Along with efficient air conditioning, proper ventilation is the key to staying comfortable in the Coastal Bend area’s humid climate. Ordinarily, just opening your doors to go in and out provides enough fresh air. In winter, however, we tend to keep the doors open only briefly, so taking steps to improve ventilation becomes even more important.
Seal air leaks — Cracks and gaps around your doors, windows, plumbing entrances, and other points let in outdoor air. While that may sound helpful, consider that outdoor air is laden with humidity, allergens, and pollutants. You’re better off sealing your home’s air leaks with caulk or weatherstripping and using exhaust fans and other systems for proper ventilation.
Control your ventilation — To avoid accidentally overusing your exhaust fans, install programmable timers that switch the fans off after a specified time or at a specified humidity level.
Upgrade your spot ventilation — Many kitchens are equipped with inefficient recirculating range hoods that merely filter air then release it back into the room. For cleaner air in your kitchen, consider installing a ducted range hood that will direct moist air and cooking odors outdoors.
Check your fan sizes — Undersized fans can’t draw out air fast enough to provide proper ventilation. You’ll end up having to leave a window open, which wastes conditioned air and compromises your indoor air quality. Oversized fans increase your indoor humidity level. For a bathroom of 100 square feet or less, a fan with one cubic foot per minute (CFM) of capacity per square foot of bathroom space is enough. For a kitchen exhaust fan, multiply the square footage by two to get the CFM rate you’ll need.
Consider a whole-house dehumidifier — Installed in your home’s heating and cooling system, a whole-house dehumidifier automatically removes excess moisture from the air in every room of your house. Combined dehumidification, ventilation, and filtration systems are available to improve your comfort while giving you cleaner indoor air.
Wherever you are in the Coastal Bend area, contact CCAC, Inc. for professional guidance on efficient ways to boost your home’s air quality.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Corpus Christi, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about ventilation and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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