Today, most homes and most buildings are built airtight to enhance energy savings. This results in humidity and stale odor that is polluted. Energy efficiency without stale odor and humidity can be achieved by using a heat recovery ventilator (HRV). This is because HRVs transfer heat from outgoing air to incoming air thus keeping your home warm and cozy.
According to research, 90% of our lives are spent indoors where the air is several times more polluted than outdoor air. With an HRV installed, polluted air is expelled from your home making the air within the house warm and fresh. Deep cleaning the heat recovery ventilator system is necessary to ensure that mold and accumulated dirt in the ventilation do not harm your loved ones.
A heat recovery ventilator system (HRV) is ideal for home use during the winter season. The excess moisture in the home is expelled and warm fresh air is delivered in. Air from outside is heated by the expelled moist stale air but never mixing. However, HRV system ventilators accumulate dust and dirt over time. When mixed, it provides a conducive environment for mildew and mold to develop.
Steps to deep clean a Heat Recovery Ventilator System
As a professional Air exchange cleaning service provider, we have vast experience in the various popular brands available in the market. With expertise in ensuring the air quality for our clients, we also handle your air exchange with the utmost care to ensure longevity.
Every deep cleaning exercise begins with precaution. By turning off and unplugging we carefully examine the external and internal of your HRV. Switching your HRV off during a deep clean is important as it allows our certified service technicians will to clean hard to reach internal units
Filters are removed, cleaned and in some cases replaced. Filter cleaning involves the use of our non-toxic cleaning solution. In some older models, filters are easily replaceable. For damaged or clogged filters, we highly recommend replacing the filters. Due to the role played by filters in ensuring air quality, clean filters guarantee ventilation efficiency.
Clean the outdoor intakes and exhaust hood of your heat recovery ventilator. Leaves, paper or debris are a few of the common items that are normally blocking the outdoor vents. Blocked vents affect the effectiveness of your HRV system. Snow and frost should also be cleared during the winter as they also greatly hamper the efficiency of the HRV system.
Cleaning the outdoor intakes should be done regularly. This is because the air intake fan is constantly pulling in air. This makes the outdoor air intake is a major source for dirt and dust particles in the heat exchange and filters.
Most homeowners contact us when they notice that the air exchange leaking water. Leaking water is mostly a sign of clogged drain tubes.
At the bottom of your HRV, there is a plastic tube or pipe known as the condensate drain. During the deep cleaning process, we use warm water with antiseptic to clean the drain. In homes where HRV cleaning is not done in a regular, the condensate drain is normally dirty and water flow is inhibited by accumulated dirt.
Remove and clean the heat exchanger core. The heat exchange core is an important part of your air exchange system. The heat exchange core should be removed and cleaned. Dirt and dust is then vacuumed and washed off. The amount of dirt relative to the last cleaning date is an ideal measure of your local air quality.
Depending on the amount of debris, insects, and dust in general, you may require to undertake a deep clean twice a year. This is because the heat exchange cores’ performance is affected by the accumulation of waste.
Dirt in the ducts of your HRV is checked and confirmed using a video camera. This helps to determine the amount and nature of dirt present. Deep cleaning your HRV system involves removing the grilles covering duct ends. This enables our technicians to thoroughly vacuum and clean the ductwork leading to and from your HRV.
Accumulated dirt and air pollutants in the ductwork require proper cleaning using specialized equipment. This ensures that mold and mildew do not thrive in your HRV system. It’s worth noting that the grille also requires cleaning as it also accumulates a considerable amount of dirt as well
The fan or precisely the blades of the fan also require to be cleaned. Dust particles from the ducts accumulate on the blades of the fan over time should be brushed off. With the advancement in technology, new HRVs have fans that run continuously without servicing or oiling. If you run an older model in your home, add a few drops of lubricating motor oil in the oil intake. Adding oil will ensure your fan wheels run smoothly with minimal friction thus less wear and tear.
As a final step, our technicians will check your air flow and ensure that your HRV system is balanced for optimum efficiency. When your Heat Recovery Ventilator system is balanced, the ventilation system does not pressurizes or depressurizes the house.
Benefits of deep cleaning a heat recovery ventilator system
Due to global warming, there is an increased demand for households and organizations to be energy efficient. The benefits of deep cleaning your heat recovery systems that recycle the energy in stale air from the house and transfer it to the new, fresh air coming in are numerous:
- Increased Energy efficiency
By filter and duct cleaning, one is able to clear out dirt and debris that reduce the energy efficiency of your HRV. Debris including insects are common and can easily clog your filters. Heat recovery ventilators are basically air exchanges. They take out humid and stale air while warming fresh air. With regular cleaning, one is able to clean the filters and parts of the duct. Deep cleaning your HRV system involves
– core cleaning
– duct cleaning
– vent cleaning and
– filter cleaning
Depending on the make or model of your HRV, we recommend replacing or cleaning your filters regularly. Using our specialized non-toxic cleaners, we clean and vacuum accumulated dirt to significantly improve the efficiency of your HRV. Try us
- Improved air quality
Frost build-up, dirt, leaves and other debris covering your outside vents are known to cause the quality of air delivered by your HRV system. Further cleaning the ducts ensures that the air in your home is fresh.
Wet windows or condensation on windows is a clear indicator of humidity in the home. Using your HRV system, you can ensure your home is warm without compromising the air that you and your family inhale. It will also ensure that rot and mold do not form on walls.
- Reduced risk of parts replacement
Deep cleaning your heat recovery ventilator regularly will help you reduce the risk of part replacement due to breakdown. Dirt wears down the internal units of an HRV. The performance of the fan and movable parts within the air exchange are affected by an accumulation of dirt which may cause costly damages.
Contact us in the case of water leakage. We ensure that the clogged pipe is cleaned to reduce the risk of mold and odor. Unchecked leaking could cause damage to your HRV and home that is expensive to repair.
- Reduced cost of heating
An HRV system in the home helps cut costs of heating during winter. Recovering heat from stale air enables you to spend less on heating of your rooms. During the winter, heating costs increase drastically. An air exchange enables a homeowner to make considerable savings as rooms that need heating are connected and heated.
Although cost cutting is highly advised, it is prudent to avoid using flexible tubes for air vents. Flexible tubes are cheaper and easier to install but result in a noisy HRV system. The ribs also slow down the movement of air, therefore, forcing your HRV to work harder making it less efficient.
- Extend the lifespan of your heat recovery ventilator system
Like all machinery, deep cleaning your HRV system enables you to maintain it for longer. Well-Maintained air exchange can last decades without demanding changes to various parts. During the installation of your HRV, it is wise to use solid ducts. This is because solid ducts are easy to clean and less likely to wear. Flexible tubes are ribbed making them harder to clean and also increase the risk of breakage during the deep cleaning process.
Deep cleaning your heat recovery ventilator system is important in preventing mold, rot, and mildew. It is highly advisable to do so annually and replacement of the filters when needed. For most popular brands, manufacturers’ recommend cleaning the filters at least four times a year. Cleaning of the filters can be frequent depending on the air quality of the locality and the number of insects and debris in your filter and core unit.