Air Exchange Systems

Air Exchange Systems Minneapolis MN

Posted by on Mar 27, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Minnesota Furnace and AC Repair Service MN, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | 0 comments

Healthier Homes Using Air to Air Exchange Systems Can your own home be making you sick? The overall performance and indoor air quality of any home is dependent upon its ability to function properly. Homes of today are uniquely designed with energy efficiency in mind. Hence, the structure becomes much tighter raising serious indoor air quality, comfort and structural concerns. Indoor Air Quality Ventilation and Moisture Control Newer construction methods can improve air tightness conflicting with the ability of your home to function properly. Air flow, ventilation, temperature control, air filtration, dust (mites) problems and more are very serious concerns for the health of your family. Question: Can your own home be making you sick? Answer: Yes. Indoor Air Quality. Any structure must have the ability to breathe by mechanical means and function as a complete system. Any building structure is composed of a wide variety of manmade, natural building materials and components that need to function in harmony during our adverse weather conditions throughout the year. Moisture problems can lead to significant health problems and indoor air quality concerns of its occupants. Structural dry rot or overall weakness can derive from the inability of the structure to prevent or move moisture away from the home. Major respiratory ailments can develop from these unhealthy conditions, especially in the elderly and young infants. Indoor Air Quality concerns include a lack of ventilation which can be a contributing factor from within our homes as a major contributor of Sick Building Syndrome (SBS).  PDF version Inadequate ventilation is very common in many homes which can lead to mold growth and other respiratory ailments causing Indoor Air Quality issues. There are more than 100,000 species of molds. Over 1,000 different molds are found in the United States. Some common molds found are species of Cladosporium, Aspergillus, Penicillium and Alternaria. These molds produce airborne toxins called Mycotoxins which can cause very serious breathing difficulties, memory and hearing loss, dizziness, flu like symptoms and possible bleeding of the lungs possibly related to our indoor air quality. Many other indoor air quality symptoms may include running nose, eye irritation, chronic cough, congestion, severe respiratory problems and aggravation of asthma. Common molds can be toxic and sometimes lethal for individuals with weakened immune systems. A 1996 Mayo Clinic study had linked chronic sinus infections afflicting over 37 million people to molds. Radon, The Invisible Intruder, effecting our indoor air quality can be lethal effecting an estimated 20,000 people per year. Ranked #2, and a known leading cause of Lung Cancer in the United States. There are many causes for alarm that can be related to our indoor air quality and this disease to include much tighter surroundings within our own indoor living environments. As we spend up to 90% of our time indoors, the air we breathe, as much as 200,000 liters per day, can be related to our indoor air quality and contains microbiological and solid airborne submicroscopic particulates that can be dangerous and very harmful to our immune system especially in young infants. Over 90% of these harmful particulates are less in size than .03 microns. One micron is 100 times less than a human hair follicle. Most filters generally capture less than 10% its required rate of filtration and are very restrictive to air flow, which can therefore increase energy costs and reduce heating and cooling performance. Penetration into structures from cracks, non-existent moisture barriers and weakened foundations may increase the risk of radon and affecting our indoor air quality. This poisonous gas is now the leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Second-Hand smoke can also cause severe respiratory...

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Air Exchanger Systems MN, Energy Recovery Ventilators and Indoor Air Quality

Posted by on Mar 6, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Heating and Air Conditioning System, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | 0 comments

Indoor Air Quality and Radon Radon, The Invisible Intruder, effecting our indoor air quality can be lethal effecting an estimated 20,000 people per year. Ranked #2, and a known leading cause of Lung Cancer in the United States. There are many causes for alarm that can be related to our indoor air quality and this disease to include much tighter surroundings within our own indoor living environments. As we spend up to 90% of our time indoors, the air we breathe, as much as 200,000 liters per day, can be related to our indoor air quality and contains microbiological and solid airborne submicroscopic particulates that can be dangerous and very harmful to our immune system especially in young infants. How Radon Enter A House Over 90% of these harmful particulates are less in size than .03 microns. One micron is 100 times less than a human hair follicle. Most filters generally capture less than 10% its required rate of filtration and are very restrictive to air flow, which can therefore increase energy costs and reduce heating and cooling performance. Penetration into structures from cracks, non-existent moisture barriers and weakened foundations may increase the risk of radon and affecting our indoor air quality. This poisonous gas is now the leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Second-Hand smoke can also cause severe respiratory problems and kills over 50,000 people every year. There are over 2,000 known chemicals and 200 toxins including carbon monoxide. Heat Recovery Ventilators and Energy Recovery Ventilators are complete whole house ventilation systems that incorporate a supply motor and an exhaust motor in one unit. The supply motor draws fresh air in from the outside and the exhaust motor pushes stale contaminated air out. The two air steams are separated by a heat/ energy recovery core which tempers the air making it the most comfortable solution for a healthy indoor environment. How Radon Enter A House Radon Reduction A heat recovery ventilator, or HRV, also called an air-to-air heat exchanger, can be installed to increase ventilation which will help reduce the radon levels in your home. An HRV will increase ventilation by introducing outdoor air while using the heated or cooled air being exhausted to warm or cool the incoming air. HRVs can be designed to ventilate all or part of your home, although they are more effective in reducing radon levels when used to ventilate only the basement. If properly balanced and maintained, they ensure a constant degree of ventilation throughout the year. HRVs also can improve air quality in homes that have other indoor pollutants. There could be significant increase in the heating and cooling costs with an HRV, but not as great as ventilation without heat recovery. The filter in an HRV requires periodic cleaning and should be changed twice a year. Replacement filters for an HRV are easily changed and are priced between $10 and $25. Ask your contractor where filters can be purchased. Also, the vent that brings fresh air in from the outside needs to be inspected for leaves and debris. The ventilator should be checked annually by a Minnesota heating, ventilating, and air conditioning professional to make sure the air flow remains properly balanced. HRVs used for radon control should run all the time. The MDH recommends that all Minnesota homeowners test their homes for radon. The results of a properly performed radon test will help homeowners determine for themselves if they need to take further action to protect their family from the health risks of radon in the home. Are Radon Levels Regulated? In Minnesota, radon levels in new...

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Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning Minneapolis MN

Posted by on Feb 28, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Heating and Air Conditioning System, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | 0 comments

Minnesota Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning Contractor Radon, a colorless, odorless gas, is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. Radon can seep into a home from underground and, if left to accumulate, high levels of radon can cause lung cancer. Health officials hope that by increasing public awareness of environmental health risks, such as radon, homeowners will take steps to improve indoor air quality, leading to healthier homes and communities. January Is Radon Action Month In Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has proclaimed January as Radon Action Month in Minnesota, urging residents to take simple and affordable steps to test their homes for harmful levels of radon gas. Radon Is a Major Health Risk in Minnesota MDH estimates that one in three existing Minnesota homes have radon levels that pose a large health risk over many years of exposure. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and more than 21,000 deaths are attributed to radon each year. Radon exposure, however, is a preventable health threat. Plan to conduct a radon test in your home, if you haven’t already. As the second leading cause of lung cancer, concentrated radon gas is nothing to ignore. Make Your Home a Healthier Environment To Live In! Has Your Home Been Tested For Radon? If radon test results indicate that levels in your home are only slightly elevated—less than 4 pCi/L (picocuries per liter of air): Caulk cracks or gaps in the slab, foundation, or framing—wherever your home contacts soil—to inhibit radon gas infiltration. This step also improves the success of other radon reduction strategies. Open exterior crawl space vents to increase air flow and dilute radon buildup. Install a heat recovery ventilator (HRV) also called an air-to-air heat exchanger, can be installed to increase ventilation which will help reduce the radon levels in your home. An HRV will increase ventilation by introducing outdoor air while using the heated or cooled air being exhausted to warm or cool the incoming air. HRVs can be designed to ventilate all or part of your home, although they are more effective in reducing radon levels when used to ventilate only the basement. If properly balanced and maintained, they ensure a constant degree of ventilation throughout the year. HRVs also can improve air quality in homes that have other indoor pollutants. There could be significant increase in the heating and cooling costs with an HRV, but not as great as ventilation without heat recovery. You can view a map of possible radon gas levels in your area. The filter in an HRV requires periodic cleaning and should be changed twice a year. Replacement filters for an HRV are easily changed and are priced between $10 and $25. Ask your contractor where filters can be purchased. Also, the vent that brings fresh air in from the outside needs to be inspected for leaves and debris. The ventilator should be checked by a Minnesota heating, ventilating, and air conditioning professional to make sure the air flow remains properly balanced. How Healthy Is Your Home? Radon Occurrence Maps As stated by the USEPA, “the purpose of this map is to assist National, State, and local organizations to target their resources and to implement radon-resistant building codes. This map is not intended to be used to determine if a home in a given zone should be tested for radon. Homes with elevated levels of radon have been found in all three zones. All homes should be tested regardless of geographic location.” The EPA has more information about residential radon exposure and what people can do...

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Air Exchange Systems MN | Air to Air Exchange Systems MN

Posted by on Feb 14, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Heating and Air Conditioning System, Minnesota Furnace and AC Repair Service MN, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | 0 comments

Air Exchanger Systems, Energy Recovery Ventilators and Indoor Air Quality This type of ventilation is a mechanical process in which the entire volume of stale air confined within a dwelling is exhausted to the outdoors, while fresh air is supplied back into the building. In many new homes, moisture trapped from within the building wall cavity may cause excessive moisture, therefore causing possible decay and structural rot. Other hazards may include possible internal depressurization and back-drafting of the building. This condition can cause dangerous levels of carbon monoxide to elevate within the home. It is highly recommended that any excess relative humidity is removed from the home by an air exchanger. Other concerns are homes that have been super-insulated beyond the required minimal standards by local code, excessive air tightness, lack of moisture prevention during the construction process, poor attic ventilation and minimal moisture barriers. How Does an Air-to-Air Heat Recovery Ventilator Work? Air Exchangers provide an effective means of ventilation for your home. There are several types of applications for your home. A typical installation usually occurs in the mechanical room near the furnace. HRV or (Heat Recovery Ventilator) are most beneficial in colder climates by recovering over 70% of sensible heat from indoor air. As the exhaust air passes through the heat recovery core, heat from the indoor air stream is transferred with fresh air back into the home. ERV or (Energy Recovery Ventilator) systems can recover additional heat, due to the latent heat of moisture removal from the air stream. These systems are very effective in warmer, more humid climates. Air Exchangers can provide continuous ventilation and moisture control for your home. Overall performance and health of your home is dependent on proper ventilation, humidification and precision temperature control. The design and application is essential in building function and system operation. Air Exchangers are a cost effective and efficient means of improving indoor air quality. Typical applications include residential homes, indoor pools, health clubs, smoking rooms, dental offices, beauty salons, automotive stations and much more. Moisture control is essential in maintaining a healthy indoor environment. Energy-efficient operation lowers operating costs. Annual electrical consumption of less than 2 amps is comparable to a 100 watt light bulb. Application may include pre-heat accessories, control modulation and duct fabrication. Benefits Of Air Exchangers If you have allergies or respiratory problems, you know the importance of fresh outdoor air.  Being in an air-tight home or office can cause some problems for people with these health issues.  Long Minnesota winters do not make it easier.  According to the EPA, studies have shown that air within homes can be more seriously polluted then even the most industrial cities.  With some people spending approximately 90% of their time indoors, they are more susceptible to the effects of indoor air pollution. Proper ventilation with an air exchanger could help. Even if your home is older and not tightly insulated, it is likely that in the winter, the air inside your home gets stale.  Air exchangers can help bring fresh outdoor air inside the home, while exhausting an equal amount of stale air, providing a healthy balance to your ventilation system. Air Exchange Ventilator (AEV) Benefits: Reduce excess humidity which can cause mold, mildew and deterioration to your home Reduce dangerous pollutant fumes or gases Remove particles like dust and dander Help reduce heating and cooling costs for highly insulated homes Remove “stuffiness” and help freshen up the home Air exchangers (also known as heat recovery ventilators or air-to-air heat exchangers) can be used in conjunction with your other residential or commercial HVAC equipment, such...

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Air Exchange Systems MN | Heat Recovery and Energy Recovery Ventilators

Posted by on Feb 9, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Furnace or AC System, Heating and Air Conditioning System, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | 0 comments

Improving Indoor Air Quality Since the 1970s, when we started building tighter energy-efficient homes, the level of indoor air pollutants has steadily increased. Why? Contaminated air which once escaped through cracks around windows and doors is now trapped inside with you and your family. Today’s energy efficient construction methods make homes so tight that mechanical ventilation is needed to remove contaminants which cause mold, mildew or poor air quality. An energy saving Heat Recovery or Energy Recovery Ventilator is an ideal choice to bring a continuous supply of fresh, filtered air into your home while expelling stale air. Did You Know?  Everyday Activities add to Indoor Air Pollution Studies have found that simple things like mopping the kitchen floor, taking a shower, doing the laundry or just breathing can generate enough moisture in your home to raise the relative humidity to an unhealthy level. Increased humidity and moisture inside your home can lead to severe structural damage that you can’t see until it’s too late. Increased moisture levels can also dramatically affect your family’s health due to increased mold and mildew. Heat Recovery and Energy Recovery Ventilators Heat Recovery and Energy Recovery Ventilators are the next step in creating a clean, healthy environment for your family. What Are HRVs and ERVs? To understand these products and their functions, here are a few things to remember. Heat Recovery Ventilators (HRVs) are recommended for colder areas of the country that have longer heating seasons as well as drier desert areas of the South. Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs) are designed for warmer, humid climates with longer cooling seasons. Over a period of time, older homes began to sport new, tight windows and doors, insulation and vapor-barrier improvements, modern siding, and caulk for every crack through which air might pass. New homes left the drawing board designed to be tight, and builders became familiar with the new materials and skills needed to meet market demand and updated regulations. Homes were finally becoming thermally efficient. What some began to wonder, though, was whether they were livable. It turns out that those heat-robbing drafts had a role in the ecosystem of the home—they provided fresh air to breathe. Without realizing it, builders before the energy crisis had been installing an effective ventilation system. If you could afford the heating bills, it worked. How Do They Work? Heat Recovery Ventilators (HRVs) An HRV is designed to bring a continuous supply of fresh air into a home while exhausting an equal amount of contaminated air. HRVs use what is called a “sensible” heat recovery core. This special aluminum core transfers heat from the exhaust air stream to the incoming air stream. Fresh incoming air is tempered by the heat that is transferred from the outgoing air so you save on energy costs. Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs) Energy Recovery Ventilators work much like the HRV but it is designed with a different type core. The enthalpic core at the center of the unit transfers heat and moisture from the incoming air to the outgoing air. The air brought into the living area is cooled and the humidity is reduced for maximum comfort. The load on your air conditioner is less and you save on cooling costs. Depending on the model, HRVs can recover up to 85 percent of the heat in the outgoing airstream, making these ventilators a lot easier on your budget than opening a few windows. And, an HRV contains filters that keep particulates such as pollen or dust from entering the house. Although an HRV can be effective in the summer months, when it will...

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Heating, Air Conditioning and Ventilation Systems MN

Posted by on Jan 31, 2012 in Air Exchange Systems, Heating and Air Conditioning System, Minnesota Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor | Comments Off on Heating, Air Conditioning and Ventilation Systems MN

January is National Radon Action Month – Now’s a Good Time to Test Your Home For Radon! January is National Radon Action Month for good reason. It’s the time of year when we spend the most time indoors, and a lot of that time is spent in the lowest levels of our homes, where radon levels tend to be higher. Radon is invisible and odorless, so you won’t know if you have it without the test. Now is a good time to check your heating, air conditioning or other ventilation systems! The easiest way to test for radon is to obtain a test kit. The kit is relatively inexpensive and easy to use. Most hardware stores sell the kit for $15 to $20, and you’ll spend a similar sum when you send the kit to the manufacturer to obtain the test results. If you do have high radon levels, you won’t have to move. Radon can be mitigated through various means. How Can I Find Out If My Home Has a Radon Problem? Radon is colorless, odorless and tasteless. Therefore, a radon test is the only way to find out how much radon is in your home. Performing a radon test on your own is easy, inexpensive, and can be done privately. Every home is unique due to its local soil, construction details, maintenance and degree of depressurization. Therefore, test results from nearby homes cannot be relied upon to predict the radon level in another home. Likewise, previous test results may not reflect current and future radon levels for a home that has been remodeled, weatherized or had changes made to its heating, air conditioning or other ventilation systems such as exhaust fans. Radon Reduction A heat recovery ventilator, or HRV, also called an air-to-air heat exchanger, can be installed to increase ventilation which will help reduce the radon levels in your home. An HRV will increase ventilation by introducing outdoor air while using the heated or cooled air being exhausted to warm or cool the incoming air. HRVs can be designed to ventilate all or part of your home, although they are more effective in reducing radon levels when used to ventilate only the basement. If properly balanced and maintained, they ensure a constant degree of ventilation throughout the year. HRVs also can improve air quality in homes that have other indoor pollutants. There could be significant increase in the heating and cooling costs with an HRV, but not as great as ventilation without heat recovery. The filter in an HRV requires periodic cleaning and should be changed twice a year. Replacement filters for an HRV are easily changed and are priced between $10 and $25. Ask your contractor where filters can be purchased. Also, the vent that brings fresh air in from the outside needs to be inspected for leaves and debris. The ventilator should be checked annually by a Minnesota heating, ventilating, and air conditioning professional to make sure the air flow remains properly balanced. HRVs used for radon control should run all the time. The MDH recommends that all Minnesota homeowners test their homes for radon. The results of a properly performed radon test will help homeowners determine for themselves if they need to take further action to protect their family from the health risks of radon in the home. If you have already tested for radon, we congratulate you. And we encourage others to do the test. U.S. Surgeon General Health Advisory “Indoor radon gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and breathing it over prolonged periods can present...

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