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In winter, we find ourselves spending more time indoors, seeking warmth and comfort. However, it may surprise you to know that indoor air can be up to 50% more polluted than the air outside (Smart Vent, 2019). This fact highlights the importance of the air quality within our homes, as it significantly impacts our health. To combat this issue and enhance indoor air quality during the winter months, effective home ventilation systems offer a solution.

The Impact of Air Quality on Health:

Indoor air quality tends to fly under the radar when it comes to its influence on our health and overall well-being. Yet, home ventilation warrants much more attention with winter posing challenges to a home’s indoor air health. Even in Auckland’s relatively warmer climate, the season often brings dampness and cold, resulting in houses that are cold, damp, and unhealthy. Shockingly, statistics indicate that 45% of New Zealand homes harbor significant mold growth within (The Auckland Region Public Health Service, 2018). Everyday activities such as showers, gas heating, cooking, and even breathing contribute to moisture and dampness, with condensation serving as a visible sign of indoor air imbalance (Smart Vent, 2019).

"45 per cent of all New Zealand homes have significant mould inside"

The Auckland Region Public Health Service(2018)

Enhancing Air Quality with Home Ventilation Systems:

It’s worth noting that home ventilation systems do not replace proper insulation and heating methods, but they play a pivotal role alongside these elements in ensuring a comfortable and healthy indoor environment. These systems act as powerful allies in improving air quality, maintaining warmth, and combating dampness.

How does it work?

Home ventilation systems come in two primary types, each with its own unique way of ensuring your indoor air stays fresh and healthy:

Positive Pressure Ventilation: This is the most common system used in New Zealand. It operates by using fans to force air from your roof space or outside through filters. This fresher, filtered air is then pumped through vents in your ceiling and the stale, moisture-ridden air in your house is pushed out through gaps in your property.

Balanced Pressure Ventilation: Here, two fans work in tandem. One exhausts old, stale, and polluted air from your house, while the other draws in fresh air from outside. This fresh air is also directed through ceiling vents. Balanced pressure ventilation systems even have the capability to heat some of the exhaust air in a heat transfer unit.

The Synergy of Home Ventilation, Insulation, and Heating:

While insulation and heating lay the foundation for a cozy home, the synergy of these elements with a well-designed home ventilation system produces remarkable results. As insulation and heating keep the cold at bay, proper ventilation ensures the exchange of fresh air and the removal of stagnant, moisture-laden air. This joint approach transforms houses into spaces that are not only warm but also free from dampness and pollutants.

"Our homes can be 50 times more polluted than outside"

Smart Vent(2019)

Helpful tips to keep your home healthy this winter:

  • Open your windows daily for a short period
  • Make sure to open curtains in the day time and close before it gets dark
  • Keep the bathroom window closed when you are having a shower (confusing I know) but make sure to use a bathroom fan
  • Try not to dry clothes indoors (if you have to – run a dehumidifier)
  • Avoid using unflued indoor gas heaters
  • Remove existing mould
  • Put lids on pans whilst cooking
  • Use your extraction hood when cooking
  • Use your heat pump correctly – read our blog post here to find out how (click the link)

Contact Coastal Connections

In winter the significance of a well-ventilated home becomes evident. The air we breathe indoors influences our health, and a home ventilation system is an instrumental tool in maintaining air quality. Explore our home ventilation services or contact a member of our team about how a ventilation system can improve the air quality in your home.


Auckland Region Public Health Service , 2018. [Online]
Available at: http://www.arphs.health.nz/public-health-topics/healthy-environments/housing/
[Accessed 14th March 2019].

Energywise , 2019. [Online]
Available at: https://www.energywise.govt.nz/at-home/ventilation/home-ventilation-systems/
[Accessed 14th March 2019].

Smart Vent, n.d. Why Ventilate. [Online]
Available at: https://smartvent.co.nz/why-ventilate
[Accessed 14th March 2019].

Kimberly Kelly

Author Kimberly Kelly

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