What is sub-floor ventilation and why is it so important?
The purpose of a sub-floor ventilation system for your home is to extract the damp humid air and to displace it with fresh air from and into the sub-floor area. The same principle also applies to heat. Powered roof ventilation systems extract the hot air while allowing cooler air to enter the roof space. These different forms of ventilation create a healthy home environment by preventing the build up of moisture, gases, pet dander, mould and any other undesirable odours that may be present.
2012 has proven to be a wet year with torrential rain causing floods throughout eastern Australia. A majority of sub-floor ventilation installations are conducted in coastal areas but are now equally valid in western Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. The excessive moisture experienced by these homes gives way to a variety of problems including residual damp in sub-floor regions which promote the growth of mould. If not treated, mould can lead to structural damage to your home, or worse, health concerns for you and your family.
Damp sub-floors can be tackled with the following applied to your dwelling:
Surface moisture around your home is a direct result of rain and its run off. Typically, surface moisture is controlled by stormwater drainage systems, rainwater tanks (with overflows to stormwater), spoon or dish drains, and/or subsoil drainage also known as ‘aggie’ drains.
There is a misconception that a spoon drain can be installed by simply digging a small depression in the ground and that this will be adequate. A spoon or dish drain must be constructed of concrete or of an approved polymer product. This acts to channel water away from your home. If a proper spoon drain is not established, the surface water is absorbed into the ground and creates subterranean moisture build-up around and under your home. While an approved dish or spoon drain will work as the first line of defence for your home, it will not divert a hundred per cent of all surface moisture. The second line of defence is typically a subsoil drainage system. This is normally laid at the base of a trench with the dish or spoon drain on top. This becomes a two pronged control for surface moisture.
Sub-floor ventilation is essential as your last line of defence outside your home. Any residual moisture or humidity under your home can easily be swept up by an Envirofan sub-floor ventilation solution.
Passive vents are better than no ventilation at all however they are only as good as the wind blowing through them. Naturally, the wind is not always forthcoming particularly around sheltered dwellings (such as homes in the cities). Couple your passive ventilation with an Envirofan fan-forced ventilation system to literally extract any humidity from the sub-floor area of your home.
A humid sub-floor area is a haven for termites. This is outlined in ‘Termite Inspection Report’ in accordance with AS 3660. Extract the humidity beneath your home and create a dry environment to deter termites.
My sub-floor is safe, but what about indoor air quality?
Profound in environmentally conscious homes, Envirofan fan-forced ventilation is the ultimate compliment to indoor air-quality. Eliminate risks of allergies, asthma, toxic reactions or any other respiratory ailments. Pet fur, pollen, dust, mould spores, tobacco smoke, household chemicals odours, pesticides, paint fumes and solvents are only some of the common air pollutants. These can become concentrated in energy efficient rated homes as air-tight seals are implemented on windows and external door jambs for security. In this situation, air-borne nasties are easily trapped. Carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide or soot from a fuel burning appliance or heating system can also become a problem without a proper home ventilation system.
Envirofan fan-forced sub-floor ventilation is the ideal solution to maintain a happy, healthy home! Remember, if it isn’t Envirofan, it isn’t one!