It’s at this time of year that poor ventilation is really obvious. Streaming windows, lots of humidity and, for those that suffer the most, this could mean mould and dust mites in the home.
There are various ways to ventilate according to building regulations, from extract fans and passive stack to mechanical extract and MVHR (heat recovery). Yet, often overlooked is a ventilation strategy that sits under ‘alternative methods of ventilation’ - ‘PIV’ or Positive Input Ventilation.
PIV is the process in which fresh air is supplied by a fan located in the loft area into the upstairs landing area of a building, where air is tempered using the heat that naturally accumulates at the top of a house. It is then filtered and gently pushed into the home, causing positive pressurisation. By continuously supplying fresh, filtered and warm air this method displaces the damp, stale air that causes condensation, which escapes via natural leakage points. As a result, indoor air quality, and health, is improved.
The same PIV principle can also be applied in apartments and flats where a wall mounted unit delivers the air into a central corridor.
PIV was developed by Nuaire in the 1970s in conjunction with the North Eastern Gas Board, which was seeking a low cost solution to clear condensation and humidity caused by sealed up chimneys and modern central heating systems.
Wendy Thomas, Residential Product Manager at Nuaire, said: “People do not appreciate that bathing, cooking, washing and drying clothes creates up to four pints of moisture in the home per person per day. There’s no way to see this moisture until it clings and condenses on to colder surfaces – such as windows. This moisture can encourage mould and mites, which can trigger allergic conditions, such as eczema, conjunctivitis, rhinitis and even asthma.
“Positive Input Ventilation systems are proven to be quiet, energy efficient and shown to significantly improve indoor air quality with incoming air that is controlled and filtered.”
By filtering the air that enters the home, the process can reduce the overall maintenance costs of a property by protecting the fabrics and materials in a home. PIV is also a known method that can help reduce high levels of Radon gas within homes in affected areas.
Positive Input Ventilation is ideally suited to repairs and maintenance, yet is also gaining popularity in new build homes. So, if you are dealing with steaming windows, mould, radon gas or just considering all ventilation strategies, don’t forget about PIV.
For more information about PIV, and products visit our Condensation pages.