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Measuring thermal comfort

A simple way of estimating the level of thermal comfort in your workplace is to ask your employees or their safety representatives (such as unions or employee associations) if they are satisfied with the thermal environment ie to use the thermal comfort checklist.

Use the downloadable thermal comfort checklist to help you identify whether there may be a risk of thermal discomfort to your employees. Please note that this is a basic checklist and does not replace a suitable and sufficient risk assessment, taking account of thermal comfort.

Read the descriptions for each thermal comfort factor, and tick the appropriate box. If you tick two or more ‘Yes’ boxes there may be a risk of thermal discomfort and you may need to carry out a more detailed risk assessment

Assessing thermal comfort

Once you have identified a problem using the thermal comfort checklist, in most instances the guidance on this website will be sufficient to enable you to improve thermal comfort in your workplace.  If you need to take further action in measuring thermal comfort, you should refer to the relevant British Standards that cover this area.

If thermal comfort is an issue in your workplace you may need to consider it as part of your risk assessment process. Read the six basic factors affecting thermal comfort and think about how they may be affecting your employees and about resolving the ones having the largest impact. If the environment is affected by seasonal factors you may need to reassess the risk at different times of year. For example consider scheduling maintenance work to a cooler time of the day.

Next: Controlling thermal comfort

2015-07-07