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How to Improve the Air Circulation in Your Home

by Lauren Busser The House Designers’ Editorial Director

Nowadays, many homes are designed to be energy efficient and well insulated. That is good for your heating and cooling bills but not necessarily good for your home’s indoor air quality. In order to keep your home's air from becoming stagnant there needs to be some exchange of indoor air for outdoor air and that’s where your home’s ventilation system comes in.

Ventilation systems help circulate the air in and out of your home, and, importantly, also make sure that air keeps moving through different areas inside your home. There are many ways to improve your home’s air circulation from the simple solutions like opening doors and windows, to installing a whole-house system in your attic. Here are some ways to help keep your home comfortable and healthy and still energy efficient.

Wood-Ultrex Casement and Awning Windows from Marvin® Windows and Doors are a great way to increase your home’s air circulation. Use its roto-gear operation to open and let a cool breeze through your home.

Integrity from Marvin Windows and Doors Wood-Ultrex Casement and Awning Windows

Open Your Windows

It seems like a simple solution and may be counterintuitive, but it is still a great way to improve the indoor air quality of your home. Granted, you want to make sure that you keep out pests but opening the windows to your home on a day with a gentle breeze does wonders to bring fresh outside air into your home. Opening the interior doors can help create the effect of a cross breeze throughout the entire home if you open multiple windows.

Utilize Your HVAC System

Your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system is one of the easiest ways to increase your home’s air circulation. If you don’t need to heat or cool your home you can set the system to the “fan only” option. This option will move the interior air and pass it through your filter system to cleanse it before it reenters the living spaces.

This cozy living room from LAMPS PLUS® features beautiful contemporary details, including the Artemis Distressed Koa Finish Ceiling Fan. With contoured, aerodynamic vanes with infinitely variable pitch, this fan will help improve air circulation and give your living space a fresh look.

LAMPS PLUS Cozy Living Room

Install Ceiling Fans

Attractive and functional, ceiling fans ensure that air continues to circulate well. You can even run these in conjunction with your HVAC units to help the air circulate better from higher to lower zones and reach the rest of your home.

Use Exhaust Fans

Ventilation is especially important in the kitchen and the bathroom. Exhaust fans work in a similar way to how you might use a window fan but in reverse. Instead of blowing air inward they draw damp air and moisture outdoors. This helps ensure that humidity doesn’t take over the home and removes contaminants from the air.

Exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen are a must, particularly over the stove. Try best® for a wide variety of range hoods that operate efficiently and add an element of style to your home. Pictured here is Surf from the Sorpresa Collection. Its elegant stainless steel design masquerades as a sculptural element.

best Surf Range Hood

Attic Vents and Fans

You can’t forget your attic when you think of your home’s air circulation. Lack of attic ventilation causes stagnant air to become trapped, penetrating the attic floor and affecting the entire house.

A whole house ventilation system is ideal for improving your indoor air quality. Attic fans draw out the indoor air and replace it with fresh air from outside. Fans aren’t your only option for attic ventilation. If your home doesn’t already have one, you may want to consider installing a ridge vent. Installation of a ridge vent is best left to the professionals but you can also install a gable vent in your attic by cutting a frame according to the manufacturer’s directions and mounting the vent with the brackets provided. The attic vent will also help improve circulation in the attic.

Fypon® Louvers and Gable Vents are designed to be beautiful architectural details and are available in decorative and functional models. The functioning louvers and gable vents feature angled slats that protect your home from the elements. Inside you will find a corrosion-resistant screen that keeps insects out and still lets air pass through.

Fypon Louvers and Gable Vents

Humidifiers and Dehumidifiers

If humidity, of a lack of humidity is an issue with your home’s air quality, then you might want to consider a humidifier or dehumidifier. These systems also have air filters and fans that aid in air circulation.

Making an effort to improve your home’s air circulation will make a big difference in your family’s comfort and health. Keeping pollutants out of your home will make the air you breathe healthier and fresher and you can rest easier knowing that the air in your home is continuously being renewed and refreshed.

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