Energy Recovery Ventilation Lets the Fresh Air In

During the colder months, many Cincinnati homeowners take precautions to seal leaks around their home. But when houses are sealed up tight, poor air quality can become an issue, making ventilation an important consideration. Winter is not the time to throw open the windows to let the fresh air in, so some form of mechanical ventilation system is required. That’s when energy recovery ventilation comes into play.

Energy recovery ventilation systems use a heat exchanger to remove heat from warm air and transfer that heat to cold air. In the winter, these heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) send warm, indoor air through the heat exchanger, then use the recovered warmth to help heat the cold air brought in from the outside. This process minimizes the amount of energy needed for heating and cooling, as it can recover a significant amount of the heat from the air going over the heat exchanger.

In summer, the process is reversed, with the heat removed from the warm outdoor air before circulating that air inside the home.

A second type of energy recovery ventilation system, an energy recovery ventilator (ERV), has the added ability to exchange water vapor as well as heat, allowing better control over a home’s humidity levels as well.

A whole-house ventilation system will keep the entire house supplied with fresh air through the use of fans and a series of air ducts. There are a variety of whole-house systems, including exhaust systems, which actively push air out of your home, and supply systems, which pull fresh air into your home.

HRV and ERV systems are more expensive to install and they do require more maintenance than other whole-home ventilation systems, but the savings in heating and cooling costs can make up the difference.

If you would like more information about energy recovery ventilation, contact Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. We’ve provided quality service to the greater Cincinnati area since 1910.

Image via Shutterstock.com

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"We scheduled an estimate AND a tune-up. We knew something was wrong with our furnace, but hoped we could make it through the rest of the season. Upon telling Bill what our furnace was doing, he warned us immediately what the possible outcome was going to be; a cracked heat exchanger. He watched the flames roll backward, tested carbon monoxide levels, which were so high they meter’s last reading was 5,600 before saying “high”. He immediately shut it down, tagged it, and explained that with levels that high and children in our home he wanted off right away. He continued his inspection and showed us via a camera that not only was it cracked in multiple places, but had holes all over it. He gave us a few options for repairing it; his knowledge as well as genuine concern was beneficial and refreshing. Luckily we also scheduled an estimator, Micah, to come too and we were able to get costs between repairing and replacing (with several options). We decided to replace with a much higher efficiency furnace and one sized properly to our home. Hands down, not only did they both provide us great service and knowledge, but without sounding dramatic, they may have saved our lives. This was our first time calling Apollo, but it won’t be our last."
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