Self Build Alliance have constructed many Self Build Homes in the South West UK, particularly in Devon and Somerset. With the design of many buildings now being of timber frame construction that are highly insulated & air tight, many of our clients are now opting for a Mechanical Ventilation System to ensure that air quality within the house is obtained without the heat lost that some inferior designs have. Our Mechanical Ventilation partner CVCDirect have explained this in more detail below:
When building a new house, installing a heat recovery system will indirectly make an important contribution to producing a low energy, eco-friendly building. By insulating to a very high level, it is possible make a significant reduction in the amount of energy required for heating a building. In order to achieve this, the levels of insulation required by Building Regulations should be regarded as a minimum standard and exceeded wherever possible.
The object is to build a warm, snug, airtight dwelling which uses very little energy, rather than finding alternative ways to produce it. (If you can do both, so much the better, but extra insulation would be much cheaper than a ground source heat pump or solar panels, for instance).
Having built an airtight, energy efficient house, it will then be necessary to ventilate it in order to prevent the accumulation of moisture, stale air and unpleasant smells. If ventilation is necessary, then it should be done as efficiently as possible. There is little point in building a highly insulated dwelling and then allowing cold air into it through trickle vents in the windows and extractor fans in bathrooms. (Trickle vents are not required when an HRV system is installed).
The Energy Saving Trust (EST) Code for Sustainable Homes sets standard for the specification of low energy housing, graded from level 1 to level 6. (The aim is to reach level 6 which is Zero Carbon). Heat recovery ventilation will be one of several technologies which contribute to this process, so by fitting a suitable high efficiency system now, you will be future-proofing your new house.
For more information about Home Mechanical Ventilation Systems as part of your Self Build Project get in touch with Paul Brown of Self Build Alliance.