Air Changes-Hour 2

Constant Fresh Air

The heat recovery systems used in our OTechnology designs deliver a constant stream of fresh filtered air without drafts. Indoor pollution sources that release gases or particles into the air are the primary cause of indoor air quality problems in homes. Inadequate ventilation can increase indoor pollutant levels by not bringing in enough outdoor air to dilute emissions from indoor sources and by not carrying indoor air pollutants out of the home.

Environmental Benefits

Your constant fresh air home can provide a more comfortable living environment because it includes properly engineered heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system sizing, improved duct and equipment installation, improved filtration, and whole-house and spot ventilation to dilute and remove indoor pollutants.

Constant fresh air is one component to a passive house system. The passive house system is a very well insulated, virtually airtight building that is primarily heated by passive solar and internal heat gains from occupants, cooking, bathing, or electrical equipment. The passive house standard is the highest building efficiency standard in the world, with the promise of reducing the energy consumption of buildings by up to 80% while providing superior comfort and air quality—all at minimized additional upfront cost. When coupled with renewable energy systems, such as solar, using passive heating and cooling puts true “zero-energy” buildings within reach. If you are interested in the entire system, please look into adding on the following elements to your OHome, OClass, or OHousing designs.

Health and / or Social Benefits

Lower outdoor air ventilation rates in homes in one study were associated directly with increased prevalence of asthma and allergic symptoms in children, with a dose-response trend, and in another study with a non-significant decrease in recurrent wheezing in infants. A third study, however, found that lower outdoor air ventilation rates, although not directly associated with risk of bronchial obstruction in infants, synergistically increased the risk of bronchial obstruction associated with indoor sources present. Similar but less strong “effect modification” by ventilation rate were observed with risks from other indoor sources, including textile wallpaper, environmental tobacco smoke, and dampness.

Economic Benefits

Your home will have a higher resell value because it was built to have constant fresh air, thereby increasing indoor air quality and reducing illness. Improving indoor air quality has also been shown to increase concentration and focus so that people are more productive in their lives and jobs. In addition, the heat recovery system is a method of salvaging a portion of the energy wasted by inefficient HVAC systems.