Government urged to act on air quality

Heat recovery and ventilation

Titon is backing the Ventilation and Indoor Air Quality (VIAQ) Task Group’s call for concerted Government-led action on ensuring good performance of mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR) systems.
The Task Group’s report, which was authored by the National Home Building Council (NHBC), highlighted concerns over indoor air quality in new homes, and demonstrated a link between poor indoor air quality and health issues, specifically related to design and installation standards for MVHR.
Commenting on the findings, Tyson Anderson, Sales and Marketing Director at Titon, said:
“As a manufacturer of MVHR systems, we strongly support the findings of the VIAQ Task Group’s report – and give our full backing to Government-led action to ensure better air quality and ventilation in people’s homes.
“From our perspective, it is a major concern that the benefits of MVHR are being wasted due to inept installations. There needs to be a protocol in place that monitors and improves both the design and installation standards of MVHR systems.”
Task Group members also called on the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) to consider mandatory competency requirements for MVHR installations so that standards can be driven up.
“We have already called for a Competent Persons Scheme (CPS) in domestic ventilation to be put into place, which provides a viable method of policing installations. Such a scheme will enable ventilation projects to be monitored and regulated thoroughly, putting the sector on par with other areas of the building services industry. Plus, it would eliminate poor quality workmanship and actually make those at fault accountable for their actions.
“If the ventilation sector is to provide effective systems to the end user, then ensuring installer competency is vital. While we already run the BPEC course, this pales into insignificance when compared to other, CPS-supported sectors.
“The concept of ventilation may not be as high profile as gas or electricity, but is no less important. Once a MVHR system has been fitted, consumers don’t have a specific, government endorsed organisation they can turn to in the event of a problem, or if they need some informed advice. Our industry needs to continue to push for additional support to enable the benefits of ventilation systems to be more widely recognised.”
Poor air quality is connected with a range of undesirable health effects, including allergies and asthma symptoms. The VIAQ Task Group findings reinforce the need for the design, construction and commissioning of buildings to be undertaken with internal air quality and the provision of adequate ventilation firmly in mind.