Understanding How an ERV Can Save Energy and Improve IAQ in Plantation, FL

Using an energy recovery ventilator (ERV) is a cost-effective way to remove contaminants and improve indoor air quality without driving up HVAC operating costs. Installing an ERV in your Plantation, FL home will help get rid of pollutants and allergens that can damage your health.

What Is an Energy Recovery Ventilator?

An ERV is a ventilation device that uses energy extracted from stale indoor air removed from a building to precondition freshly filtered outdoor air brought into the building. This can be done year-round and through all different weather patterns.

ERVs reduce the load on your HVAC system during summer. Then, the cool, dry air removed from the building cools and reduces the humidity of the warm, moist outdoor air. During winter, warm, moist air from the building heats the cold outdoor air.

How Does an Energy Recovery Ventilator Work?

The ERV has a wheel that is typically constructed of a polymer material with a desiccant (drying agent) bonded to the surface. This wheel slowly rotates through the supply and exhaust air streams to recover heat and moisture.

The wheel rotates for the desiccant to pick up moisture from the higher humidity airstream and deposit the water in the lower humidity air stream. This happens while the desiccant also absorbs heat from the higher temperature airstream and releases the heat to lower temperature airstream.

ERVs are designed to recover energy lost during the exchange process. ERVs recapture a portion of the energy stored in the conditioned air, cutting comfort and HVAC operating costs.

ERVs Keep Humidity Levels in Check

High humidity levels make the air feel warmer. However, during winter, these levels make the indoor air dry, which causes dry skin and itchy throats that affects your overall comfort at home. An ERV’s ability to transfer moisture helps keep your home’s humidity levels in check.

An ERV dehumidifies and preconditions the air it brings inside during the summer while it retains the moisture from the air that it’s sending outside during winter. It maintains the relative humidity level in your home while also minimizing the strain on your HVAC system.

The ERV provides greater humidity control by reducing air humidity as it comes inside during the summer. It also introduces moisture to the incoming air stream during winter. Thus, it provides filtered, preconditioned air to the HVAC equipment.

ERVs Promote Fresh Air

ERVs are designed to provide the best air quality. It is visible as it filters all incoming air before it’s distributed throughout your home. It removes indoor air pollutants, such as pet dander and dust, as it sends stale air outside.

ERVs provide filtered, preconditioned air to the HVAC equipment that improves the quality of your inside air. Without ERVs, many homes have problems with poor indoor air quality caused by contaminants such as pet dander, dust, pollen and volatile organic compounds.

ERVs, providing fresh air, help you avoid respiratory problems, headaches and fatigue caused by indoor air pollution. Fresh air allows you to sleep better, improves mental clarity and increases energy levels.

ERVs Reduce Energy Consumption

An ERV can transfer heat between incoming and outgoing streams of air. This design saves energy and allows your HVAC system to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors.

The ERV system preconditions the outdoor air, thus reducing electrical demand during the summer. Also, during winter, the transfer of heat and moisture by the ERV wheel saves energy. An ERV reduces the HVAC load, saving energy and reducing wear and tear.

Furthermore, an ERV doesn’t have a condenser and only uses a fan to operate; thus, its energy usage is relatively low. The ERVs also reduce HVAC equipment size, leading to substantial energy savings.

Installation Requires Technical Expertise

If you’re planning to install an ERV, contact a professional who will take your budget, the square footage of your home, and your current HVAC system into consideration when recommending the best ERV for you. To learn more on how ERV works or other ways to improve your indoor air quality while saving on energy costs and maintaining a comfortable home, get in touch with the professionals at HI-VAC Air Conditioning Service.

Image provided by iStock

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