The Benefits of Better Ventilation
Why is proper ventilation important? This is a question that many homeowners deliberate on when their HVAC company brings up ventilation concerns, or when they have concerns about their indoor air quality.
These are the top three reasons seeking out adequate home ventilation is important.
#1 - Humidity Removal
Fort Collins and the surrounding CO area may not seem like the most concerning place for home humidity, but there are many ways that humidity can increase without proper ventilation:
Showering - Don’t underestimate how humid a shower can make your home, especially if you have a large household.
Drying laundry inside - Did you know that for every load of laundry you leave to dry inside, two liters of water are released into the air?
Cooking - Steam from cooking humidifies the surrounding area.
Moisture Rising From the Ground - This can be a significant contributor to excess moisture inside your home. In older homes especially, water from the ground moves in an upward direction into wood, plaster, and paint.
Don’t air conditioners remove humidity? Yes, they do. But they have to work harder to do so if there is too much moisture, so this is where additional humidity removal options would come in handy for energy efficiency.
#2 - Removal of Toxic Gas Buildup
You may not think your home would contain many toxic gasses, but there are actually many sources of this found in the average home. They are called “VOCs”--Volatile organic compounds.
These are emitted from everyday materials such as:
VOCs are simply unavoidable in modern society, so it’s important to accommodate them and not jeopardize your health.
There is a good saying to keep in mind regarding indoor air quality, coined by a famous building designer named Jack Hébert: “Build tight, ventilate right”. A well-insulated house is necessary for comfort and energy efficiency, but it needs to be balanced with proper ventilation so those VOCs can be eliminated.
#3 - You May Avoid Getting Sick
As cold weather approaches, the days of runny noses, headaches, and sore throats loom ahead of us.
Have you ever wondered why it is that colds, flus, Covid, and other viral respiratory illnesses hit so hard in the winter? Despite popular belief, it isn’t at all due to exposure to the cold or staying in wet clothes. These are just coincidental.
The primary reasons you get sick more often in the wintertime are:
Viruses enjoy colder weather - Viruses multiply faster in colder, dryer temperatures.
People spend more time in close quarters - People spend significantly more time indoors with others during the colder months. There are also lots of major indoor celebrations surrounding holidays such as Christmas or New Year’s. This increases the transmission of germs.
Having air cycled out of your home can reduce the density of airborne viruses and result in fewer illnesses. There is also something else better ventilation can provide to discourage virus duplication: added humidity.
Didn’t we just discuss how harmful humidity can be to your home? Actually, humidity is a good thing–in the right amount. What you should avoid is excess humidity. Too little humidity feels uncomfortable and creates a breeding ground for viruses.
What is Proper Ventilation?
Optimal ventilation will continuously cycle all of your indoor air out with fresher air while not disturbing the heating and cooling function of your HVAC system. Leaving a window open with a fan on is a good solution for some, but it’s usually not ideal for comfort.
Give us a call at (970) 707-5226 if you would like to discuss your home’s ventilation and explore a solution with a home comfort expert today.