Recently it was reported in the news media that a home in Gore suffered fire damage as a result of the ventilation system installed in the ceiling space. The ventilation system was a traditional 240 volt ducted system typical of hundreds of thousands fitted in homes around the world. The unsubstantiated reports indicate the temperature control system was set too high which resulted in the 240v fan burning out and starting the fire.
While this does not indicate that positive pressure ventilation systems are necessarily dangerous, it does highlight the need to ensure the cut-off controls are set at correct levels and that all systems fitted conform to the NZ electrical standards. These standards include 240 volt fans, controls and wiring.
At Unovent we are particularly conscious of ensuring that our products are safe and cannot cause unexpected problems. Apart from NOT having ducting throughout the ceiling space, our DIY Unovent systems are all safe 12 volt. This does not carry the inherent risk associated with 240 volt which require more stringent regulatory standards and professional installation. Our control units are pre-set at the factory to automatically switch off at a predetermined safe temperature which ensures there is no risk of the system overheating – and does not bring heated air into the home during hot summer weather as experienced recently.
Of greater concern are the 22 fires nationally caused by heat transfer systems. These are the subject of a prohibition notice by government agency Energy Safety and recall by the manufacturer. Read more on the heat transfer system recall here.
Heat transfer systems are often confused as positive pressure ventilation systems. The difference is heat transfer systems move warm air around the home, typically from a well heated lounge with a solid fuel fire to the colder bedrooms. They do so by blowing air through ducting in the ceiling. Positive pressure ventilation systems transfer fresh air from the roof spaces into rooms throughout the home to provide ventilation. All, except Unovent use large expensive 240 volt fans and ducting. Unovents are 12 volt fan units fitted in each room as required.
If you have concerns or would like to discuss these issues please give us a call at 09 950 4436 or 0800 548 035.