In an effort to be energy efficient, many homes have become as air-tight as possible. This is good for maintaining energy efficiency, but not so good for healthy ventilation. It can be hard to find ways to properly ventilate your home during winter without losing heat, but there is a device that can help: an energy recovery ventilator (ERV). An ERV can bring fresh air into your home without compromising your energy efficiency; in fact, it can improve your energy efficiency. How does an ERV work? Let’s take a look. How It Works An energy recovery ventilator is a box-like device that has a heat exchanger at is core. The way an ERV works is this: in the winter, your stale, warm indoor air is expelled to the outside; at the same time, a small fan inside the ERV draws the cold air from the outside into the ERV. In the heat exchanger, the energy from the outgoing air is applied to the incoming air; this adds heat and moisture to the incoming fresh air, pre-treating it before it can enter your HVAC system. During the summer, the opposite happens: the outgoing cool, dry air is applied to the fresh incoming warm air, which cools and dehumidifies it. Why pre-treat? Pre-treating the air helps to either pre-cool or pre-heat the fresh incoming air, depending on the season. This means less work for your HVAC system. Why Install an ERV? The pre-treating of the incoming air takes some of the work load off your HVAC unit; this helps increase energy efficiency, which you’ll see in your monthly energy bills. An ERV also allows for a continuous stream of fresh air into your home, increasing the ventilation and indoor air quality. Reducing the amount of work your system has to do helps increase the system’s longevity and can reduce the incidence of repair. An ERV should be installed by a trained expert, so if you think an energy recovery ventilator is a good fit for your home in Ham Lake, call the professionals at Air Mechanical, Inc., today!
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