4/15/2015

Zehnder ERV Chosen to Reduce Allergy and Asthma Issues for the Kuentz Family

When the Kuentz family found out that they were transferring from Fort Worth to St. Louis, they made it a priority to build a healthy home for their family.  Their middle child has both asthma and allergies so they wanted to build a home that would not aggravate his symptoms and at the same time be healthy for the whole family.  The goal was to build a home that has good indoor air quality and incorporates materials with low or zero VOCs.

The Kuentz Family’s High-Performance Home

The high-performance five-bedroom, 3,700 square-foot home was completed in February in partnership with Hibbs Homes, Verdatek Solutions, Curtiss W. Byrne Architect, and the High-Performance Buildings Research Center (part of the Midwest Energy Efficiency Research Consortium at the University of Missouri-Columbia).  In conjunction with using building material that would not aggregate the son’s symptoms, the ventilation strategy is key to the ongoing air quality and comfort of the home.  The home incorporates a Zehnder ComfoAir 550 energy recovery ventilator (ERV) to provide a continuous supply of fresh filtered air for the occupants.  Simultaneously, the ERV works to extract moist, stale air from wet rooms (kitchens, bathroom and utility rooms).  It’s almost impossible to have no pollutants or contaminants in a building, so the ERV with the constant fresh-filtered air helps dilute the concentration of unavoidable pollutants to a comfortable level.

The ERV provide fresh air to the home without opening windows.  Although natural unfiltered window ventilation is an option, there are shortfalls especially for someone with allergy and respiratory sensitivities. The ERV filters the intake air coming into the entire home before distributing it.  This will help relieve asthma and allergy systems of the occupants.  The filters will effectively remove many common allergies including pollen, dust and pet hair.  The ERV filters are easy to access for replacing periodically.

An ERV system allows for better control of the air in the home through mechanical ventilation.  Relying on a natural or an exhaust-only ventilation strategy limits the control you have on where the supply air is entering the building. Often it comes from less than optimal sources such as cracks and opening under floors, between insulated walls and attics.  The Zehnder ERV helps the Kuentz family control the fresh filtered air in the home for their son and the health of the whole family.

For additional information on this project, you can learn more from the following links:

http://www.proudgreenhome.com/news/how-the-proud-green-home-at-st-louis-got-its-start/

http://www.proudgreenhome.com/blogs/ventilation-strategy-at-proud-green-home-of-st-louis-is-key-to-increased-air-quality-comfort-and-durability/

http://www.proudgreenhome.com/videos/zehnder-erv-makes-life-more-comfortable-in-the-proud-green-home-of-st-louis/