What Are Energy Recovery Ventilators?
Energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) are systems that can be incorporated into your HVAC system to remove stale air from your home while bringing fresh air in. Energy recovery ventilators also transfer humidity, which is great for us here in Georgia, where we deal with intense humidity in the summer. Typically they are installed in your attic and feature two fans, one that draws fresh air in and another that pushes the stale air out. They are also sometimes referred to as air exchangers.
In particular, these systems were developed in response to indoor air quality problems homes in colder climates experienced in the winter when their homes generally stayed closed up. Consequently, ERVs also feature a heat exchanger that works to retain the warm temperature in your home even as they move fresh air in. However, these are systems that can be used year round, even in the summer when you run your cooling system.
The Benefits of Installing an Energy Recovery Ventilator in Your Georgia Home
Perhaps the greatest benefit of an energy recovery ventilation system is that it supports and improves the energy efficiency of your HVAC system. Your HVAC system is responsible for nearly half of your total energy consumption (and in some cases, more than half), and therefore the more efficient your system can be, the better. The less energy you use to power your system, the lower your monthly utility bills and the smaller your carbon footprint. It's a win-win for you and the environment.
Some additional benefits of installing an energy recovery ventilator include:
- Reduces wear and tear on your HVAC system
- Improves overall airflow and ventilation in your home
- Can help mitigate stale odors in your home
- Removes contaminants, such as pollen and other allergens
- Keeps your home a stable, comfortable temperature
Second to improved energy efficiency is the improvement of your indoor air quality. As mentioned above, ERVs can help remove contaminants from your air, including pollen and other allergens. If you have asthma or another respiratory condition, an ERV may be a good option for you.
Is an ERV Right for Your Home?
As you can see, ERV systems have a lot of benefits, but are they right for you and your home? The first thing you want to consider is where you live. Living in a state with high humidity means that ERV systems are especially beneficial for us, unlike heat recovery systems (HRVs) which are better in colder climates. They not only help manage humidity levels, but they can reduce how much you need to run your AC system, saving you money on monthly energy costs.
Three important things to consider before purchasing an energy recovery ventilator system:
- Do you have a hard time keeping your home at a stable, comfortable temperature?
- Do you have allergies?
- Do you have poor indoor air quality?
You also need to consider your budget. With installation, and depending on the make and model you select, ERV systems can cost a couple of thousand dollars. While this is a good value, given that ERV systems last for around 20 years, this is still a significant upfront cost. You may also want to consider how long you plan to stay in your house. An ERV system may make your home more attractive to potential buyers, but it may not be worth the investment to you if you are planning to move soon.
Before deciding to purchase an ERV system, you should consult with one of the technicians at Premier Indoor Comfort Systems. We can help you determine if an ERV is a good investment for you.