Its inbuilt environmental sensor and brand-new Air app instantly let you know when indoor air pollutants (or VOCs) around you hit unhealthy levels. The result? You’ll know exactly when you’re at risk, and when it’s time to do something about it.
What are VOCs?
VOC stands for volatile organic compound. VOCs are a type of air pollutant, and you’re most likely to find them inside homes and buildings – in fact, VOC concentrations are more than five times higher indoors than they are outside. The term ‘VOCs’ covers a range of chemicals and other substances, typically produced by everyday household and building products.
With buildings becoming more energy efficient and air tight, and new building products introduced all the time, indoor VOC levels are on the rise. As a result, indoor air pollution – and its impact on tradespeople’s on-site health – is now a bigger concern than ever before.
How are VOCs produced?
VOCs are caused by a variety of trade and consumer products commonly used in homes and other buildings.
List of common VOC sources:
VOCs originate mainly from certain types of:
- Glues and adhesives
- Cleaning agents
They can also be caused by things like smoking and other human activity.
Air pollutants like these don’t just disappear when you stop using a source product. They can linger long after the job’s finished, so it’s not unusual for new-build and renovation building sites to exhibit very high VOC levels for months afterwards.
How do indoor air pollutants affect me?
You know that light-headedness you get from being exposed to fresh paint for too long? That’s VOC exposure. Indoor air pollutants can also cause symptoms like headaches, respiratory problems, irritation of the eyes, skin, nose and throat, and feelings of dizziness and nausea – as well as having a detrimental impact on your cognitive abilities, comfort and overall wellbeing.
Who’s at risk from indoor VOCs?
Unhealthy VOC levels can impact anyone working in close quarters with sources of indoor air pollution. As well as plumbers, tilers, carpet fitters, plasterers, painters, decorators, carpenters, electricians and other building and construction professionals, this also includes cleaners and furniture builders. And it’s not just the trade; anyone using products like household cleaning supplies, air fresheners, candles and solvents can be exposed to VOCs.
How can the Cat S61 indoor air quality monitor help?
The Cat S61 is the first Cat smartphone of its kind to feature integrated VOC monitoring technology. It’s an indoor air quality monitor in your pocket – backed by the renowned Cat name that you know and trust. With an inbuilt multi-pixel indoor air quality sensor, it’s programmed to pick up on the most common VOCs impacting tradespeople day to day.
As well as monitoring indoor air pollutants, the Cat S61 alerts users when VOCs in the room reach unhealthy levels. With a better understanding of indoor air quality, it’s easier for users to take steps to limit their exposure.
The Cat S61 Air app can also measure indoor temperature and humidity – useful for plasterers, decorators and anyone needing to get a reading on a room’s moisture levels.
It’s worth noting that the indoor air quality monitor on the Cat S61 is not a tool for checking whether an area is safe (it is unable to detect individual gas vapours like smoke, asbestos, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide or other harmful particulates and gases) – it simply reports the VOC level in the surrounding air.
How does the Cat S61 Air app work?
In the same way that a fitness tracker monitors your everyday activity, the Cat S61 Air app takes regular readings of the air quality around you and sends you an alert when indoor VOCs reach unhealthy levels. In fact, its inbuilt monitor checks the surrounding air quality every four seconds. Current VOC levels are clearly displayed on the App’s home screen, along with the air temperature and humidity.
Using the App’s graph functionality, you can also track how the VOCs around you change throughout the day. With up to a week’s worth of historical data, it’s easy to spot patterns and any consistent periods of exposure you need to avoid.
How can I reduce my exposure to VOCs?
Once your Cat S61 smartphone alerts you to an unhealthy indoor air quality environment, the quickest and simplest way to reduce your exposure is to step outside and take a break. Proper room ventilation is also key: either mechanically via air conditioning or a fan, or just by opening windows and doors.
Discover more about the award-winning features of the Cat S61.