Open Windows to Help Your Home’s Ventilation
In the spring and fall, take advantage of the natural ventilation that opening a window affords. By opening windows, you’ll save money on your utility bills and cool your home naturally while enjoying the fresh air. Natural ventilation also helps clear out a buildup of harmful airborne particulates, while letting in oxygen that may have become depleted in an airtight home.
To get the benefits of natural ventilation, open more than one window. Wind blowing against the home forces air through open windows on the windward side, while creating a vacuum effect that draws air out of windows on the leeward side. This process works to best effect when windows are opened at night, so that heat accumulated during the day moves out.
Landscaping can augment or diminish this effect, with a windbreak of trees or shrubs that channels winds toward windows or away from them.
Homes with more than one level can take advantage of the “chimney effect.” Through convection, cool air enters a window through the basement or the first floor, and after absorbing heat in the room, rises and is exhausted through windows upstairs.
When Not to Open Windows
If you live by a busy road or in a neighborhood where polluted or dusty air is a problem, you may want to rely on other means than opening windows to provide fresh air, including a balanced ventilation system, an air purifier or a good quality air filter in your HVAC system. Further, if you are allergic to pollen, mold spores and dust, you may have to keep your windows closed.
Obviously, it’s not cost-efficient in our climate to open windows in the dead of winter nor should you leave windows open when it’s hot and humid. Higher humidity in the home will make you feel warmer and more uncomfortable.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues — especially HVAC and plumbing issues — so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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