrity of the room, as well as the air-exchange rate.
As for ETS-Lindgren audiometric booths, the following recommendations apply:
- Newer booths with variable speed fans
- When testing, adjust fan for 6 to 8 air changes per hour
- When not testing, the airflow can be adjusted up to 148 cfm
- Older booths with integrated muffin fans
- 45 cfm per fan—most booths have 2 fans
- Booths connected to building HVAC
- Recommendation is 6 to 8 air changes per hour
- An airflow hood is needed to measure actual air flow
For more audiometric booth ventilation tips, read the full article today!