Many residents set their thermostats in their house without even a thought to the overall conditions in a room that need to be controlled to maximize comfort; it is just something that is not talked about or discussed that much. Temperature is just one factor that needs to be controlled but your HVAC controls are capable of determining other considerations in room comfort too. Temperature, humidity, proper ventilation and inside air pressure all combine to make your home environment as comfortable as possible. Lets look at each of these environmental comfort factors and the roles they each play in home comfort.
The 4 Environmental Comfort Factors In Your Home
Here are 4 things that you can adjust in your home by using your HVAC Controls:
1. Temperature this is the most basic and most familiar of all the things that you can control with your central air system. If you are feeling a little chilly you can go over to your HVAC controls and simply raise the temperature a little bit; the heat will then come on and you should feel better as the room warms up.
2. Humidity this is simply the presence of water vapor in the air that surrounds you in your home. It is measured in terms of what is known as relative humidity (RH) and it definitely can affect human comfort levels; you have probably experienced how much it can affect you if you have ever been outside on a day that is described by the weather person as being hot and humid. The air seems thick, heavy and uncomfortable on these types of days. Desirable RH for people is said to be ideal at 25 45% RH in the winter months and below 60% RH in the summer time.
3. Ventilation this is the amount of air flow that moves through a room. It is essential to comfort to ensure that there is not too much CO2 in a room and everyone has enough oxygen. The general rule in a living space is to have 20 Cubic Feet per minute of air flow per occupant.
4. Air Pressure its no secret that air seeks to move form high pressure areas to lower pressure ones from both in and outside your home. Proper HVAC setup tries to maintain a positive air pressure inside the home to help reduce outside air infiltration and make the other 3 comfort factors more stable.
Why do you need to control all 4 of these things?
The answer to that is simple if you take a minute to think about it. For example, you set your thermostat to heat up your room or home to 25 degrees Celsius; that is usually a fairly comfortable temperature but that may not be the case if the humidity in your home is very high. Another example is if your room air pressure is good but the air is not moving through it enough, then you might fatigue from exercise faster or get tired easily doing things that normally wouldnt affect you.
So as you can see, all these 4 environmental comfort factors need to be able to be addressed by both the HVAC system design in your home and also by adjusting the HVAC controls on that system too.
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