As a homeowner you’ll know that living in a damp home can be uncomfortable and frustrating to deal with. With dampness being a common problem in our homes, many homeowners are opting to install a ventilation system in New Zealand.

If you’ve been exploring your options for creating a drier home with a ventilation system, you’ve probably heard about the different types available: positive pressure systems and balanced pressure systems. To learn a little more about how your home can be ventilated, we’ve highlighted what you need to know about these two systems and taken a deeper look into the most common ventilation system available in New Zealand: the positive pressure system. This is also the type of ventilation system we offer at HRV.

Please note that an HRV ventilation system may not be right for all homes. Book a Free Home Assessment to find out if it’s right for you.

How Positive Pressure Ventilation Works 

The positive pressure home ventilation system is the most common one available in New Zealand and it works to create a drier home environment for you and your family. Positive pressure systems achieve this by drawing the dry — and often warm — air from your home’s roof cavity, taking it through a filter (such as HRV’s Nanofibre filtration technology) and distributing it throughout your house via a fan and a series of ducts.

Because the fan is pushing newly filtered, dry air to the far corners of your home, the movement created means old, stale air is forced out of your home to make space for the fresh stuff. This cycle then repeats itself, much like your lungs do for your own body. The cycle of replacing stagnant air with fresh air happens up to three times per hour and results in a home that stays drier, with dampness held at bay.

Positive vs. Balanced Pressure 

While a positive pressure system takes the dry air from your roof space, pushes it out into your home via ducts and filters, and forces the stagnant air out, there’s also the balanced pressure ventilation system. This system is similar to the positive pressure system but uses two fans in its process.

In a balanced pressure ventilation system one fan is used to supply fresh, outdoor air into your home via ceiling vents. Meanwhile the second fan (known as the exhaust fan) works in tandem to take an equal amount of stale air from inside your home and expel it outside. A balanced pressure ventilation system also retains some of the heat from the air being expelled and transfers it to the fresh air through a heat exchange unit, which is usually installed in your home’s roof space.

HRV’s core ventilation systems are designed as positive pressure systems, with the additional choice to install a heat transfer system alongside it. This kit works to warm your home, keeping the temperature balanced throughout, the perfect complement to a ventilation system.

HRV’s range of positive pressure home ventilation systems start from $3,129 (including installation) and can be customised to best suit your home, location and household needs.

Benefits of an HRV Ventilation System 

With an HRV ventilation system in place you’ll be creating an atmosphere that’s more comfortable for your family to live in. There are numerous upsides to installing this system and it’s not just that you won’t have to open doors and windows in the middle of winter to ventilate your house.

The biggest benefit that your HRV ventilation system will give you is a dry home – so long as your roof cavity is nice and dry with no moisture issues. And with your home kept drier thanks to the system, it means it’s more efficient to heat. This is because your heating system isn’t battling to dry out dampness as well as warm a room, instead your home can heat up in a more efficient fashion.

Anyone who has lived in a damp house will know the annoyance of wiping down windows with condensation morning after morning. And unfortunately, even adding double glazing sometimes isn’t enough to keep this issue at bay in some parts of the country. However, thanks to the movement caused by HRV’s ventilation system, the moist, warm air that causes condensation is forced out of your home before it has a chance to leave liquid on windows. Now that’s one task we’re thankful to wipe from our daily to-do list!

Condensation On Window

The reality of living in a damp house is exposure to a wet, moist atmosphere that isn’t enjoyable to be in. With an HRV system, the air you and your family breathe is first filtered through our NZ-designed and manufactured Nanofibre filter. As an add-on, your home ventilation system can also be fitted with SETA Diffuser Filters for an extra layer of filtration. These filters attach directly to your system’s diffusers and can capture some microscopic particles before the air enters your home.

In a home fitted with a ventilation system, you’re living in a space that’s easier to keep dry which greatly reduces the threat of things like mould and mildew. By ensuring your home is warm and dry, mould will find it far more difficult to thrive, giving you one less thing to worry about.

For many of us, living in a damp house has been a bleak reality. A damp home can make the home environment uncomfortable, and drying off windows and sills, cleaning mould and trying to keep walls dry can be  incredibly hard to keep on top of. A home ventilation system may relieve you of these annoying tasks and allows you and your family to simply enjoy the comfort of your home. To find out if your home is suitable – book a Free Home Assessment today.

Installing a Positive Pressure System 

Not only will a home ventilation system take the burden of manual ventilation off your hands, HRV will also take care of installing the whole unit as well. Our team are experts when it comes to installation and take a number of factors into consideration before anything gets started.

Ahead of set up, our professional installers assess things in your home and property that will be important to take into account. This includes your home’s layout and location, any environmental factors to be aware of, and your interior design preferences. With your home’s unique elements in mind, the team will be able to configure the setup to best suit your family.

It might be tempting to try and hook up the positive pressure system yourself, but because installation requires an electrician we highly recommend letting our professionals take care of it for you.

To find out if your home is suitable – book a Free Home Assessment today.

When an HRV system might not be right for your home
Every home is different and in some circumstances an HRV ventilation system might not be right for you. Here are some examples:

– If your house doesn’t have a roof cavity

– If the roof cavity is not accessible

– If your home experiences excess moisture in the roof cavity or sub-floor

– If there are holes in the roof or ceiling

– If existing extraction fans or rangehoods are vented into the roof cavity

HRV’s Ventilation Range 

Our core ventilation system is a clear favourite and installed in more kiwi homes than any other. Part of what makes HRV’s range such an easy choice for New Zealanders is the various add-on options we offer. In a country with such a diverse climate and a vast range of housing types, we know that different areas of the country require different heating and cooling solutions and we happily to cater to them all.

The SummerKit add-on is a great solution to bring cool air into your home. Instead of your ventilation system taking air from your roof cavity — which is warmer than the rest of your home — during the hot months, the HRV SummerKit brings cool air from the southern side of your home. Installed with ducts under the southern-facing eave, this add-on bypasses the roof space to take the cool air from outside — increasing your hours of ventilation in the process.

Our Heat Transfer Kit can be installed onto the core ventilation system with ease to help maintain a even temperature throughout all areas of your home. The Heat Transfer System takes some of the excess heat generated by sources like your fireplace and transfers it to other areas of your home through a system of insulated ducts. This is the perfect solution to warm the southern side of your home, or houses with cooler back bedrooms.

If you’re worried about dampness in your home or apartment, but don’t have the roof space for a ventilation system to be fitted in, our Sonair ventilation system might be for you. This through-the-wall system can be installed into selected rooms of your home where there is excess moisture, such as the laundry or bathrooms. The Sonair is a great option for single rooms and can be easily retrofitted into existing homes. Although it’s not a whole home solution like the full home ventilation system, the Sonair system will reduce moisture and dampness, as well as pull fresh, filtered air into the room it’s installed in.

Ready to start reducing dampness in your home and begin increasing your comfort? Book in for a free home ventilation assessment today.