Getting The Most Out Of Your Whole House Ventilation System
Ventilation is one key to reducing indoor air pollution. Tightly built homes are energy efficient, but they don’t allow for the proper amount of indoor/outdoor air exchange. Enter the whole-house ventilating system, complete with its own set of fans and ductwork to exhaust stale air and introduce fresh air evenly to every room.
Certain design criteria are necessary to get the most from your whole-house ventilating system. If you’re considering having one installed, implement the following for optimal performance:
- Air seal the house: The wall between the house and the garage deserves extra attention since polluted air from the garage can enter the home through a leaky wall.
- Select the right materials: Furniture, paint, carpet, building materials and other components emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that contribute to indoor air pollution. Avoid these as much as possible in your home.
- Choose the best type of ventilating system for our climate: Supply, exhaust and balanced systems have different effects in various climates. A balanced whole-house ventilating system is ideal in any climate.
- Determine your ventilation requirements: The typical exchange rate is 50 to 100 cubic feet per minute (cfm). The precise ventilation you choose depends on occupancy levels and varies by room.
- Select the appropriate equipment: Develop a design that keeps operating costs low and the air clean. Properly sized equipment is important to avoid over-ventilating the space, which could increase your utility bills without significantly improving air quality.
- Utilize spot ventilation: Exhaust fans in the kitchen, bathroom and laundry room control pollution at the source. These should function independently of the whole-house ventilating system.
- Balance and test the system after installation: Make sure the ducts are airtight, proper airflow occurs, and the system functions as intended. Follow the owner’s manual for tips regarding efficient operation, maintenance and changing system filters. Consider hiring a specialist to design your whole-house ventilating system for the best results.
For more information, please contact us at Sobieski Services, Inc. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).
Image Credit: YOUneak / Shannon Frost