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Good Ventilation For Good Indoor Air Quality

Quality air to breathe within your home or workplace is sometimes hard to achieve, and typically the most active method to improve indoor air quality is to remove sources of pollution or to reduce the number of emissions. Often, source control is more cost-efficient than increasing ventilation as adding extra ventilation can increase the energy costs to maintain indoor air quality. However, there are many ways you can improve the ventilation of a building without raising the costs too high while running it.

Ventilation Improvements

Most air quality problems around the home are derived from poorly filtered air, or items within your home that create poor air, like ovens or stovetops, smoke, mold, and asbestos to name a few. The best way to eliminate the poor air quality is of course to eliminate the source. This isn’t always as simple a task as you would think, and some sources of bad odors can be quite dangerous.

Of course, the best solution to improve air quality is source control, however, what happens if the source can’t be eliminated that easily?

One other way to improve the air quality in your home is not to eliminate the source but lower the concentration of the pollutants. The best way to do this is by creating a better airflow from outdoors to indoors, otherwise known as ventilation. Ventilation has two very specific purposes, one is to dilute the pollutants from within the building and secondly to remove the pollutants from it.

Ventilation Elements

There are three main elements of ventilation that are important and they are the ventilation rate (which is the amount of outdoor air provided in the space), airflow direction and air distribution.

Many heating and cooling systems do not actually bring fresh air into your home, so utilizing windows and doors for airflow is vital for clean air to enter a space. When the weather permits, you should manually ventilate the home as much as possible. Not only does this clean the distribute clean outside air through the home but it also stops things like mold from getting out of control. Well-ventilated spaces are far less likely to retain bad smell or remain damp enough to assist the growth of mold.

Other Ways To Remove Contaminants

Other simple methods you can use to remove contaminants from your home are ventilation fans commonly used in bathrooms to remove stream. Ventilation fans remove contaminants from a specific room into the outdoors and draw cleaner air from other parts of the home. So, even if you have one door open at the other end of your home, running ventilation fans will draw air through the home enough to prevent things like mold from developing.

Ventilation helps to remove indoor airborne pollutants which reduces contaminant levels and improves your indoor air quality.

Introducing outdoor air into your home is the best way to create a healthy indoor air quality level. To ensure your heating and cooling systems are distributing clean air through, make sure your filters are cleaned regularly, and the home is well-ventilated.

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4 Reasons You Need Your Ventilation Systems Serviced

Your ventilation system in your home is one of the key elements of your family’s health. The air in your home can be filled with contaminants like airborne spores and germs and can be prone to mold and mildew. Poorly ventilated homes are far more susceptible than those with air conditioning and ventilation systems.

For allergy and asthma sufferers, poor ventilation is a well-known trigger, and creates a very unhealthy environment, causing unnecessary illness. By reducing dampness in the air, by lowering condensation levels, and removing dust and pollen from the air, ventilation systems makes the air cleaner, and your family healthier.

Ventilation systems undoubtedly improve the quality of the air you breathe and can also save you a lot of money. One important thing to know about ventilation systems is that with regular use, comes the requirement to maintain it. Maintenance can include cleaning filters, and general servicing to clean and ensure the system is working to its full capacity. There are of course many other reasons you should service your ventilation system. 

Here are 4 Reasons You Need Your Ventilation Systems Serviced:

Preventative maintenance

The thermostat that helps to monitor the temperatures of your home is a critical part of your heating, cooling and ventilation system, and without regular maintenance the thermostat can stop working at the capacity or stop working altogether. This can cause your home’s temperature to become out of balance, resulting in the loss of your preferred thermal comfort levels. Preventative maintenance will pick up any small thermostat issues early, allowing you to replace it before it is too late.

Dirty Filters

Regular maintenance includes the cleaning or replacement of dirty or faulty filters. Dirty filters mean air flow will be restricted and the air will not be cleaned as it should be. The only way to ensure the filters are doing the job they are designed for is through maintenance. Filters should be cleaned seasonally, and if you are in a dusty area, it might pay to purchase an extra set of filters to keep in clean storage to replace between seasonal servicing. Dirty filters also reduce the efficiency of the system, forcing the system to run harder and cost you more.

To Rectify Improper Installations or Imbalanced Dampers

Sometimes installation can be rushed or not correctly carried out for many reasons, however servicing your ventilation system allows the technician to find and repair any errors that were previously made upon installation or adjustments. Your ducting can often become unattached inside your roof or walls if it isn’t installed correctly, which can cost hundreds of dollars a year on air going inside your walls rather than where you need it to be.

Incorrectly balanced ducting can also lead to hot or cold spots in areas of the home and servicing the system can easily rectify this problem. Ducting balance can also be altered for the seasons. You house position has a big impact on how the heat is circulated through your home, and some parts are almost always hotter or colder than others naturally. Your service technician can alter the ducting and rebalance it to suit the seasons, to ensure your home is a consistent temperature throughout, all year round.

To Ensure It Runs at Optimum Capacity

For your system to run at its peak performance level, a service technician needs to be able to find and fix problems or faults. This enables your system to run at its best all year. Maintenance is a cost that you might be hesitant at paying for, however when you think about costs of maintenance versus costs of repairs, the money really is worth spending. Just like you service your car, you should service your ventilation system to prevent large costs when something breaks.

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Manage Your Thermostat: Keep Cool and Spend Less

Even if your air conditioning unit has been well maintained and correctly prepared for the summer, your system still may not be running as efficiently and cost effectively as possible. Several different factors play a role in the heating and cooling of your home such as your thermostat as well as insulation. It is very important to be mindful of how high and low you set your thermostat, especially when sleeping and when out of your house. While we all want to be nice and warm while we sleep or come home to a toasty house after a vacation or weekend trip, unnecessary heating can run your gas bill through the roof. Knocking your thermostat down one degree at night or a few while you’re away can make a massive difference in your costs, as shown in the graphic below. The same thing applies during the summer with air conditioning; raising your thermostat to a slightly higher temperature (while still at a comfortable level, of course) will allow you to save more money.

On days when there is no blistering heat, temporarily turning off the AC system and opening windows can be highly economical whilst still efficiently cooling the interior of the house via wind ventilation. Opening windows on both sides of the house as well as windows on different levels ensures a sufficient cross breeze of cool air from lower levels pushing out the hotter air that rises. Plus the fresh air is always a wonderful change of pace!

Another important aspect to be aware of is that your doors and windows are properly fitted. If there are any gaps, comfortable interior air may escape and unwanted outside air may creep in so be sure to seal any of the areas that may need it. Insulation goes along with this, both cool air in the summer and heat in the winter can become diminished from insulation that is not thick enough. Also, adding insulation in your attic keeps the heat from escaping during the winter and lowers the temperature of the attic in the summer. Each of these components must work together cohesively in order for you to get the most out of your money. Having an efficient system keeps your home comfortable, your wallet full, and your need for HVAC service and repair at a minimum.