I pointed out last week how it seems really likely that Elon Musk’s family home has an MVHR system. This makes sense, given how interested he is in technology, energy efficiency and health. MVHR systems are the only intelligent way to maintain healthy levels of air quality in a modern energy efficient home.
So it’s crazy that one of the wealthiest celebrities in the world is spending millions of pounds renovating a trio of barns that will feature the most basic and cheapest ventilation system you can buy: bathroom and kitchen extractor fans.
As the Daily Mail article states: “It is proposed that two metal flues be added to the west range to serve a new fireplace and kitchen extract”.
System 1 ventilation in a £6m renovation is such a con. System 4 MVHR ventilation would cost them about £12,000 ex VAT for a property this size, including design, install and commissioning.
That’s 0.2% of the total budget to secure a super-healthy, super-comfortable internal home environment.
Builders love kitchen and extractor fans because they’re really cheap to fit and they pass Building Regulations (the worst quality home you can build in the UK). But they don’t give you enough ventilation to keep internal air healthy (a target 30m3 of air per hour per person). They don’t pre-warm the fresh air and they don’t run silently like MVHRs do.
It’s such a shame that in this hugely expensive renovation led by some very clever professional services firms, in a project where I’m sure every individual piece will be aligned to the nearest half-millimetre, such an obvious and important aspect of health and comfort has been completely missed by the architects.
Such a missed opportunity. Just ask Kevin McCloud of Grand Designs.