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All information on installing a controlled mechanical ventilation system. Types, design, price and options to improve indoor air quality.
Acontrolled ventilation systemit allows toventilatethe interiors of a home or a room without the need to open the windows. These systems aim to offer air changes, counteract indoor pollution and reduce energy losses so as not to tire the heating or cooling systems.
Controlled mechanical ventilation system
Theoperationof a controlled mechanical ventilation system is easy to understand: the air is drawn from the internal rooms through special pipes installed on the wall or ceiling. The air (aspirated in a forced way) must be passed through the "controlled mechanical ventilation”(VMC) and can suffer different fates according to the installed system.
Mechanical ventilation with heat recovery
In a ventilation system with heat recovery, the "VMC" unit has an ad hoc system: how does theheat recovery from the ventilation system?The heat is removed from the hot air by means of one heat exchanger which then transfers this thermal energy subtracted "from the internal stale air" to the new air taken from outside the building.
In the mechanical ventilation system with heat recovery there is a heat exchanger that subtracts thermal energy from the stale air exiting the building to transfer it to the clean air drawn from the outside.
Most of the unitsVMC hasspecific filtersthat improve air quality and lower indoor pollution. In this way, the air that is introduced inside the house first passes through the filters and then enters the house.
Types of forced mechanical ventilation
As stated, there are different types offorced mechanical ventilation. We have:
- Centralized or collective ducted mechanical ventilation system
It is generally used in condominiums, large offices and building structures composed of different real estate units. It consists of a VMC system capable of serving the various real estate units. It has a centralized, single system and several vents for the extraction of air located in the various units.
- Decentralized mechanical ventilation system
In this context, the VMC system must be installed in every single room of an apartment.
- Independent or individual controlled ventilation system
In this case, the system meets the needs of each room within a real estate context. The single housing unit has a VMC that is able to satisfy different needs according to the rooms.
Themechanical ventilation systemsthey are increasingly used in new homes. Often, in existing buildings they can be installed to eliminate problems related to condensation, humidity or to reach new energy standards.
Thecontrolled ventilation systemsthey can be sized according to the surfaces to be treated therefore, before installation it is important to perform a careful analysis and design.
In addition to the types of systems described above (decentralized, individual, channeled ...) there are also variations on the type of process. We thus have one:
- Single flow mechanical ventilation
A single VMC unit takes care of introducing and extracting air from the room.
- Mechanical ventilation with alternating flow
The flow of extracted air is alternated with cycles at intervals of time (generally every 70 seconds) with flows of injected air. Then for 70 seconds the VMC unit extracts stale air and takes it to the outside and, for a subsequent period of time, introduces "new" air inside.
- Double flow mechanical ventilation with heat recovery
As explained in the introduction, this dual flow system recovers the thermal energy invested to heat or cool the environment. The system manages the introduction and return of air in the various rooms.
How much does a controlled mechanical ventilation system cost?
When it comes to forced ventilation, a lot depends on the type of system chosen. The choice influences not only the Unit to be purchased but also the installation costs (masonry works, fittings ...). Then the cost is also linked to the power and the surface to be treated, as well as the functions of the chosen system (heat recovery, air filtering, double flow ...). The expense, to add acontrolled ventilation systemin the design phase of a building it is around 5,000 - 7,500 euros. Costs increase if the system is to be built in a pre-existing apartment: a false ceiling must be created to mask the air ducts. The price indicated is indicative only and refers to the purchase and installation of a system useful for themechanical ventilationof an apartment of 100 square meters.