Homeowners know that an efficient and properly functioning HVAC system is critical to the comfort of their home. These systems provide heat in the winter and cooling in the summer, but what does the “V” in “HVAC” stand for?
That V stands for ventilation, but what exactly is ventilation? How does proper ventilation affect the comfort of your home?
Read on to learn more, and if you find that you have even more questions, then give Delaware Heating and Cooling a call. Our licensed and experienced HVAC professionals are always ready to answer your questions and to help you make your home more comfortable and energy efficient than ever before.
What Is Ventilation?
If it weren’t for ventilation, you would be breathing and re-breathing the same stale indoor air today that you were breathing yesterday and the day before. Through ventilation, the stale air inside your home is replaced with fresh, clean outdoor air.
Additionally, ventilation helps to regulate your home’s temperature as it ensures that your heating and cooling systems can function as they are supposed to. With proper ventilation, it is possible to eliminate issues with humidity and unpleasant odors that would otherwise accumulate within the home.
In other words, ventilation is just as important to the comfort and healthfulness of your home as good heating and cooling.
The Types of Ventilation
In general, ventilation is provided either naturally or via mechanical means. Natural ventilation is achieved via open windows, trickle vents or louvers. Of course, this type of ventilation also may occur inadvertently thanks to poorly insulated walls, doors and windows that are not well sealed and leaky ducts. While natural ventilation can work exceptionally well in some regions, it is inadequate in others where it might be responsible for increased issues with humidity.
Mechanical ventilation may be provided by a ceiling fan or by a more complex system of ducts and fans that make it possible to control how much outdoor air is brought indoors as well as when and where this outdoor air is distributed within the home.
The ventilation equipment in any HVAC system is just as crucial as the means for heating and cooling the home. The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers has made several intensive studies into the importance of proper ventilation. Thanks to their work and the work of scientists through the years, we now understand how important ventilation is to keeping homes comfortable and safe.
The Benefits of Mechanical Ventilation
How do you and your family benefit from proper ventilation? It turns out that there are numerous ways. These may include:
- Controlling the amount of fresh air that enters your home
- Choosing the fresh air source
- Removes condensation from the air
- Improves air quality
- Prevents allergies
Essentially, your home’s ventilation system works on the principle that some fresh air is good, but too much can actually be harmful. This is because when too much outdoor is coming inside, it forces your HVAC system to work harder. Consequently, you are likely to see your energy bills increasing.
Air balance problems also may occur in homes where more air is entering the space than is leaving the space. If you are noticing that you have doors that open by themselves or migrating odors that you would prefer to remain more contained, then you may be dealing with air balance issues.
However, the reverse also may cause a problem. When not enough outdoor air is entering the residence, then the indoor air becomes stuffy. Undesirable, dirty air gets trapped indoors, which means that you are more likely to be inhaling toxins and contaminants.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, good mechanical ventilation is crucial for controlling indoor air quality. This is because ventilation is critical for dispelling both odors and moisture. Ventilation also is a key component for dispersing indoor contaminants.
Controlling Condensation and Moisture
Too many homeowners live with condensation problems because they believe that nothing can be done about it. The truth is that these issues may be easier to fix than most people realize.
Moreover, it is vital for homeowners to realize that condensation and moisture problems are responsible for promoting the growth of mold and mildew in homes. In homes that have mold problems, the inhabitants may encounter these issues:
- Increased symptoms of asthma or other respiratory allergies
- Irritation of the nose, throat and eyes
- Skin irritation and redness
- Difficulty breathing as mold issues begin to affect the lungs
Clearly, moisture problems within the home are extremely serious. Fortunately, proper mechanical ventilation can correct these issues with surprising speed. If you believe that your home has a mold problem and it is affecting the health of your family, then it’s wise to call Delaware Heating and Cooling to find out how we can help you get rid of condensation and moisture issues with mechanical ventilation.
Improving Air Quality and Preventing Allergies
Some homes with inadequate ventilation do not have problems with moisture and condensation. Still, the inhabitants may notice that the air quality inside their home is less than ideal. The symptoms are particularly noticeable for those who have asthma or allergies, but even people who do not normally suffer from these conditions may notice unusual symptoms because of contaminants in the air.
Runny noses, watering eyes, itchy skin, sneezing and even eczema all may caused or exacerbated by poor indoor air quality. Once again, the answer may be to improve your home’s ventilation. This simple correction may help to protect you and your family from common allergy symptoms. Contact Delaware Heating and Cooling to learn more about how you can prevent your family from suffering the severe symptoms of seasonal allergies.
How Do You Choose the Right Mechanical Ventilation?
While many ventilation systems are part of overall HVAC systems others are entirely separate. This means that you may not need to purchase an entirely new HVAC system in order to improve your home’s ventilation.
Of course, if your home’s existing HVAC system is more than a decade old, then it may make sense to have its efficiency checked by an HVAC technician. The technology that goes into HVAC systems has undergone a revolution in recent years, making it more energy efficient and affordable than ever before. Chances are good that you could save considerable money on your energy bills through a complete HVAC system overhaul or replacement.
Additionally, keep in mind that whether you opt for an entirely new HVAC system or decide to add new means of mechanical ventilation to your existing system, you will be improving the comfort level of your home. At the same time, you will be helping to ensure the health of your family by potentially eliminating the source of mold problems and improving indoor air quality so that your family can breathe easier.
Call Delaware Heating and Cooling Today
Do you see condensation on your windows when you wake up in the morning? Do you find that odors that you wish would stay confined to the bathroom or the kitchen are permeating your home? Are your family members bothered by incessant issues with runny noses, watery eyes and burning throats?
If your answer to any of these questions is yes, then it may be time to have the HVAC professionals at Delaware Heating and Cooling assess the ventilation system in your home. While it may be time to replace your HVAC system, it also may be possible to correct issues of indoor air quality and moisture with some additional mechanical ventilation equipment. This could make your home feel more comfortable than it has in years.
Call today to learn more.