Issue # 6: Ventilation & IAQ
ISSN 1703-5597
 January 22, 2003

Contents: Issue # 6:
Ventilation & IAQ

  1. Getting Started: Intro To IAQ, Glossary, Why Ventilate?
  2. Ventilation Codes, Checklist & Simple Guidelines
  3. Common Ventilation System Options
  4. Approved Products, Training Courses & Books
  5. Air Cleaners, Filters & Duct Cleaning
  6. Carbon Monoxide, Air Flows, Energy Costs, Multi-Family
  7. Other Resources: Links, Website, & Conference

1. Getting Started: Intro To IAQ, Glossary, Why Ventilate?

Ventilation is usually installed to provide a solution to indoor air quality (IAQ) problems. Before we get into the ventilation systems here are some information sources to help you better understand IAQ and reasons for proper ventilation.

Introduction To Indoor Air Quality
This brief article gives you an overview of things that cause indoor air problems and some of their health effects. The links on the right hand side will give you even more detailed information on each source of indoor air pollution

Glossary Of IAQ Terms
This site has a quick way to find the meanings of the different IAQ terms. Check out the “Microbial Glossary” link on the left hand side if you want to learn more about some really big words, and maybe even impress your friends or doctor. 

Benefits Of Ventilating
HVI is the Home Ventilating Institute, a North American wide association of home ventilation product manufacturers. Their site has a simple explanation (with drawing) of suggested ventilation options for different parts of a house.

2. Ventilation Codes, Checklist & Simple Guidelines

Trade Association
HVCI, BC’s own HVAC trade association, has played a big role in the development of the “unique to BC” ventilation portion of the BC Building Code. Their site has a number of articles on local issues, solutions, and suggestions. Scroll down to the second section titled “Ventilation”

Ventilation Checklist (PDF FILE)
Having your ventilation contractor complete a detailed Mechanical Ventilation Checklist is one way to help insure proper system design and installation. Here is a sample of the HVCI form from the City of Richmond website.

Bathroom Ventilation Guidelines
These simple guidelines for calculating bathroom ventilation requirements are from HVI in the US. They may not be adequate to meet your local municipality requirements, but they explain things in a short and simple manner.

3. Common Ventilation System Options

System Options For Home Builders
This website from Oikos gives you an excellent overview of the different system options, including some easy-to- understand drawings for each system. 

Bathroom Fan & Range Hood With Outside Air Supply (PDF FILE)
What would we do if we didn’t have something from Dr. Joe Lstiburek in here? This drawing shows a basic bath fan and range hood system that is designed to address the exhaust fans negative pressures by bringing in outdoor air.

Installing A Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV)
HRVs are increasing in popularity for certain types of homes and customers. This article from the Journal of Light Construction gives a good overview (with pictures) of how HRVs work, and an example of how they are installed.

4. Approved Products, Training Courses & Books

HVI Approved Product Directory
Do you want to know if a ventilation product meets certain performance criteria? HVI approves products based on industry testing standards. Here is their product directory. Just click on the link you want and view them for free.

Ventilation Training Courses In BC
HVCI is known for delivering quality training courses and system design materials for local professionals. Here you will find information on their ventilation courses and materials.

Residential Ventilation Booklet: by Richard Kadulskii
This booklet, written with help from David Hill, is an easy read. It Includes info on pollutants, source control, ventilation system design, and codes. Richard is selling these for only $6. Contact him at or phone 604-689-1841

5. Air Cleaners, Filters & Duct Cleaning

Overview Of Air Cleaning Devices & Filters
This American Lung Association site has detailed information on the various residential air cleaning devices, types of filters, and buying recommendations.

Wondering About Duct Cleaning?
Is there anyone in the universe who has not been telemarketed for duct cleaning? This EPA site covers all you need to know about when and how they should be cleaned.

6. Carbon Monoxide, Air Flows, Energy Costs, Multi-Family

Air Tight Houses & Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
CO poisoning causes a number of deaths each year. This Canadian Building Digest report covers possible problems caused by exhaust systems along with suggested solutions.

Testing The Air Flow Of Exhaust Fans
Some of you techies out there might want to go as far as testing the amount of air flow at each ventilation grill. This new exhaust fan flow meter from The Energy Conservatory can do just that, quickly and accurately.

Cost Of Exhaust-only Ventilation
In our colder climates many people have a concern about how much it costs to ventilate. This article from the Oikos site gives an example and a formula for doing your own calculations.

Ventilation Research In Multi-Unit Residential Buildings (PDF FILE)
This cross-Canada research summary from BC’s own Sheltair Group discusses ventilation issues in multi-family buildings and how they relate to possible moisture problems.

7. Other Resources: Links, Website, & Conference

Links To Professional Resources
Green Buildings BC is an initiative to reduce the environmental impact of provincially funded buildings in BC. This section of their site has some good links to professional resources on indoor environmental quality.

International Ventilation News & Research
AIVC is the Air Infiltration & Ventilation Centre. If you are really into infiltration and ventilation and want to keep in touch with international issues and research they offer a free quarterly newsletter.

Upcoming Building Envelope Conference In BC
The 11th Canadian Building Science & Technology Conference takes place in Banff, March 21st 22nd and 23rd, 2007. Targeted to professionals in the building construction industry to present and share ideas on building, renovating and repairing better buildings. The sessions focus on the design and construction of durable building envelope systems.

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