New homes are more energy efficient than ever. While this is ideal for keeping your heating and cooling bills small, it’s not so great for bringing ample fresh air inside.
Newer residences are tightly sealed, which means they don’t “breathe” like older houses do. Subsequently, your residence may begin to smell stuffy, feel too humid or experience problems with condensation. If you have allergy or asthma sufferers in your family, they might report growing symptoms.
Fortunately, it’s not hard to improve the ventilation in your residence in Lincoln. Many of the answers that we’ll review in a minute are simple and inexpensive.
1. Open Windows and Screened Doors
This is the fastest approach to get fresh air into your house during mild temps. But it’s essential to note this usually isn’t a year-round option and can lead to problems if someone in your household has seasonal allergies. If so, you shouldn’t open windows during the early morning. That’s when the pollen counts are the greatest, according to Mayo Clinic. You also shouldn’t open them during dry, windy days, because the weather can irritate allergies.
2. Turn on Exhaust Fans in Your Kitchen and Bathrooms
Using these fans draws out stale air, excess moisture, odors and other indoor contaminants. They’re also reasonable to operate. An exhaust fan costs about $7-$15 each year in electricity if you were to run it 24/7, according to the Center for Energy and the Environment (CEE).
If you’re interested in doing this, the CEE advises looking for an ENERGY STAR® ventilation fan that provides nearly noiseless, constant operation. These fans often come with a sensor that will turn them on automatically when humidity is too high, so you won’t have to remember to turn it on or off.
However, it’s essential to know that an exhaust fan can negatively affect your house’s temperature, since it’s exhausting air that you’ve already heated or cooled.
3. Keep Your Home’s Humidity Regulated
The right humidity level for your residence is between 30–50%, according to Mayo Clinic. While the ideal concentration of humidity won’t enhance ventilation, it can improve your house’s indoor air quality and keep your home comfortable at a more energy-efficient temperature.
If the humidity is too low, you could suffer from dry skin, a scratchy throat or itchy eyes. Dry air can also impact wood flooring and furnishings in your residence, causing them to splinter. On the other hand, humidity that’s too high can make air appear stale or stuffy. It can also lead to mold and mildew growth and irritate allergies or asthma.
The smartest way to keep humidity in check is with a whole-home solution. We offer humidifiers and dehumidifiers that work with your HVAC system. You don’t need to transport an inefficient portable system from room to room, spilling water as you walk.
It’s also important to note the correct humidity amount can also make air more pleasant at an energy-efficient temp, helping you pay less on energy bills.
4. Purchase a Ventilation System
Installing a mechanical ventilation system is one of the top methods to bring in more fresh air into your residence year-round. There are two different styles—heat recovery ventilation (HRV) and energy recovery ventilation (ERV). These systems continuously remove stuffy indoor air and replace it with fresh outdoor air.
HRV is ideal for cool climates, since it holds on to the heat from the indoor air it exhausts. ERV is good for hot locations, as it removes warmth and moisture from your air. Some areas can benefit from both units, so ask our AW Heating & Air Conditioning ventilation experts about what’s ideal for your Lincoln home.
If stale or ongoing odors are an issue in your home, you can also get a whole-house air purification system. These systems give an added level of filtration, which can also help with reducing pet dander, allergens and bacteria in your home.
Our ventilation professionals are here to help you select the best solution for your residence. Contact us at 402-318-5351 right away for a free, no-obligation home comfort assessment. We’ll view your present equipment and learn about your needs before providing our advice on the best options to increase ventilation in your home.