Over the past few decades, big improvements have been made in the art of draught-proofing. Modern windows are airtight, which is great for energy efficiency. But, unfortunately, while we don’t want draughts to get into our home, an entirely air-tight interior is bad for moisture and air quality. To maintain a healthy and comfortable living environment, it is essential that your home is well ventilated. For this reason, window manufacturers fit Trickle Vents in the frames of their windows.
WHAT ARE TRICKLE VENTS?
Trickle vents are small openings in a window. These openings allow a small amount of air to pass from one side of the window to the other, enabling you to benefit from the fresh air without having to open your window or door. Trickle Vents have the following advantages:
- They remove stale air from your property. And also help to remove any unwanted smells caused by irritants or cooking.
- Help to keep your home safe and secure. A window can be an easy point of entry for an opportunist burglar. But controllable Trickle Vents give you the opportunity to ventilate your home whilst keeping your windows in a locked and closed position.
- There is likely to be a reduction in condensation and mould, which could reduce damage to your decor and reduce potential health problems for asthma and allergy sufferers.
- If you live in a noisier location, near a busy road, airport or industrial site, Trickle Vents allow to ventilate your home without opening the windows, this can reduce the impact of noise.
DO I HAVE TO HAVE TRICKLE VENTS?
The short answer is – it depends. Trickle Vents are a requirement under building regulations. The Building Regulations Requirement F1 – Means of ventilation require that ‘there shall be adequate means for ventilation provided for people in the building’.
When assessing a property for replacement windows the following should be considered regarding the use of trickle ventilators and other forms of ventilation within replacement windows:
- Trickle ventilators are not mandatory unless the existing windows have them, however, it is always a good practice to consider their use when replacing windows.
- Replacement ventilators must be no smaller in geometric open area than the existing ventilators. If the geometric area is not known: habitable rooms should have a minimum of 5000 mm2 equivalent area, wet rooms should have a minimum of 2500 mm2 equivalent area
- Although not mandatory, increasing ventilation by the provision of new or additional ventilators to maintain good air quality should be considered between the supplier and the customer (ref: GGF publication ‘Advice to consumers regarding ventilation when replacing windows‘).
- Two-stage locking handles are an acceptable form of trickle ventilation, where security is not compromised, and draughts will not create a problem. This would usually mean not on the ground floor.
If the window being removed did not have trickle vents fitted, it is recommended to provide the background ventilation in the replacement window, due to the health benefits. And if you already have a problem with condensation in colder weather, or the air in any rooms – fitting new windows without suitable ventilation may make the problem worse
WHAT ARE THE ALTERNATIVES TO TRICKLE VENTS?
There’s a very simple alternative to Trickle Vents – opening a window. It’s a good idea to open all the windows in the house for a few minutes every day (yes – even in winter!) to allow moist air to escape, and dry air to replace it. This is especially important in the bathroom and kitchen.
CAN I FIT TRICKLE VENTS INTO MY EXISTING WINDOW?
If you’ve got a problem with condensation in an older window, it is sometimes possible to install a trickle vent. But do not forget that fitting a Trickle Vent takes considerable time and skill. In many cases, the best solution would be to get the window replaced.
If you would like to get a free no obligation quote, simply call our team of experts on 01322 332237 or send us an email by filling the contact form with your requirements.
Source – Blog Post from ranebrook.co.uk