Home Ventilation: Should You Open And Close Vents During Certain Seasons?

Home ventilation system, open, close, vents

One question a lot of folks with a fully integrated home ventilation system often have is how to get the most out of it throughout the changing seasons. If it’s not an issue you’ve ever pondered you may be surprised to hear that there’s a few little tricks of the trade which can increase the efficiency of the system and thus the quality of air within your home.

The primary aim of a home ventilation system is to ensure that there is a constant stream of clean air. The system itself should take care of the distribution to various rooms, however there are steps you can take to make sure that the system is working at peak efficiency within each room. By applying a little basic scientific knowledge you’ll be able to ensure your home always has the cleanest air possible.

We all know that hot air rises where as cold air sinks. This basic scientific knowledge is all that you need to know in order to improve your home ventilation system. If you have a full home system then you’ll have various vents, some which will extract the air from the room and some which will feed fresh, filtered air into the room. To simplify the process, we’re going to split the year into two seasons, summer and winter. You’ll have to make the decision yourself on when it’s best to switch from a summer based customisation to a winter one.

Summer Configuration

In the hot summer months you’re going to have to deal with the hot air that will collect and stagnates close to your ceiling. By opening a higher placed extraction vent the hot air that’s stuck above your head will be drawn out of the room, creating a space for the cooler air to flow in to. If you can get a feed for fresh air in a lower part of the room you’re going to create a beautiful circulation of fresh air.

Winter Configuration

Unsurprisingly this is the opposite of the above. A fresh air feed high in the room with a lower extraction point will ensure that there is a constant feed of fresh air. Pulling the cold air off the floor makes room for the warmer, fresh air to occupy once it has been pumped into the room.

The added effect of following these guidelines will be a more consistent temperature throughout the house. If your home ventilation system enables you to change the temperature of the fresh air that is fed into your house, you’re likely to diminish the need for excessive heating in winter or opening windows in summer which will save you money and combat the spread of summer allergens.

Open All Vents?

There are those who think that opening all vents within your property is the best course of action. Whilst this will ensure plenty of points that stale air can be drawn from the room, it doesn’t help with creating a circular flow. To keep the air in your property as fresh as possible, you need to establish which points should be open and closed to create the most natural and effective flow of air.

In short you want to create the most effective and natural flow of air with fresh air taking the place created when stale air is extracted. The best way to achieve this is to extract high in summer and low in winter as hot air rises whereas cold air sinks.

How do you arrange your vents for your home ventilation system at home? What’s the most effective method you’ve found for ensuring the most effective flow of fresh air?

Image – Graeme Paterson