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HRV & ERV: What's the Difference?

installing an air filter

Older homes used to be full of air and moisture leaks when they were built. In many cases, this was to allow fresh air to continually circulate throughout the home and keep the climate reasonable. However, modern day homes are built to be as energy-efficient as possible, which means sealing those leaks to become as air-tight as possible with some form of mechanical ventilation.

There are two types of ventilation systems to choose from: HRV and ERV.

HRV Ventilation Systems

Heat recovery ventilator systems (HRV) function almost exactly as their name says; they recover heat. These systems work great in climates where colder months contain excess humidity since they can eliminate it before bringing it into the home. These systems work by removing stale air from your home and replacing it with fresh air from outside. However, they also use some of the heat from the stale air in your home to warm the fresh air (hence, “recovering” it). This allows your home to remain more efficient by requiring less heating and still keep your air supply fresh.

ERV Ventilation Systems

Energy recovery ventilators (ERV) work great in climates where the outdoor air in colder months is dry and arid but warmer months have high humidity. These systems recover heat, but have a much better efficiency rating due to their ability to recover energy from humidity. These units come with both a heat and a humidity exchanger to allow the moisture in the air to remain in your home during the dry winter months but outside your home during the humid summer months. This allows both your heater and air conditioner to run less often and in shorter cycles which helps you save money.

Do HRV & ERV Systems Increase My Energy Bills?

We hear this question a lot. The whole point of making your home air-tight is to decrease your energy usage, which saves you money, right? But how am I saving money if I have to run yet another appliance? The answer: both HRV and ERV systems are remarkably efficient. Running at a low setting, an HRV system can use as little as 13.5 watts of electricity, about as much as a small compact-fluorescent light bulb. However, they are also amazingly good at what they do: some units are capable of exchanging 85% of the heat between the incoming and outgoing air in order to keep you comfortable.

Experienced Ventilation Installation & Repair

If you would like more information regarding installing an HRV or ERV system in your home, speak with the experts at Burant Heating & Air Conditioning. We offer high-quality services that make your satisfaction our top priority. We have helped thousands of customers over our 15 years in business, and have learned how to not only meet expectations, but exceed them. Our friendly Milwaukee HVAC service experts are all highly-trained in the latest technologies, and we back up all our services and workmanship with some of the best warranties in the industry.

Call Burant Heating & Air Conditioning now to learn more about ventilation systems! Dial (414) 386-3660.

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