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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Chicagoland
    Posts
    69
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    old house ventilation

    Looking for solutions for an air pressure problem in a 100 year old two story Victorian house, with a basement, and crawl space, located in northern Illinois.

    Two furnaces with a/c serve the house. Both in the basement. One serves the original house, including all of the 2nd floor, the other serves a one story addition and parts of the original first floor. Total square footage is close to 2500.

    All ducting is in the original basement, the crawl of the addition, and walls of conditioned space.

    There are no returns on the 2nd floor where there are three bedrooms and a full bath.

    The original foundation is hollow block, and the addition is poured concrete.

    The original block’s mortar is missing in many locations, and the soil pollution, and moisture infiltration has got to be, at some level, harmful.

    As building science is concerned, what can be done to make the house a healthier place?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Chicagoland
    Posts
    69
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    Thread Starter
    Installing returns to the 2nd floor would help, but that is a tough sell. To introduce fresh air to the basement is an easier solution. Would an hrv offer enough controlled fresh air, and make-up air, to give the house the balance, or maintain a small positive pressure, to replace what is being lost?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    9,386
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    HRV/ERVs will not change the pressure in the home because they exhaust as much as the introduce. During cold weather, the pressure is negative on the low levels and positive on the high levels. This called stack effect,not a problem. During cold temperatures, the air change is high and no benefit from any kind of mechanical fresh air ventilation. Possible to need fresh make-up fresh air during the warm part of the seasons when the windows are closed and air change rates are low.
    keep us posted on any questions.
    Regards Teddy Bear
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

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