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Advices for HRV new installation

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 7th, 2019 8:03 am
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 29, 2019
46 posts
1 upvote
Lower Laurentians

Advices for HRV new installation

Hi guys!

We recently bought a house in Lower Laurentians, Quebec and we are doing some renovation before moving it.

The house is a 1974 detached bungalow with basement and main floor (both 40' x 24'). It has a kitchen, a living room, a bathroom and 3 bedrooms upstairs. The basement is not completed yet, but it will have 1 bathroom, 1 bedroom and a big open space / living room. Following the advices from Rénoclimat program (kind of energy efficiency consultants) we will install a HRV (standalone, no a central heat pump). For the size of the house they didn’t recommend a central heat pump.

We have some questions regarding the HRV:

1. Is it worthy to connect the bathroom exhaust to the HRV (and install a timer)? Or is better to leave the bathroom with its own exhaust (that will eliminate the moisture quicker since is very close to the outside)?

2. Should we install a vent to the HRV in every room? Our HRV contractor has said that with just a vent in the main floor and another in the basement should be enough, but we are thinking maybe we’ll regret it in the future if we don’t install one in every room.

3. The specific HRV model we are going to install is this: Venmar C12 HRV. Is it good?

We have asked all these questions to our general contractor and HRV contractor and their answer are basically “is up to you”, so any help would be really appreciated!

Thanks!!
14 replies
Deal Addict
Feb 11, 2018
1677 posts
1346 upvotes
I doubt a house built in 1974 is airtight. Therefore I wouldn't bother installing a HRV. But that's just me.
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[OP]
Newbie
Oct 29, 2019
46 posts
1 upvote
Lower Laurentians
I forgot to mention we are redoing completely the basement and we'll insulate it with urethane. In 2 or 3 years we'll change the insulation upstairs since we want to update the exterior siding too. Windows are already "new" (3-5 years old, all Energy Star). That should create a fairly airtight place. We just want to install the HRV now that the basement is completely open, so it will be easier to install the vents.
Deal Addict
Feb 11, 2018
1677 posts
1346 upvotes
You might want to check the basement for radon before...
All the women I have loved have made my life more complete.
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 29, 2019
46 posts
1 upvote
Lower Laurentians
We haven't test the radon levels on the basement, but if they were high, I understand what we plan to do (HRV + new insulation) would solve any potential radon problem, right?
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 29, 2019
46 posts
1 upvote
Lower Laurentians
Just a small bump to see if anyone can help me with my original questions!
Jr. Member
Sep 29, 2011
158 posts
112 upvotes
Quebec
I would suggest to install vent-in in each bedroom.
you spend 6-7h there each day, often with the door closed so better to have fresh air!

most of the homes I know have a vent-out in the bathroom(s) connected to the HRV; works fine at my place (and yes with a timer right in the bathroom to start it before the shower)
having a vent-out in the kitchen can also be great if your bathroom is far from it.
Sr. Member
Aug 25, 2009
545 posts
106 upvotes
Deadmaggot wrote: We haven't test the radon levels on the basement, but if they were high, I understand what we plan to do (HRV + new insulation) would solve any potential radon problem, right?
We have a 2001 home in the lower laurentians too and replaced the windows recently, it seems very airtight now. We also installed an HRV a few years ago, and I measured radon levels with the HRV running, they did not decrease. I asked the radon mitigation installator and he said they're never fully pressure balanced so the house is almost always in negative pressure still (sucking in air from under the basement) and new air doesn't make up for it. Anyway we went from ~200-400 levels to < 5 with an active radon mitigation system, running HRV or not.
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 29, 2019
46 posts
1 upvote
Lower Laurentians
I see, thanks for the info, very appreciated!

Can I ask you how much did you pay for your active radon mitigation system? Was it worthy?
Deal Expert
User avatar
Dec 26, 2005
16942 posts
1787 upvotes
Thornhill
RadonAway RP145 off Amazon was about $200 (sale). $50 for pipes.

Took 3h to install.

bjl
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Sr. Member
Aug 25, 2009
545 posts
106 upvotes
Deadmaggot wrote: I see, thanks for the info, very appreciated!

Can I ask you how much did you pay for your active radon mitigation system? Was it worthy?
I paid 2K$ (discount for students coming in my house), but usually it's 3K$. They actually had to drill multiple places in the basement since the pressure readings were not right. On the side of the house the foundation had a > 1 inch gap and the fan was sucking too much outside air in. They ended up installing the fan in the middle of the basement. Personally I would not have tackled this myself, too involved for me and I do not have any of the tools.

Very worth it, peace of mind since my daughters will have their rooms downstairs eventually

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