A Response from Titon to the NHBC’s Guide to Overheating - September 2012

The recently published report by the NHBC Foundation entitled ‘Understanding overheating – where to start’, identified a number of factors which are responsible for rises in indoor temperature, leading to overheating inside new build homes. As a result, Titon thinks the case for whole house mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR) is now stronger than ever before.

In order to maintain the necessary levels of air tightness yet retain heat, new build properties have highly efficient double glazing and copious amounts of insulation installed in order to comply with Part L of The Building Regulations. While this is all well and good when the temperature outside is low, it can result in overheating during the summer months, as identified in the NHBC report.

To help reduce these overheating issues, whole house MVHR should be deployed in order to manage indoor temperatures and keep them at a comfortable level. For example, Titon’s own HRV Q Plus range features the latest features, including a ‘Summer Mode’ (which turns off the supply air on demand or via a remote thermostat) and/or ‘SUMMERboost®’ (increasing both the supply and extract to full speed)  to help reduce susceptibility to overheating in dwellings during the warmer months of the year. These settings assist in keeping internal temperatures under, what is considered to be, the ‘danger’ level of 35°C outlined in the NHBC report.

Utilising MVHR also provides continuous indoor air movement – the lack of which is identified in the NHBC report as a contributing factor to overheating and the residents’ discomfort – resulting in a healthier indoor environment. Preventing ‘stale’ air from lingering also has added health benefits for occupants, as it reduces condensation and mould growth.

There needs to be an equal balance in keeping homes warm during the winter months and cool during the summertime; it is only by utilising MVHR that homeowners will be able to benefit from the best of both worlds.