February 23, 2012

Though newly-constructed homes and retrofits are very sound and energy-efficient, a side effect is that the air becomes trapped and stagnant. With extreme temperatures in the Phoenix Valley, it’s not pleasant to open the windows to let in the fresh air on a cold winter day or during a sweltering heatwave. The solution to this dilemma is a climate-control system called a heat recovery ventilator, or HRV.

  • How HRVs work: HRVs utilize two fans that circulate airflow in opposite directions. One fan blows fresh air into your home, and the other fan blows stale air out of your home. Both airflows pass through a heat exchanger — where conduction occurs — without the airflows mixing. During the heating months, the out-flowing heated air warms the in-flowing cold air, providing your home with fresh air while at the same time reducing the workload of your heating unit. The opposite hot/cold conduction occurs during the cooling months when the air-conditioned indoor air will cool the in-flowing hot outdoor air before it is circulated through your home.
  • Efficient air: If you have a well-insulated, energy-efficient home and you don’t want to compromise utility costs, an HRV is your solution and not a compromise. An HRV accomplishes this two-fold task by conditioning the in-flow of fresh air which in turn offsets your heating and cooling costs. This gives you the freedom to circulate fresh outdoor air into your home and enjoy the same energy efficiency.
  • Clean air: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency states that the average home’s indoor air is seven to 10 times more polluted than outdoor air. HRVs improve the quality of indoor air by incorporating filters to trap pollen, dust, and other contaminants. Circulating fresh air into your home several times a week is vitally important to your family’s health, comfort and your home’s indoor air quality.

Remember that even in extreme temperatures, you don’t have to compromise your home’s energy efficiency in order to breathe healthy indoor air. If you have any questions, contact Wolff Mechanical and let our professionals help your family enjoy fresh air year-round.

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