When you close up your home against the cold of winter, you also reduce the amount of ventilation that provides fresh air for your living environment. An effective way to ensure excellent indoor air quality in your home while also maintaining appropriate levels of heating is by using a heat recovery ventilator.
Heat recovery ventilators, sometimes called HRVs or air-to-air heat exchangers, provide whole-house ventilation while recycling a significant portion of the heat that would otherwise be lost through the ventilation process. They increase the supply of fresh air for your home but also recover much of the heat energy you’ve already paid for.
The most effective method of using a heat recovery ventilator requires installing the unit in your home’s attic. There, the system pulls in air from inside your house. This air has already been heated and still contains a substantial amount of heat energy. The indoor air enters a heat exchanger within the HRV. This heat exchanger contains aluminum plates or other types of heat-transfer plates equipped with several individual air channels.
While the unit is pulling in already-heated air from inside your home, it is also pumping in fresh outdoor air and sending it into the same heat exchanger. Inside the heat exchanger, the two air streams pass close together without mingling. As they get close, the heat from the outgoing air warms the incoming air, transferring existing heat — recovering it — before it is lost to the outdoors. The warmed incoming air continues into the air-distribution channel of your HVAC system, where it is circulated throughout your home to provide needed ventilation.
Heat recovery ventilators are very efficient, recovering and transferring as much as 80 percent of the heat energy contained in the outgoing air. Because so much heat energy is recovered, your overall utility expenses drop and stress on your home heating system is reduced.
Calgary-area homeowners can rely on Arpi’s Industries Ltd. for high-quality professional heating and air conditioning services. Contact us today for more information on using a heat recovery ventilator and the benefits these devices can provide in both improved home comfort and reduced winter heating bills.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about ventilators and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock