Positive Input Ventilation (PIV) system is increasingly popular in the UK, where condensation and damp problems are prevalent during the winter months. A PIV unit is a major step up from a dehumidifier and at a lower cost than heat recovery systems. A Positive Input Ventilation System unit will normally resolve damp, condensation, and mold issues in a matter of days, considered to be a whole house – damp, mold, and condensation solution and permanently operating 24 hours a day at very low running costs.
A PIV home ventilation system will supply clean, dry air that dilutes and forces out excess moisture, leaving an environment that is clean, dry, cheap to heat, and hard for household pests like dust mites and mold to survive, thanks to much lower humidity levels.
An area often overlooked in the struggle against condensation and mold is air quality. One aspect that has made a Positive Input Ventilation System system an increasingly popular next step up after a dehumidifier is the air filtration capabilities of the unit.
Breathe cleaner, fresher and healthier air – Considering the number of hours per day people spend in their house, most people overlook the air that they breathe in the home, but the installation of a PIV system will mean that the air you breathe will have been fully replaced by the PIV unit up to 20 times per day!
High-quality and very low-maintenance filters ensure that pollen, traffic fumes, odors, mold spores, dust, and dust mites will be removed from the air before you breathe it. This will be a major boost for any allergy sufferers and can lead to significant health improvements.
How a PIV System Works
A PIV system draws in warm air from a ventilated loft, attic, or exterior vent grill. It then passes the air through filters before very gently pushing the air into your home through a vent in the ceiling, normally in a hallway or landing. This creates a silent un-noticeable positive indoor air pressure that pushes out old stale air and smells. This will leave a healthy fresh environment for you to breathe. This same positive air pressure also helps to stop cold draughts by pushing the cold, damp, or stale air out through any gaps or cracks.
A typical installation of a PIV ventilation system – Situated in the crawl space of an attic, fresh air from the outside is drawn in through natural ventilation, a roof vent, or an exterior wall grill. Filtered, fresh, or gently heated air can then be blown into your home. A fantastic Idea even for those without mold problems or condensation.
Positive Input Ventilation Running Costs
Running 24 hours a day and seven days a week, the average 6-watt power consumption of a PIV system will not leave a hole in your pocket. Most good PIV units will cost less than $20 a Year to run.
Dry air in the home is also easier to heat, meaning lower fuel bills. Solar energy collectors are now also available as add-ons to further cut your heating bills during the winter months. This will contribute considerably more energy to the home than it consumes and could save up to 10% on a family’s heating bills per year.
PIV Systems for Allergy Sufferers and Asthma
As already touched on earlier, for those who suffer from respiratory problems, asthma, or hay fever, these symptoms can be made worse by exhaust fumes, dust allergy, mold spores, dust mite feces, and pollen. In tests completed by some local governments, residents who suffered breathing difficulty all had significant improvements after installing PIV units.
Allergy control – As high as 80% of Asthma attacks, according to some research, may be directly related to dust mites, and up to 50% of cases can be eased significantly by better air quality inside the home.
Installing a Positive Input Ventilation System
It is quite easy for someone with reasonable DIY skills to fit their own PIV unit. PIV unit kits can also be purchased that cater to this end of the market. Fitting your own PIV system will save you about 50 to 75%.
Obviously, an electrical connection will have to be made, and you may be well advised to employ a qualified electrician to finish the final step for you. Installing faulty wiring can and probably will invalidate your home insurance in the event of an accident or fire.
Generally, people do not have problems with the trickle of fresh cool air blown into a home by a PIV system, but if you think you would like the option of warming the air first, there are many units now available with a super economical built in the heating system if you require one.
PIV System vs Heat Recovery
A PIV unit does compare to a heat recovery system in some areas. Both filter and clean air of contaminants and reduce humidity in the home leading to a cure for excess humidity, mold, condensation, and dampness.
Both are also whole-house solutions, but a PIV system will not recycle heat inside the home in the same manner and so cannot be thought of as contributing to home heating in the same way. PIV units are, however, very effective and within the realms of self-fitting for a handyman.
PIV System vs Dehumidifier
A PIV system is a whole-home solution and filters the air of contaminants. A dehumidifier is portable but localizes humidity reduction more than PIV. This can lead to a dehumidifier struggling if it’s in a large house.
Positive Input Ventilation System is also cheaper to run but not portable, and obviously, a dehumidifier requires no fitting or installation.