Air Exchangers vs Duct Cleaning Residential & Commercial Ventilation
What is air exchanger? An air exchanger is a unit that brings in fresh air from outside and removes stale air from inside, whether it be a residential or commercial property. Just like humans, buildings need to breathe.
Because new construction has better insulation and less air leaks, it creates an environment where the air inside the home because it is better sealed, now becomes stale. It also can trap in toxins, being released from carpets, furniture, including cabinetry.
Now that materials are treated with fire retardants, pesticides if shipped from overseas as well as formaldehyde, and other pollutants, and oxygen depletion as it is used, not just by humans but fire places, stoves, etc. If there is an attached garage to the dwelling, pollutants can migrate into the living space.
Depending on the property, it can have more humidity than other homes/workplace, thus if windows are frosted or condensating, for example may be an indication of needing to check on the indoor air quality.
Why not just open the window? Well, that is one way to do it, but isn’t as efficient and isn’t practical when away at work and having to do this in multiple rooms, for example and clearly, not very efficient. For commercial high rises with sealed windows, this is not an option. Also in some places the outdoor air quality without filtration is poorer than the indoor air quality.
Even Health Canada states that the “second most important strategy for improving IAQ is to ensure efficient ventilation to introduce outside air into the building and exhaust polluted indoor air in order to remove or dilute it.” canada.ca – The first being minimizing the sources of indoor air contamination.
The Canada.ca site goes on to say “Generally, they require ventilation rates of about 5 to 10 L/s of outdoor air for each house occupant or roughly a complete house air change every three hours, but these rates vary according to the number of occupants, house volume, occupant activities, and the presence of indoor sources of pollutants. In a typical house, these target ventilation rates are established to dilute air pollutants generated within the house (including carbon dioxide, humidity, and odours) as well as some pollutants off-gassing from the house structure, building materials, furniture, and consumer products.”
The Third Strategy recommended by Health Canada is to “remove pollutants that are already in the air through the use of air cleaners or filtration. Filtration is most effective for pollutants such as particles and has been shown to be an effective method for reducing the risk of particle-related mortality.”
What are the other options to get rid of stale air and bring in fresh air?
Air Exchangers – ERV’s vs HRV’s
They are both similar in the sense that they both supply fresh air to the home and exhaust the stale air, however to maintain energy efficiency – they recover the energy from the exhaust air in the process. Main difference: HRV transfers heat only – while ERV transfers heat and moisture.
HRV – Heat Recovery Ventilation – mainly for dry non- humid climates like Western Canada and mid United States.
Removes moisture and provides fresh air into the home that is already pre-heated by the existing outgoing air.
No coils, runs by fans.
ERV – Energy Recovery Ventilation – great for Ontario weather when it ranges both cold or humid or both.
In winter – an ERV will pre-heat and humidify incoming air from outside the dwelling/facility.
In summer – an ERV will pre-cool and dehumidify the incoming air from outside the dwelling/facility.
No drain required for condensation, ERVs also have the ability to transfer moisture through membranes.
ERV’s easily allow for maintaining the humidity around 40-50% in home environments.
Be sure to have extra housing if in colder climates
Can lower air conditioning energy consumption by up to 12% a week.
Indoor air quality – this is a giant topic on its own – however suffice to say bad stuff floating around in a home is not good, especially if it is well sealed. To know for sure one can order an IAQ test (Indoor Air Quality Test) which should be done by a licensed professional. This will give real results of what is going on in the air of a home or commercial property.
Duct Cleaning vs Air Exchangers – An air exchanger is a great everyday appliance to maintain fresh ongoing oxygenated air in the home or commercial building, while duct cleaning is good every few years to ensure debris, dander, microbes in the vents don’t recirculate around the home to be re-breathed in or cause a fire hazard by ending up on the furnace heat exchanger.
For all your options, contact our office. We are a Canadian Company! For an instant free estimate, call us at 416-410-3777 fill out the form below or see our locations on our contact us page:
Canaduct offers fast efficient appointments for our commercial and residential clients for these services:
Commercial duct cleaning
Air vent cleaning,
Dryer duct cleaning
Indoor Air Quality Specialists
Odour removal Specialists (powerful yet all natural treatments)
Fire or Flood restoration
Ensure your heating and cooling systems at your home or business are operating at peak efficiency. Our air duct quality service will help you breathe clean, healthy air at work or home; saving money on energy costs and can help improve the bottom line.
Do you have multiple workplace facilities, franchises, homes or offices?
Canaduct’s broad range of coverage provides a huge duct cleaning service area in Southern Ontario including the Greater Toronto Area. No need to deal with multiple companies, technicians and locations. One call will solve it all.