Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Fresh Air 80's and Ventilation

The too tight Home - How to introduce fresh air

On the surface, it seems to make no sense; build a very tight house, and then knock holes in the wall to introduce fresh air. Here's the why and the how.

A well sealed home will certainly save on energy bills, but there is a down side to the too tight home. Pets, cleaning products, cooking, and material out-gasing all produce fumes and odors which need to be removed from the living environment. Carbon dioxide from gas burning appliances needs to be vented out. Moist air needs to exit from the bathroom and kitchen. This exhausted air needs to be replaced by fresh air from outdoors. A very tight house can be a health risk if not properly designed to let out a regulated amount of stale air, and let in regulated fresh air.

When measuring just how much ventilation is needed, we speak in terms of air changes per hour (ACH), in other words, how often the air in a room needs to be replaced per hour to insure proper ventilation. HVAC requires 8 ACH for bathrooms, 15 ACH for kitchens, and 6 ACH for other rooms. For a more exhaustive study (pun not intended) see this site Ventilation (architecture) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

There are many ways to achieve these levels. They range from energy and heat recovery ventilators which preheat incoming air with the furnace heated exhaust air, to the low cost method of combining inlet vents with exhaust fans. The later is a simple, low cost, lower tech option. Fans rated for quiet, low wattage, continuous run, such as our super cool Panasonic fan can be centrally located, usually in a hallway. In addition, ASHRA (the industry standard) requires that a properly sized fan be installed in every bathroom and kitchen.

The low tech way of replacing this vented air - the Fresh 80 vent passive (read non-electric) air inlet (see picture above). This vent is virtually a way of poking a hole in your wall in a more controlled manner. Usually, one fresh 80 is put in every bedroom, and one in the living room. The vent can be opened or closed, and contains a washable filter. Locating it high up on a wall will allow the cool air entering the room to slowly mix with the interior heated air. When the fan is turned on, it exhausts the stale air, and pulls air in through the Fresh 80's. Do these inlet vents make your room colder - let's just say that we've sold more of these vents in Alaska where houses are super tight, than in any other state!

For more information on ventiltion, see the Ventilation section of our website. Just click here


Roof Ventilators said...

Hi, Friends nice blog it will help us to live freshly entire agencies like Energy Trust of Oregon have been created to promote it, and major city programs like Clean Energy Works of Portland are sprouting up to promulgate it.
Thank you

lorreal said...

Ventilation is supply to and removal of air from a space to improve the indoor air quality. The idea is to capture, remove and dilute pollutants emitted in the space to reach a desired, acceptable air quality level.
air ventilator

mold inspections Manhattan said...

Fresh air is much needed to enter the room so that there is a healthy environment for the family to breathe fresh air.And this is also possible when there is cleanliness in the home. said...

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