Adding a heat recovery ventilator

The weather in South Bend, Indiana, provides every type of extreme. The summers bring temperatures in the mid to high eighties with plenty of humidity. The spring and fall seasons tend to be wet, chilly and windy. The winters last the longest, and the conditions are freezing cold and snowy. The temperature regularly drops into the teens or even the negative digits and the snow piles up in multiple feet. There is rarely a time when we’re not running either the air conditioner or the furnace. The cost of heating and cooling is considerable, making up approximately half of the energy bills. I’ve done my best to tighten up the house and eliminate energy waste. New windows and doors, caulking, weatherstripping and insulation help to seal up leaks and prevent heated and cooled air from escaping. However, these preventive measures also stop outdoor air from coming inside. While this is beneficial for energy efficiency, it’s bad for indoor air quality. Since we can rarely open a window in South Bend, pollutants get trapped inside. Dust, dander, pollen, mold spores, VOCs and all sorts of contaminants get endlessly circulated throughout the house and can lead to health concerns. I wasn’t quite sure what to do to improve indoor air quality. I asked the HVAC contractor who handles the maintenance of the furnace and air conditioner. He recommended a heat recovery ventilator or HRV that works to bring fresh air into the home without energy losses. Once the HRV was installed, I immediately noticed the improvement. The house stays cleander, feels more comfortable, and the air smells fresher. Because the ventilator uses the outgoing stale air to pre-heat the incoming air, it also helps to reduce the workload of the furnace and reduce utility bills.


South Bend Indiana HVAC system