Ventilation systems with heat recovery

Proper ventilation means bringing fresh air in and cooling the building, home during the hot summer days. While natural ventilation is a less costly and efficient way of cooling down the temperature during the summer days, the mechanical ventilation, on the other hand, has it’s advantages as well. So what are the pros and cons for natural ventilation systems and mechanical ventilation systems, whether for home or commercial?

Natural ventilation

Natural ventilation is environmentally friendly and free. When using the natural ventilation means that we are using the movement of the outside air and the pressure differences to move the indoor air out and bring in the outside air. This can be achieved by simply:

  • Opening the windows and or doors;
  • Stack ventilation.
    • Advantages:
      • Humidity control;
      • Lower operating costs;
      • Health and wellness.
    • Disadvantages:
      • Not as effective in hotter climates;
      • In winter cold air comes in;
      • Depending on the environment in the area, it can be noisy, dusty.

Mechanical ventilation

With decreasing air quality with every passing year, combined with increased pollution, especially in the big cities, the need for better air quality is on the rise, and for a good reason. Mould, fungus, damp, condensation, allergies, tiredness, headaches, just to mention a few, are a good reason to have proper air venting. As I have said earlier, the natural ventilation is a start in getting fresh air and cooling the place down in the process. In comparison with mechanical ventilation, it lacks some vital elements. So what more mechanical ventilation does? Here are 6 benefits from having  proper mechanical ventilation:

  • It reduces the noise;
  • It is improving the indoor air quality;
  • Provides fresh air year-round;
  • Controls the flow of the air intake to the required health and safety levels to ensure the right amount of fresh air requirements per person is provided;
  • It stops the condensation during the wintertime;
  • Reduces the temperature while providing fresh air year-round;
  • It has health benefits and is increasing productivity when per UK office ventilation requirement standards are met.

Our approach is NOT-“one-size fits all”, as we understand that each customer, be it that is commercial or domestic, has unique requirements for each individual premise and comes with a certain budget. We will work with you to find the ventilation system product that is best suited for the project while staying within the budget.

Questions and answers

Q: What is the difference between mechanical ventilation fan and exhaust fan?

A: The difference between the two is their application. A ventilation fan is providing fresh indoor air, and an exhaust fan removes the odours from indoor air, whether in a home or a commercial space.

Q: What is a ventilation system?

A: Ventilation is a process by which fresh air is brought into space, and stale air is removed. A ventilation system represents the way by which the stale indoor air is removed, and the fresh air is brought in when natural air pressure and gravity is not enough. This can be a combination of air ducts and fans.

Q: What are the types of ventilation?

A: Exhaust, supply, balanced and heat-recovery ventilation.

Q: What is local exhaust ventilation?

A: Local exhaust ventilation is a system through which the airborne contaminants such as dust, moisture, fumes, vapours are being sucked out of a room. Examples of rooms where exhaust ventilation is being installed: kitchen, bathrooms or any other areas in a workplace that is contaminated.

Q: What is supply ventilation?

A: A supply ventilation is a system through which, outside fresh air is brought into a building by using a fan. The components of a supply ventilation system are a fan and air duct. When using this system to pressurise a room or more, the outdoor pollutants(pollen, dust) are kept at bay through filtering the air. It is also preventing drafting combustion gases from any open flames such as fireplace and appliances. The downside of using a supply ventilation system is the cold air drafts that will be felt during the cold days. There are two ways to avoid  the cold air drafts:

  1. Using an in-line duct heater. This will definitely increase the operating costs;
  2. Mixing the indoor air with the outdoor air prior to entering the building.

Q: What is an energy-recovery ventilation system?

A: Is a mechanism through which a room is provided with fresh air mixed with indoor air in a controlled manner while minimising the operating costs during the winter and summertime. There are two types of  energy recovery systems:

  1. Energy Recovery Ventilation(ERV);
  2. Heat Recovery Ventilation(HRV).

Both energy recovery systems have a heat exchanger that is used to mix the outdoor air with the indoor air prior to entering any space to minimise the operating cost of cooling or heating. The difference between the two is:

  • ERV( energy recovery ventilation)  helps control the humidity by transferring some of the moisture from the outside air into the exhausted, dry indoor air. In the hotter days, the ERV( energy recovery ventilation) system is pre-cooling and dehumidifying and in the colder days is humidifying and pre-heating. This process also keeps the heat exchanger core warmer, and with it, any possible problems with freezing are minimised during the cold days.
  • HRV(heat recovery ventilation) known also as MHRV( mechanical heat recovery ventilation) is used to reduce the cost of heating and cooling. The way it works, when stale indoor air is removed, an HRV captures its energy whether warmth or cold and it will transfer it to the incoming fresh air. An HRV having about 60-95% energy recovery rate of the exhausted air, it is significantly improving the energy efficiency of buildings.

Q: What is balanced ventilation?

A: Balanced ventilation is a process through which equal amounts of fresh outdoor air and polluted indoor air are being supplied and exhausted without causing negative or positive air pressure in the room. A balanced ventilation system usually consists of two fans and two air ducts. While a fresh air supply and exhaust vents can be installed in any room. A balanced ventilation system is designed and installed to provide fresh air in the rooms that are mostly occupied, exhausting at the same time the moisture and polluted air right from where it is being generated like kitchen, bathrooms and laundry.