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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
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    • CommentAuthorandyman99
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014
     
    As I improve air tightness in the house I’m starting to see more humidity problems (which is perversely quite satisfying). There have always been some issues but they are starting to get noticeably worse. I’d love to put in a whole house system, but retrofitting the ducting is I think a step too far both from disturbance and cost issues.

    My initial concern is the main bedroom which sits above a double garage. I have been squeegeeing the windows most of the winter and I’m starting to get fed up with the early morning ritual and also concerned at potential problems due to the high humidity. My thought is to install a single room unit in the ensuite and hope that this will also reduce humidity in the bedroom. Some of the threads I have read appear to suggest that this might happen and I wonder if anyone who has installed one could comment? The bedroom is of course a far bigger area than the ensuite, but since I hate noise at night I don’t think I could put up with a unit in the bedroom.

    I don’t understand how the in and out air is separated, but was wondering if creating an additional air path between the rooms would help? Assume door to ensuite open when not in use then would a “return path” from the bedroom via additional ducting help. This would be easy to do without any major disturbance as shower backs on to bedroom cupboard and holes could easily be created.

    Should I be looking for an unbalance system to force more air movement? The 2 rooms are as far as I know devoid of major leaks but I don’t know how air-tight they really are yet.

    Andy
    • CommentAuthorjamesingram
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014 edited
     
    hi , I use a http://www.vent-axia.com/range/hr100rrs.html to extract from bathroom and input to 2 beds , it's undersized and we still get condensation on windows (old 2G so weak spot) but has solved wall condensation and mould. Might suit for your purpose, 66m3/hour on boost . Pipes all run in loft so simple to install and low noise.
    I'm about to swap it out for a larger unit and will ebay it.
  1.  
    Any ensuite fan should reduce condensation by getting rid of moist air at source , problem might well be warm moist air heading to colder bedroom and ensuite fan not able to deal with volume. fitting something similar to above will help reverse this air flow to bedroom to ensuite.
    • CommentAuthordaserra
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014
     
    Maybe one with a humidistat also, so as not to waste too much warmth.
    • CommentAuthorandyman99
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014
     
    Thanks for advice. If I go for something like this do I need to worry about building control/regs? Clearly its not a whole house solution. I agree with the humidity control activation, but would also like to prevent it going into boost mode at night.
    • CommentAuthorBeau
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014
     
    It' not cheap but this looks like a great piece of kit http://www.viking-house.co.uk/fine-wire-hrv.html
    • CommentAuthorandyman99
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2014
     
    Yes I did see this, but couldn't actually see a price? Does it fit into the outside wall?
  2.  
    about a grand and yes.
  3.  
    If i get round to switching it you can have my HR100 for £50 :bigsmile:
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2014
     
    Delivered, I will have two please James :bigsmile:
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2014
     
    Posted By: andyman99I agree with the humidity control activation, but would also like to prevent it going into boost mode at night.


    Humidistat control is the only way to go. Tbh, your major sources of moisture are going to be showers and cooking, so unless you're doing either of those at night you shouldn't have to worry about it running too much in the wee hours.

    Where you might get problems is in spring/autumn, when it's chilly but reasonably damp outside. In these conditions you can get stuck with a unit permanently in boost, as the outside air it's bringing in isn't dry enough to cope. Your options there are to either adjust the humidistat upwards or just switch the thing off.
  4.  
    Posted By: BeauIt' not cheap but this looks like a great piece of kithttp://www.viking-house.co.uk/fine-wire-hrv.html" rel="nofollow" >http://www.viking-house.co.uk/fine-wire-hrv.html


    It's not cheap :-), unless you compare it to about 4 single room heat recovery fans at several hundred each. I asked the other day. However, you only have to wire in one unit.

    It fits into an outside wall.

    Have to admit that I had the impression that it fitted into the side of a window opening, but I was wrong. It will go straight into a wall.

    For the app on this thread I would consider a quiet trickle+boost Humidistat-controlled Heat Recovery Fan in the ensuite and 10mm off the bottom of the door as a first step, which should cost you about 10 watts. In my experience that should be OK to sleep with.

    The spec of the HR100 is not much more throughput than a through the wall unit. Save the aggro of a more complex install?

    F
    • CommentAuthorGreenPaddy
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2014
     
    andyman99, if you need fresh air then you should of course be removing the stale air, and if you do that, there's a very good arguement to take the heat energy from that stale air as you bring in fresh air. Obvious so far. The thing is, it doesn't really make sense to remove all the air repeatedly, and replace it with new air, just to get rid of the moisture in that air (and as it reabsobrs more moisture from wet walls etc).
    It's regularly talked about on this forum, so surprised no one else chipped in (or maybe I missed it?) but a dehumifier could be a much better option for you. It can then be run in which ever room is either creating the moisture (bathrooms/kitchen more so), or where the condesation is forming, which again could be various rooms.
    I have one myself for clothes drying (another use for yours should you get one), and have a number of clients who rave about theirs since I recommended it for their cond'n problems. Of all the recommendations I make to clients, this has the biggest effect for the least cost. You might consider this one ....Ebac Amazon15...about £160 from "appliancesdirect" - best price I found.
  5.  
    got Humidistat setup with my HR100 but had to run it through a relay to get dual switching working. Generally on boost most the time as Ferd. mentioned but mainly due to general high internal humidity rather than incoming air , as input ducts in other rooms 7m away. My problem is highish CO2 readings throughout the house so hopefully bigger unit will sort that
  6.  
    greenpaddy, got a ebac power dry rigged up to solar Pv dump in my place but still struggle with heavy condensation on 2G windows on north side. Just to many people living and breathing in a small volume me thinks. Could always just open some windows a bit more !
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2014
     
    Posted By: GreenPaddy
    It's regularly talked about on this forum, so surprised no one else chipped in (or maybe I missed it?) but a dehumifier could be a much better option for you. It can then be run in which ever room is either creating the moisture (bathrooms/kitchen more so), or where the condesation is forming, which again could be various rooms.


    Be careful with this. If you house is underventilated using a dehumidifier could just mask the problem. You could still have high CO2 levels in the house which will cause headaches and fatigue. This is a risk if you've increased the air tightness of your place, and you're now not getting enough fresh air in.

    I think they're fine for dealing with point sources of moisture (eg: washing hung up inside) but I wouldn't use one to deal with a general condensation problem. Better to ventilate.
    • CommentAuthorandyman99
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2014
     
    Well we do have a de-humidifier (Ruby Dry) which, when it is used, is for drying clothes in a small utility room. I have tried this in the bedroom and it does help, but it uses around 350 watts on its medium setting. I suppose it does give off some heat too, but since it needs to be run for 2 to 3 hours to have a noticeable effect I’m reluctant to see it as a permanent solution?

    TBH I am not too worried about the ensuite itself, we are mostly just 2 in the house and we will open the window for a bit after the shower to help the fan extract. When it is just us we are quite careful with anything that generates humidity as we have had to replace quite a few curtains over the years. Likewise air quality seems mostly OK and we can leave the bedroom door open unless we have visitors or returning oiks.

    As the room is above a double garage it is quiet large and does tend to cool down overnight. Typically it will be 14/15 degrees in the morning even with the hole plugging and insulation that I’ve done, so possibly that is part of the problem. If outside temperature is below 4/5 degrees then the condensation is more than just misting (which I can live with.)

    I can see the FiWi might work well downstairs as this is quite open-plan, but not where it would go upstairs such that it would work everywhere. But it does sound a great solution, can you just knock out some bricks and put it in, or do you need some sort of support?

    Anyone know when building inspectors get interested? Presumably a simple through the wall bathroom unit is of no concern, but a whole house system might be.

    A simple ensuite unit would be the easiest, but if it doesn’t sort the bedroom, then its wasted money. A bigger ducted unit would have more chance of working, more cost but greater flexibility in trying different arrangements. Hmmm I need a 3 sided coin.
  7.  
    Fitted, vent axia tempra ( a little noisey) and HR25 (better) in kitchen and bathrooms as single room units.
    Both seem to work well re. condensation/odours, though cant vouch for ROI in energy terms. Other post installation problems have been suddenly going on to boost in the middle of the night and waking the occupants up.
    From an unscientific point of view, input/output seems all a bit too close together for me.
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 30th 2014 edited
     
    Posted By: jamesingram
    From an unscientific point of view, input/output seems all a bit too close together for me.


    Yep, a fundamental limitation of the through-wall units. I'd imagine the location in the room would affect performance quite a bit. I've got one mounted in the corner of my bathroom, but it's the only place I could put it. Can't imagine the air mixes very smoothly, but it does the job.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeOct 25th 2019 edited
     
    Posted By: jamesingramhi , I use ahttp://www.vent-axia.com/range/hr100rrs.html" rel="nofollow" >http://www.vent-axia.com/range/hr100rrs.htmlto extract from bathroom and input to 2 beds , it's undersized and we still get condensation on windows (old 2G so weak spot) but has solved wall condensation and mould. Might suit for your purpose, 66m3/hour on boost . Pipes all run in loft so simple to install and low noise.
    I'm about to swap it out for a larger unit and will ebay it.




    Resurrecting this old thread;-
    Jim, you seemed slightly dissatisfied with the HR100R, did you eventually exchange it? If so what did you replace it with ?
    I've been looking at the HR100R at about £190 plus extra for ducting and control etc. The larger 150mm duct model HR200V is over £500 for the unit.
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