Ventilating a Lockwood Home

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Ventilating a Lockwood Home

Lockwood homes are well made, are very air tight, look good in pine and many have beautiful cathedral ceilings in the lounge. All these great attributes make for a wonderful home that is easy to heat, but again, like all homes, will over time, become damper and more costly to heat. I’ve recently ventilated two lovely Lockwood homes and the clients are very happy.

Lockwood #1:

This home has 4 bedrooms (one with walk in wardrobe) a combined lounge and dining area both with pitched wooden ceilings, a family room and office. This home had quite bad condensation in three bedrooms and the office (mould had to be cleaned off the walls in the bedrooms at least once a month in winter) and a dehumidifier running in the master bedroom. The house is heated with a heat pump (in the lounge) which seams to be oversized, but as the owners said the heat pump guy sized it that way as it was needed to be able to heat the rest of the home, but it has never been able to, just like the wood fire before it, it can not heat down the passage. The lounge dining area does not seem to get condensation unless it gets really cold as it faces north and the heat pump is run most of the winter.

We installed an 8 outlet ventilation system, 1 outlet in each of the 4 bedrooms, 1 in the walk in wardrobe 1 each in the family room and office with the eighth into the lounge dining room area. Also included was a heat transfer system to take the excess heat from the lounge down to the 4 bedrooms.

This family is very happy, not only has the condensation stopped in all the rooms, the clothing in the wardrobe always feels dry and fresh to put on, with no musty smells, no mould to clean off the walls, the beds no longer need electric blankets and finally the heat from the lounge travels around the home to where it is needed. The home feels much better to be in and one thing that I was not told originally was that the children continually woke up with runny noses the lady of the home is quite surprised that the kids seem to be healthier more alert (possibly more awake) and no runny noses.

Lockwood # 2:

This home is long and narrow, like many New Zealand homes, the lounge kitchen dining room at one end and has a raked cathedral ceiling over this half of the home, 3 bedrooms, a bathroom and laundry all with a ceiling cavity above in the rest of the home.

The home has bad damage to the wooden window sills, this, as the owners agree has been caused by condensation, (they use 3 towels to wipe the windows and sills on bad days) including the lounge even after the wood fire was used the night before.

This family has have lived in this home for 8 years now and intend to stay there for at least another 10 years, so they want to make it comfortable. Because of this, they are wanting to make their home more efficient, easier to look after and working on saving energy costs, they are consciously going through their home room by room and finding ways to reduce ongoing costs.

The things they have decided on – before I got there – include no longer using electric blankets, turning off electric heaters in bedrooms (unless they were working or studying in that room), they have bought heavy thermal curtains – to keep the heat in – even considered installing double glazing but felt that the cost out weighed the advantages, including loosing heat gain from the sun in winter (a new home would definatly have Double Glazing). They also realised that it was not the windows causing the condensation (it’s the excess moisture in the home) and they wanted to also stop the mould on walls.

They have investigated which is the most cost effective ways of heating both the home and the hot water, either by solar energy or a heat pump, in doing this they learnt just how much energy is [link] collected by their roof and how warm and dry the roof cavity is (something they had earlier never thought of) which is what led them to ringing us.

They have now done some home work on the problems in their home and have realised much of it is caused by the home becoming damper by the year – they had wondered why their power bill was going up faster than the relative increase in the cost of power – the home was only 2 years old when they bought it and was relatively dry, last year the home was hot and sticky in the height of summer and the bedrooms were very cold in the winter.

We installed a 4 vent home ventilation system sized to their home (3 months ago), along with the heat transfer option to bring heat from the lounge – a wood fire at present, possibly heat pump in the future – to the bedrooms.

They now find the home comfortable when they get home at the end of the day, have not had any condensation and only used the wood fire once this year (it’s mid may). They have found the beds more comfortable to be in, warmer to get into and they say they have been sleeping better. Even though the curtains were only one month old when the ventilation system was installed they no longer feel cold and there is no moisture at the bottom of the curtains.

Again the key is to keep the home dry on an ongoing basis, so we can be efficient and cost effective in saving energy whenever we can. If we do this well, initially we will save on power bills and our time but ultimately save on home maintenance costs, as there will be less condensation, which will in turn give us no mould and no damage caused by condensation to our home, along with giving our families a healthier place to live.

If you want the benefits of a quiet, well designed ventilation system for your home contact me here.

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