You should always ventilate your home.
In the UK, we’ve spent years making our homes more airtight – blocking off chimneys, filling in air bricks, and installing insulation.
It’s a great way to help keep the thermostat turned down in the winter months and lower our spending on heating, but airtight buildings aren’t necessarily healthy places to be.
#FreshAirFeeling is a campaign to help homeowners, residents and their families understand why ventilation is so important for our health.
Our short film explains the main reasons why you should always ventilate your home:
What Happens Without Ventilation?
Without adequate ventilation, buildings have poor indoor air quality.
Rooms become stuffy, filled with gases, humidity and other air pollutants, which can lead to condensation, mould, overheating, discomfort and even breathing issues. Our homes generate many air pollutants, from:
- People and pets
- Moisture from showering or bathing
- Cleaning products
- Volatile organic compound (VOC) gases from furniture
- Naturally occurring gases such as radon
Without adequate ventilation, these air pollutants build up in the air in your home.
Simple Steps To Good Ventilation At Home
We all love a breath of fresh air, but lots of properties do not have adequate ventilation to ensure fresh air inside our homes. There are some very simple steps you can take to reduce the level of air pollutants and keep your property #FeelingFresh!
- Make use of extraction fans whilst cooking and showering
- Regularly open your windows and doors
- Dry laundry outdoors whenever possible
If you don’t have adequate ventilation at home, you may want to consider installing new windows featuring trickle vents or explore the possibility of having a mechanical or whole-house ventilation system fitted.
Ventilation Methods Explained
Rapid ventilation, also known as purge ventilation, methods are actions we can all take to get rid of stale air and replace it with clean, fresh air from outside – it’s achieved by opening your windows or doors.
Extraction fans are present in rooms that tend to have lots of moisture or water vapour, such as bathrooms and kitchens. Always use them during and after cooking, showering and washing. This way you can avoid moisture build-up, which can lead to condensation.
It is vital to have background ventilation methods in homes to avoid the build-up of excess moisture and air pollutants. Background ventilation uses vents, specifically designed to offer controllable ventilation through a building. This can be achieved with:
- Trickle ventilators on windows
- Passive wall ventilation
- Positive input ventilation
- Mechanical heat recovery ventilation
Download our ventilation guide for more details on background ventilation.
The Ventilation Regulations
The issue of ventilation has been brought into the spotlight since the new Approved Document F regulations came into force on 15 June 2022.
The statutory guidance from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) explains that a well-ventilated property must have methods of: extracting water vapour and pollutants, supplying a minimum level of outdoor air for occupants’ health (a minimum rate of 0.3 litres per second per m2 of internal floor area), quickly diluting indoor air pollutants and water vapour and minimising the entry of external air pollutants.
The document also lays out the numerous methods of achieving this level of ventilation, including the installation of windows with trickle vents, ensuring extraction systems are installed in kitchens and bathrooms, and the implementation of mechanical or whole-house ventilation systems.
Extra Ventilation Information
If you need further information or advice on improvements that help to ventilate your home, download our quick guide to ventilation.