Ventilation and Indoor Air Quality

So you’ve sealed and insulated your home for maximum energy efficiency. That’s great. But have you paid attention to your ventilation? Without a healthy exchange of air, your indoor air quality will suffer. Excess moisture, particulates, fumes and even carbon-monoxide emissions are the hallmarks of a poorly ventilated home. Here are just two of the problems polluted indoor air can cause:

  • Gases from combustion appliances and fireplaces can build up in a poorly ventilated home. 
  • Excess moisture can lead to mold growth, which is harmful to both your family and your home.

Ventilation can address these threats — and others — to your health and your home. Further, it can make your home more comfortable. Let’s look at the common types of ventilation and the smart options you might want to consider:

  •  Natural: This is type of ventilation that many pre-1970s homes — especially those that are much older — have. Older homes that haven’t been made weathertight over the years invite drafts through windows, door frames and spots where cables, wires and lines enter the home. These leaks allow outside air to get into a home, but they’re also costly, because they cause a loss of conditioned air. 
  • Spot: These are typically the exhaust fans you use in the kitchen and the bathroom. They’re highly effective at removing moisture and fumes. 
  • Whole-house: These are the the most comprehensive systems available. Heat-recoveryenergy-recovery ventilating system and energy-recovery ventilating systems provide a regular, healthy exchange of air, sending polluted air out of your home and drawing in fresh air from the outside. In the winter, an HRV uses heat in the outgoing air to warm your incoming air, thus helping your furnace do its job.  

Have questions about the air quality in your home?