Sealing your home up to prevent energy leaks is all well and good, but if you’re also sealing in pollutants, it stops being so good. The importance of home ventilation shouldn’t be underestimated when it comes to indoor air quality. Because no two houses are exactly alike, Yuma area residents take a variety of home ventilation approaches. Here are the three basic strategies:
- Natural ventilation. This takes place by default in homes that aren’t sealed against air leaks. Conditioned air is forced out of leaks and cracks (especially when the forced-air HVAC system is on) and unfiltered air is pulled into the home. This air movement is uncontrollable and unpredictable. It varies based on the weather, temperature and other factors, and there’s no guarantee every room in the house will be properly ventilated. Some households rely on natural ventilation during the summer, opening windows in the evening and using a whole-house fan to help circulate air. This strategy, of course, is heavily influenced by the weather outside.
- Spot ventilation. Spot ventilation addresses the most problematic areas in the house, like bathrooms, kitchens and hobby rooms. These areas are prone to accumulate moisture, odors and other fumes, and spot vents can usher the stale, polluted air out while pulling in fresher air. Spot fans can improve the efficiency of natural or whole-house methods, but it’s not a good idea to rely on spot ventilation as your sole home ventilation strategy.
- Whole-house ventilation. A whole-house system transfers air into and out of your house in a controlled fashion, ensuring a steady supply of fresh, filtered air. Pollutants are continually ushered out of the building, preventing them from building up to dangerous levels. Some whole-home ventilation systems, like energy recovery systems, even “recycle” the temperature created by your HVAC unit, meaning it doesn’t have to generate as much heat or cool air. Whole-house systems often rely on their own network of ducts, but there are versions that can be installed with pre-existing ductwork.
If you have questions about home ventilation, call Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric. We’re proud to provide personalized indoor air quality solutions for every Yuma area household we serve.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about home ventilation and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.