Category: indoor air quality

Installing exhaust fan

Why Home Ventilation Matters

Today’s homes are built using a variety of green building techniques. These methods create tighter, more efficient homes that can save homeowners money on energy bills. Tight building envelopes also keep air impurities inside the home including any chemicals used in cleaning products, paint, building materials and more. This combination makes a strong case for a proper home ventilation system to maintain your home’s air quality and energy efficiency.

Many factors influence the appropriate type of ventilation for a home including local code requirements, building size and types of appliances. Here are three of the most common ventilation systems:

  • Exhaust Only – Exhaust-only systems use an exhaust fan, typically placed in a kitchen or bathroom, to remove stale inside air and moisture. They often run on a timer so they can work throughout the day. This type of system relies on the home’s natural air leaks to allow outside air to enter. Exhaust-only systems do not properly manage the influx of outside air.
  • Supply Only – A supply-only system includes a fan that brings fresh air into the home and uses the home’s natural air leaks to allow inside air to escape. A filter can be added to the intake to trap pollen and other air pollutants before they enter the home. A dehumidifier can be added inside the home to control humidity levels. Supply-only systems bring in outside air but do not effectively manage removal of inside air.
  • Balanced – A balanced system includes both exhaust and supply, controlling ventilation at both ends. This system includes separate fans to manage air supply and air exhaust. Overall, this is a better ventilation system because it provides qualities of both exhaust-only and supply-only systems. However, it may be more costly to run.

Does your home have a ventilation system? Do you have questions about your home’s air sealing and ventilation? Contact us with any questions.

Kids laying on floor watching TV

Four Problems Caused By a Crawl Space

If a home is built on a crawl space, it can mean trouble. Because a crawl space is in direct contact with the ground, the impact it can have on a home and residents is significant. Here are four problems that can be caused by a crawl space and how spray foam insulation can help:

  1. MOISTURE DAMAGE
    Moisture is the number one enemy of a crawl space. Moisture damage from drainage and its direct contact with the earth can go unnoticed and lead to a host of other problems! Air sealing and insulating your crawl space as well as ensuring proper drainage around your home can help eliminate moisture and any associated problems.
  2. POOR AIR QUALITY
    The air quality within a crawl space has a direct impact on the air quality inside your home. As your home naturally breathes, moist air flows up from the earth. The damp air in a crawl space gets pulled into living areas of a home through unsealed areas between the crawl space and the first floor of your home (such as air ducts, wiring holes, plumbing penetrations, etc). Any air quality issues in a crawl space are guaranteed to impact a home’s living area.
  3. PESTS
    Damp conditions in a crawl space create ideal living conditions for pests, combined with any warmth from heating ducts and the wood joists that serve as a food source. Using spray foam insulation to insulate and air seal a crawl space eliminates access points for pests and the moisture that attracted them in the first place.
  4. LOST ENERGY DOLLARS
    If the integrity of a home’s structure and indoor air quality isn’t enough to convince a homeowner to insulate and air seal a crawl space, consider the impact on energy bills. An unsealed crawl space can lead to uncomfortable temperatures on the first floor of a home, uneven temperature between rooms and elevated heating and cooling bills.

Your crawl space is a huge opportunity to save energy, save money and improve a home’s indoor air quality. Upgrading your crawl space is an investment in your home and your family’s health. What are you waiting for? Contact us to schedule your free estimate!

Spray foam insulation

Spray Foam: Insulate and Air Seal in One!

Air leaks occur as a natural byproduct of the construction process. Air leaks are exactly what you think: when conditioned air leaks from a home or unconditioned air leaks into a home.

Traditionally it was believed that these natural air leaks were the right way to ventilate a home. Today’s building science proves this isn’t the case. Uncontrolled air leaks by way of a “leaky home” can cause too much or too little air to enter or leave the home. Either way, this can result in poor indoor air quality.

Air sealing is the process of reducing the amount of uncontrolled air that moves in and out of a home. Sealing air leaks can reduce energy costs, help with inconsistent temperatures around a home, keep out bugs and outside allergens, and increase your home’s overall indoor air quality.

Spray foam insulation can insulate and air seal in one step. It is applied as a liquid and expands to fill a cavity. By simply insulating with spray foam, you are air sealing at the same time. If you are looking for a two-in-one product, spray foam insulation is your answer.

Interested in learning more about spray foam and getting an estimate for your next project? Contact us today and learn more.