It’s common knowledge that buildings need adequate ventilation (natural or mechanical) to maintain good indoor air quality and comfort. Without adequate ventilation, airborne pollutants can trigger allergies and other respiratory conditions. Not to mention, moisture is trapped inside, creating a damp environment that’s the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew.
What’s less clear is how much fresh air a home needs. The amount it requires really depends on the size of your home. As a good rule of thumb, there should be 100 cubic feet per minute of fresh air for every 600 to 900 sq.ft. of living space, although the recommended amount of fresh air ultimately depends on how tight the space is as well as the outdoor weather conditions.
What are the ways to make sure there’s enough fresh air inside your home?
Opening the Window For At Least 15 Minutes
Leaving the window open for at least 15 minutes a day helps cool the room and lets in fresh air. Ideally, you should do this before 10 am, when the outdoor air quality starts to drop because of the daily commute, or after 9 pm. You can’t leave the window ajar all day, or the heat and conditioned air will leak out. That’s why contractors recommend that large homes and buildings install a whole-house ventilation system, which draws fresh air in and pushes stale air out.
Installing HRVs & ERVs
There are two types of whole-house ventilation systems: heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and energy recovery ventilators (ERVs). The former only exchanges heat, while the latter exchanges both heat and water vapor.
Which of the two should you get? In general, ERVs are more suited to areas that frequently experience extreme weather. However, you also have to consider other factors such as your family’s needs. That’s why before choosing an air conditioner or mechanical ventilation system, it’s best to consult an experienced HVAC contractor.
Are you looking for experienced contractors in your area?
Thomas J. Fannon & Sons has been offering professional heating and cooling services to local residents since 1885. In addition to professional HVAC services, we also offer premium HVAC and mechanical ventilation systems, as well as ductless split systems. To get a free estimate, call us at (703) 549-5700 or fill out this form.