4/25/2014

What is an Energy Recovery Ventilator?

Today’s building requirements demand improved energy efficiency and air quality standards for residential and commercial HVAC systems. In addition, as new buildings become more airtight, there is an increased demand for contractors, engineers and system integrators to improve the performance of mechanical ventilation systems.

How Energy Recovery Ventilators Work

An Energy Recovery Ventilator, also known as an Enthalpy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) is an essential component in an HVAC system as it improves indoor air quality by bringing in the fresh air, reduces energy consumption and allows smaller heating and air conditioning systems to be installed.

Energy Recovery Ventilators reduce the load and energy consumption on a building’s HVAC system by recapturing the energy of the indoor space. Instead of releasing building energy to the outside, it is transferred across the membrane in the Zehnder ERV exchanger to pre-heat or pre-cool and humidify or dehumidify the incoming air.

The primary difference between a standard Zehnder heat exchanger and a Zehnder Enthalpy exchanger is that the Zehnder Enthalpy exchanger can transfer humidity from one airstream to the other. The Zehnder Enthalpy exchanger transfers the humidity as water vapor by diffusion from the high to the low partial vapor pressure side.  Simultaneously, it prevents cross-over of gases, odors, and contaminants.  The pores are just large enough for a small water vapor molecule to fit through but too small for larger air constituents or VOC molecules to fit through.

The Zehnder Enthalpy exchanger recovers the energy (thermal and latent) from the outgoing stale exhaust airstream, which would normally be lost, and transfers the energy back into the incoming fresh airstream while preventing the cross-over of the exhaust contaminants.

Retention of value:

For homeowners, a Zehnder ERV system is an investment that pays off. Mildew formation caused by a lack of ventilation is prevented by reducing excessive humidity. Zehnder ERV systems make a vital contribution to retaining and increasing the value of your property.