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Why do we need HRV?


With the current building code, installing a heat recovery unit is becoming a necessity rather than a choice. It is important that you have adequate air supply to all rooms and extraction from bathrooms and kitchens. Insufficient ventilation can lead to mold growth, condensation damage and unhealthy living conditions. Our team at Balance Point can advise you on the most suitable ventilation system to match your home's airtightness level.

What is balanced ventilation?

What is balanced ventilation?

Balanced ventilation is the best way to provide fresh air to a space. It means we're simultaneously adding air at the same rate we're taking it out. This allows us to:

  • Extract heat from the outgoing air and apply it to the fresh air

  • Maintain a pressure balance between inside and outside the space

  • Control the point of entry, allowing for exemplary filtration of all the air in the home


How will balanced ventilation improve my quality of life?

  • Alleviate allergies when you are inside your home by filtering the air you breathe

  • Eliminate mold growth by providing ventilation and removing excess humidity

  • Diluting and removing indoor pollutants, like off-gassing building materials and radon

  • Removing CO2 buildup during the night, allowing for more restful sleep

  • Reducing your energy costs

  • No more 'old house smell'

  • Should I install HRV or ERV?
    HRVs recover only heat, and exhaust all moisture outside the home. This is preferable in Western Washington, as we typically see excess moisture inside the home that needs to be removed. HRV cores are les expensive but do require a condensate drain. ERVs transfer both heat and moisture, so they are good for dry climates, cold climates, or hot-humid climates. They can also be useful in very large spaces that don't egerate excess humidity like a shop, warehouse or office. ERVs do not require condensate drains, as the moisture will be transferred to the incoming air stream. HRVs will need to collect and drain the condensate to an approved location.
  • Does the HRV device need to be in a conditioned space? Where are some places it’s commonly put in the home?
    While there is minimal heat loss in our well-insulated units, our recommendation is that our units, as well as our distribution components, are located within the thermal envelope. Our units are commonly installed in mechanical rooms as well as conditioned attics, mud/laundry rooms and closets as they are very quiet
  • If you have an HRV, do you still need a bath fan?"
    The short answer is no. The HRV can be designed to exhaust air from the bathrooms continuously. This will meet code requirements of 20cfm continuous ventilation in a bathroom. Bathroms that are tied in with the HRV system are generally dryer, fresher and healthier than bathrooms with intermittant exhaust fans. Your towels will get dry between uses!
  • I have allergies. Will installing a fresh air ventilation system help?
    Yes! The sandard filter we install is MERV 13, which is fine enough to filter out all pollen from the incoming air stream. We also have a HEPA Option, which can filter finer particles and even wood smoke. HEPA Filters 99.97% of particulates from the air.
  • Will HRV help with a damp home?
    HRVs will indeed dry out a home in Western Washington for much of the year. Cool air holds less moisture than warm air, so when cool air is brought into the home, its relative humidity goes way down as it is warmed in the heat exchanger. This is also why HRVs need condensate drains - the warm, moist interior air will be lowered in temperature in the heat exchanger and will be unable to hold as much water. This water will be forced out of the air as condensation, which wll need to be collected and channelled away.


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