As the weather begins to heat up as we move into the middle of the year here in the Central Valley, you’ll want to find effective ways to stay cool in your house, but without having to run the air conditioner all the time. But what’s the main way to enjoy fresh air currents? Opening up windows. And when it’s 90°F outside, opening the windows means bringing in the heat along with the fresh air. Even letting the windows open for a short time means having to run the air conditioner for a longer stretch to cool the house down again.
There is a way out of this problem. You can recover the energy used to run the AC to cool the air and use it to cool incoming fresh air. That sounds strange, right? But it is possible thanks to the energy recovery ventilator, a system we offer that can be a game-changer for your comfort and the energy efficiency of your house.
Hot Fresh Air Becomes Cool Fresh Air
When you have an energy recovery ventilator (ERV) installed in your residential HVAC system, you won’t need to open up windows to have fresh air brought indoors. The ERV has access to an outdoor vent, where it draws fresh air into the ventilation system. During a summer day, this fresh air is also hot, but the ERV has a way of cooling it down that doesn’t require it to expend large amounts of energy. In fact, most of the energy it needs is already inside the house in the form of the cooler indoor air.
If you’ve used the AC to cool down your home, the AC expended energy to draw heat from the air. The ERV draws on a current of this cooler (but also stale) air into the ventilation system at the same time it draws in the fresh outdoor air. The two currents pass through the ERV, and through a process called counterflow heat exchange. The warm air naturally loses heat to the cooler air, so the fresh outdoor air gets cooled down before it goes into the house, while the stale air is exhausted outside.
With only a minimum of energy used to run the ERV, it has “recovered” the energy the AC used to cool the indoor air and used it to cool the incoming air. The house has fresh air without bringing in a load of heat.
It Works in Reverse Too
Here’s great news: during winter, an ERV works the other way. The already heated indoor air is used to warm up a fresh current of outdoor air. You can enjoy fresh air on even the coldest days without forcing the furnace or other heating system to struggle.
We are a family-owned business and we put the customer and their home first. Energy recovery ventilators are only one of the many home energy improvements and solutions for indoor air quality in Modesto, CA that we offer. Talk to our experts today to learn more about what we can do for your house.
Live Green, Save Green! Call Greenhart for great indoor air quality solutions in Modesto, CA and the Central Valley.