Ventilation plays an important part in ensuring your home cooling system works to its full potential. Without adequate ventilation, hot air accumulates and gets trapped inside your attic causing severe strain on your home cooling systems, leading to excessive use, malfunctions and costly repairs. We are Colorado's top-rated home ventilation installers, with industry-leading products and unmatched customer service since 2003!
Ventilating Your Home
Home ventilation is crucial in improving indoor air quality, energy efficiency, and overall home health. According to the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), your home's living area should be ventilated at a rate of 15 cubic feet per person per minute (CFM). Though many building codes require a certain amount of ventilation to pass inspection, these standards often fall short of providing the benefits of optimal home ventilation, especially in larger homes operating home cooling and heating systems.
Home Ventilation Strategies
Natural ventilation is the uncontrolled movement of air through your home via open doors, windows, passive vents, cracks, and leaks. Natural ventilation alone is usually inadequate to properly ventilate your home.
Spot ventilation uses smaller, mechanical fans and vents to improve air flow in specific areas of your home, such as bathrooms fans in bathrooms and exhaust fans in your kitchen. Spot ventilation does not have any whole house ventilation benefits.
Whole house ventilation calls for multiple mechanical fans and vents to deliver controlled, robust ventilation throughout your entire home. Whole house ventilation systems provide exceptional airflow to improve indoor air quality and promote better home cooling.
Home Ventilation Facts vs Fiction
Click to Bust The Myths
"Homes built after 1992 have all the vents they need to install a whole house fan system."
BUSTED: Current building codes require only 2 sqft of net free vent area, far short of the 7 sqft needed to operate a whole house fan sized for a 2,500 sqft home.
"A whole house fan will operate the same way, with or without additonal attic ventilation."
BUSTED: According to QuietCool, the leading whole house fan manufacturer, fans can only move as much air as they can exhaust. While the fan will still move air, operating a whole house fan with insufficient attic ventilation causes strain on the fan motor resulting in lack-luster performance and the possibility of causing significant damage.
"You don't need additional attic ventilation becuase air will escape your home naturally anyway."
BUSTED: The US Department of Energy recommends 2-4 times the normal area of attic vents to operate a whole house fan efficiently. Without additional attic ventilation, stagnant air gets trapped against the roof and will eventually make its way back into living spaces through seams in insulation, drywall, and other nooks and crannies — defeating the intended purpose of a home cooling system!
"Adding more ventilation is expensive and unnecessary."
BUSTED: While additional attic fans and vents my increase the price of your whole house fan installation, these one-time costs are a fraction of the amount you'll have to pay to repair or replace an overworked and underventilated whole house fan system.
Whole House Fan Ventilation Requirements
Whole house fans are among the most energy-efficient home cooling and ventilation systems available today, capable of replacing hot, stagnant air with a fresh, cool breeze. But operating a whole house fan system without adequate ventilation greatly limits the fan's capabilities, resulting in malfunctions and disappointing performance.
The U.S. Department of Energy recommends 2 to 4 times the normal area of attic vents for optimal whole house fan performance, and manufacturers often require additional ventilation to maintain factory warranties.
DON'T LET ANYONE TELL YOU OTHERWISE!
QuietCool Whole House Fan
QuietCool, the leading manufacturer of whole house fans, also recommends having at least 1 SQFT of net free area venting for every 750 CFM provided by your system. That means if your whole house fan provides 4,700 CFM of airflow, you'll need a minimum of 6.32 square feet of net free venting to properly ventilate all the air you are pulling in. Whole house fans are designed to move a tremendous amount of air in order to replace all the hot, polluted air inside your home. Without enough ventilation to expel the air as fast as it is introduced, your whole house fan will not be capable of completing air exchanges as intended.
Regardless of the make and model of your whole house fan, the more powerful your whole house fan system is, the more ventilation will be required — it's as simple as that!
Colorado Home Ventilation
The Department of Energy's recommendation of one square foot of net free area for every 750 cubic feet per minute of fan capacity is based on milder, low-altitude climates where the air is dense. In Colorado's dry, high-altitude climate the air is about 75% less dense than lower altitude climates, meaning the air is much thinner. Because of the difference in air density, Colorado whole house fans need about 1SQFT of net free vent area per 1,000 CFM of fan capacity to exhaust indoor air efficiently.
Many Colorado whole house fan installers don't discuss the need for additional attic ventilation, leaving your system prone to dismal performance and a variety of costly problems. If another installer says you do not need any additional ventilation with your whole house fan, ask them to back up their claim to counter manufacturer and DoE recommendations — they're either unaware of these guidelines or neglecting them on purpose!
Balanced Home Ventilation Systems
A balanced home ventilation system is essential when operating whole house fans, air conditioners and other home cooling systems. Balanced ventilation systems expel, at minimum, an equal amount of polluted air to fresh air introduced, promoting better indoor air quality and energy efficiency by reducing strain on your home cooling systems. A balanced ventilation system is created using multiple passive vents, fans or powered vents depending on the amount of airflow needed to properly ventilate your home.
Passive vents provide additional ventilation 24/7, without the need for a powered motor.
Powered Vents are controlled by thermostat to automatically expel air inside your attic.
Attic fans release air through existing vents from inside your attic.
The Best Home Ventilation System
Finding the best ventilation system for your home depends on the amount of existing ventilation and the amount of airflow needed to optimize your new whole house ventilation system. Use the table below as a guide to calculate the existing amount of ventilation. Simply enter the number of existing vents next to the corresponding vent type, then follow the given formula to find the total amount of existing vent free area.
Tip: Identify the type and number of existing vents in your home from on top of your roof, or by searching your home address on Google Earth. Determining the size of your existing vents can be done by measuring them from inside your attic.
Once the amount of current ventilation is found, use the following tables for QuietCool whole house fans and Triangle whole house fans to determine the amount of additional ventilation your home needs to operate a whole house fan system efficiently.
QuietCool Ventilation Requirements
Triangle Ventilation Requirements
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Whole Home Ventilation Benefits
Whole house ventilation provides extensive benefits no matter what home cooling system you may have. Installing additional ventilation to your existing air conditioner system can reduce home cooling costs by as much as 50-90% by removing the superheated air trapped in the upper levels of your home and allowing your A/C to cool your home more efficiently from top to bottom.
In addition to better home cooling, whole house ventilation systems protect your home from damaging moisture buildup year-round, preventing mold, and extending the life-span of your roof and insulation.
Beat The Summer Heat
Attic fans and vents release the hot, stagnant air trapped against your roof during the summer months to promote better home cooling effects and energy efficiency.
Cut home energy costs, improve indoor air quality and extend the lifespan of your roof with a whole house ventilation system from CO's top-rated installer!
During the summer, attic fans and vents:
Ventilate your attic automatically by expelling superheated air trapped inside your home
Promote better home cooling effects by maintaining comfortable temperatures throughout your home
Protect shingles, roofing, insulation and ducts from heat-related damage
Reduce the strain on existing home cooling systems and cut A/C related energy costs by up to 90%
Prevent Winter Moisture
Adequate attic ventilation protects your home year-round by automatically maintaining dry conditions in your attic during the winter months.
Protect your roof and insulation from mold-causing moisture build up and avoid costly future repairs with a whole house ventilation system before it's too late!
During the winter, attic fans and vents:
Automatically remove excess humidity and moisture in your attic to prevent mold
Protect your roof from leaks and structural decay caused by ice-damming
Prevent moisture accumulation from damaging insulation and structural materials
Fight weakening of internal structures caused by mold and fungal growth