Preview: Maximizing Indoor Air Quality


Maximizing Indoor Air Quality

TD’s Fall issue will introduce insights into customizing and maximizing indoor air quality.

By Steve Panosian

iPad and home ventilation diagram

WHETHER BUILDING A NEW HOME or renovating, understanding indoor air quality may perhaps introduce the greatest opportunity we have to help contribute to improving the environment while having a better home. The adage, “killing two birds with one stone” comes to mind, as building a home with healthier air quality is an integral step towards impacting the overall environment in a positive way.

The article will provide a glimpse into the realities brought on by a most revealing lifestyle paradigm shift that has been coined the “Indoor Generation.” Staggering is the percentage of time spent indoors that directly impacts mood, productivity and overall well-being. This statistic plus studies on the typical home’s air composition serve as a foundational argument for gaining awareness on this subject for personal and professional reasons. The key is to get ahead of the planning process and what best serves your client’s lifestyle and needs.

TD raises the question about how a customized system can offer personalization given the attributes that make up a healthy home environment. The article will discuss the benefits of the Passive Home design and whole-home air purification. Design-build teams must carefully consider airtight construction and indoor air quality that defines how a home’s air is managed. While air quality issues and energy efficiency are tied together and need to be simultaneously addressed, it shouldn’t necessarily mean that zero energy performance reduces the need for an operator.

Air purification systems are not based on just one device, regardless of the heating and cooling requirements of a home. To achieve the benefits of a passive home and manage a healthy home environment, a whole-home system will likely be comprised of many different components and depend on the spec of a home and its geographic location. The system design will need to factor and address everything about processing fresh air in the home.

We see the expertise of technology designers extending to include the custom management over a whole home air purification solution for an entire home, zones and specific room preferences that is controlled through one system. There are many moving parts in the typical automated home control solution today that includes security, monitoring, HVAC, lighting, A/V, blinds and many IoT devices throughout the home. Adding environment monitoring and control under one control system is the challenge. We know the days of fumbling with multiple remote controllers are gone and the maze of smart phones with an “app for that” doesn’t address simplicity for the clients and their fast pace lifestyles that demand that technology works for them and not against them.