Ventilation & Air Quality
Many people associate the term sustainable construction with the sustainable natural resources used in the actual building process. While this is an important part of the green building initiative, it is also important to remember that you need to build in such a way that you minimise the need for additional products, like mechanical ventilation systems. You should strive to build in an ecologically sound way that ensures maximum natural airflow and that improves the air quality in your home.
When you have natural ventilation as a result of careful planning and design, you can reduce the amount of electricity required to heat and cool your home; you can also improve your health and the health of your entire family. Clean air is healthy air.
Ventilation the Easy Way
The simplest thing you can do to ensure that you have natural airflow in your home, apart from proper design, is opening the windows and doors of your house for ventilation. This natural ventilation is perfect for ridding your home of air that has been circulating and gathering moisture and pollutants. It will ensure that fresh air has a chance to flood your home and regulate temperature.
Some Measures you Can Take
Some additional tools or measures that you can take to remove moisture from your home (helps to reduce mould growth) and extract any pollutants and the air that carries them are listed below.
Air Escape hatches include ducted stove hoods, fireplaces, and flued gas heaters.
Use an extractor fan in bathrooms, washrooms, and small rooms that do not have ventilation.
You can use heat recovery ventilation systems or a heat pump with an air filter to clean the air and improve airflow and quality.
Use windows that have security or double-tongued latches, and leave them open whenever possible.
Avoid smoking or using incense sticks in the rooms without good ventilation.
Ceilings & Solar Powered Heat Extractors
Many people underestimate the cooling power of ceilings in the home. Having good ceilings with enough space for heat to rise and become trapped is a great way to reduce the heat levels of your home. The problem is that extracting the heat can become an issue during the warmer months.
An easy fix for this problem is to install a heat extractor on your roof that is powered by solar electricity. After installing the extracting fans, simply turn it on to remove all the heat from the ceiling and consequently, the house. Using solar powered extractors can save you a lot of money each month on your electric bills. You can also opt to use the non-electric powered extractors, which work when there is breeze or enough hot air in the home that it forces its way out. The only problem with these systems is that they do not always run when you need them to.
Improving Air Quality with Sustainable Building Materials
When you construct your home, you need to consider the raw materials that you will be using because they can have an effect on the air quality of your home. It is important to choose paints, stains, and solvents that are non-toxic or have very low toxicity. It is important to use tools and products that have low VOC assembly and low chemical emissions rates.
It is also important to use natural and sustainable building materials that are locally sourced, are resistant to moisture, and can remove moisture from the air. One of the best natural resources for this is sheep’s wool insulation or cotton insulation because they will actually absorb the moisture in the air and keep your house mould free.