Maximizing Comfort and Efficiency: When to Use Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs)

Dec 27, 2023 | H.E. Rieckelman

Maintaining a comfortable and energy-efficient indoor environment is a priority for both homeowners and businesses alike. Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs) have emerged as invaluable tools in achieving these goals. In this blog post, we’ll explore the key scenarios and benefits that make ERVs a smart choice for improving indoor air quality, reducing energy costs, and contributing to a sustainable future.


Balancing Humidity Levels:

One of the primary functions of ERVs is to control humidity levels within a space. In regions with extreme climates, whether it’s hot and humid or cold and dry, ERVs play a crucial role in removing excess moisture during the cooling season and retaining moisture during the heating season. This not only enhances the comfort of occupants but also helps to prevent issues such as mold growth and material degradation.

Energy and Cost Savings:

ERVs are designed to recover the energy from the exhaust air and transfer it to the incoming fresh air. In the winter, the heat from the warm indoor air is transferred to the cold incoming air, and vice versa in the summer. This process significantly reduces the load on heating and cooling systems, leading to substantial energy savings and lower utility bills. By leveraging ERVs, you can enjoy a comfortable indoor environment without compromising on cost-effectiveness.

Reducing the Load on Make-Up Air Units:

In buildings where a make-up air unit is used to provide a constant supply of fresh air, ERVs can complement these systems by pre-conditioning the incoming air. This collaboration helps make-up air units operate more efficiently, as they don’t have to work as hard to heat or cool the incoming air. As a result, the overall HVAC system operates with increased efficiency, leading to extended equipment life and reduced maintenance costs.

Electrification Over Gas:

With the growing emphasis on sustainability and the shift towards electrification, ERVs offer an eco-friendly alternative to traditional ventilation systems that rely on gas. By using electricity to power ERVs, you contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, aligning with broader efforts to decarbonize spaces and promote environmentally conscious practices.

Decarbonizing Your Space:

ERVs are integral components in the broader strategy of decarbonizing buildings. As we transition to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources, ERVs play a crucial role in reducing the carbon footprint associated with heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Incorporating ERVs into your space not only aligns with environmental goals but also positions you as a leader in adopting innovative and responsible building practices.


Understanding when to turn on your Energy Recovery Ventilator is key to unlocking its full potential. Whether you’re hosting a gathering, have a sick member in the home, or simply want to optimize energy efficiency, ERVs offer a versatile and effective solution. By incorporating these considerations into your usage patterns, you can create a healthier, more comfortable, and environmentally friendly indoor environment for both short-term events and long-term sustainability goals.

By: Nash Mohammad | B.Eng