When renovating a building, it can be easy to overlook a very important aspect of proper building maintenance: acquiring proper ventilation for your laundry room. Regardless of whether you consider the laundry room a minor part of your industry, it plays a major role in your safety and energy efficiency. You should take care to ensure that your laundry room has proper ventilation to avoid any potential hazards or unexpected costs.
Reasons for Proper Laundry Room Ventilation
Whether upgrading your laundry room or looking to replace your washer and dryer, ventilation might be one of the last things you are considering. However, improper ventilation in your laundry room can lead to costly damages that require extensive repairs if left unchecked.
Reduced Fire Hazards
Lint can build up in dryers, lint filters and vent pipes. Over time, the piles of lint capture other highly flammable materials that can suddenly combust while the dryer runs. Not only can this fire damage the inside of your dryer, but it can also cause your dryer or the pipes within it to explode, creating an even larger hazard and causing you to incur greater costs.
Lint can also become trapped in tight corners and hard-to-reach areas. Built-up lint can easily make its way back toward a faulty plug or exposed wire where a loose spark can easily ignite it, creating additional risk. Proper ventilation and maintenance reduce the risk of dangerous lint buildup by ensuring it is carried away from sources of heat. It also cleans the air of any lint particulate that might remain from changing lint filters.
Increased Energy Efficiency
Whether through vents or simply an open window, allowing a fresh and cool breeze into your laundry room will help reduce the temperature. A more stable temperature means less wasted energy heating or cooling during extreme temperatures.
Improved Air Quality
The fresh air afforded by a properly ventilated laundry room does more than lower the temperature; it also helps prevent the buildup of moisture. In humid climates especially, proper ventilation can help reduce the amount and rate of growth of harmful or allergy-causing moulds, mildews, and bacteria. In addition to leaving visual splotches and streaks, mildew and mould also create an unpleasant odour, similar to rotten eggs.
Methods of Ventilation
Depending on where your laundry machinery is located, a simple open window may suit your needs. The fresh air does well to lower the temperature, especially in arid places. However, if you have concerns about humidity or your laundry room is located in an area without openable windows, this is not the best option. You can also install fans in your window for extra ventilation.
Exhaust ventilation removes excess heat and moisture from a room by sucking hot air up via fans that can be switched on or off. For optimum laundry room ventilation, exhaust ventilation systems should extend all the way to the outside to ensure the heat leaves completely. Compared to other forms of ventilation, exhaust fans are cheaper to install, but require more regular maintenance. Many exhaust fans come with removable or replaceable filters when they become clogged with dirt and lint.
Vent hoods work similarly to kitchen hoods systems and are also installed above your dryer. When the hood is on, it sucks up and expels hot air via a small fan within the hood system. This method of ventilation tends to be more expensive but works very well to remove excess moisture as well as prevent lint buildup. Their distance away from the dryer means that you have to clean them much less regularly than exhaust fans.
Effective and resilient, vent pipes are a solid choice for ensuring that lint, excess heat, and moisture leave your laundry room efficiently. These pipes attach directly to the dryer, making them more expensive to install, especially if you are also replacing your laundry equipment. Vent pipes also must be cut and fixed to meet specific building code requirements, potentially adding further expenses. However, vent pipes require little maintenance and last a long time, which lessens the impact of its higher upfront costs.
Air ducts are another common option for hauling hot air away and bringing cool air into your laundry room. They work similarly to exhaust vents in that they use fans to suck in hot air to lower the temperature and decrease humidity.
Unlike exhaust, air ducts can be attached to multiple machines at once, making it an affordable and practical option for those looking to have a solution that can work for any type of dryer. However, like exhaust fans, the corrugated construction of air ductwork means that they can get easily clogged with lint without proper maintenance.
Whether ceiling fans, standup fans, or fans attached directly to a vent, fans help circulate air around. Some fans, like exterior wall-mounted fans or window-sized ventilation fans, can both let out and bring cool air in at the same time.
Ceiling fans especially provide you with an affordable option compared to installing exhaust fans or vent hoods, which require special equipment and must meet specific safety requirements. Fans work best in small, enclosed spaces since their effectiveness is limited compared to other forms of cooling. They also use less energy compared to other forms of ventilation.
Factors to Consider When Installing Laundry Room Ventilation
Not all methods of ventilation can be utilised, whether due to lack of space or cost restraints. Regardless of the method chosen, you should consider a few factors when deciding which ventilation system is right for your laundry room.
Location of Laundry Room
Most forms of ventilation described in this article require some form of installation, either by drilling holes or altering existing ventilation in your building. If you do not own the property or you do not have the proper piping, then some methods that require directly reaching the outdoors will be untenable.
Your laundry also might be located in a small, enclosed space with no windows and no access to an exterior wall to install a vent. In those cases, fans might be your only option but also may only provide a temporary solution.
Conversely, if your laundry room has multiple windows, you might not need to do little more than make sure they are open when you run the dryer. Be sure to thoroughly inspect your laundry room facilities when considering the ventilation system you think will best suit your needs.
With persistent inflation and the ever-changing availability of resources, the cost of a project is a major consideration in the type of ventilation you choose.
But cost considerations should factor in more than just immediate expense; they should also include an assessment of what damage can occur if you choose not to take action (e.g., mould and mildew damage and the cost to fix such damage).
In addition, some forms of ventilation will require spending money or take more time to maintain, such as replacing dirty filters or cleaning lint and dirt buildup from exhaust fans.
Installing ventilation also varies considerably depending on your location and availability of the materials you choose to use for ventilation, including finding experienced workers able to install your ventilation system.
You can save money by performing the installation yourself, but you should be sure that your ventilation system meets proper building regulations. Improper installation of ventilation systems not only might not be as effective, but they can also create fire hazards.
How Often You Use Your Laundry Room
Depending on your needs, you might need to invest more or less money on laundry room ventilation. If you use your laundry room often, especially in an enclosed and humid environment, you should consider more advanced ventilation. If you only occasionally use your laundry room, installing a couple of windows or an exhaust fan might be the best solution.
Expert Ventilation System Installation from Lotus Commercial
The professionals at Lotus Commercial provide businesses of any size with over 30 years of commercial cleaning experience and a commitment to excellence. We understand that the work we do is crucial to the wellness and safety of your commercial space.
Our comprehensive laundry exhaust cleaning services include all forms of ventilation, including ventilation systems, exhaust fans, ductwork, and filters. We inspect and remove all lint, dust, and other debris from your ventilation system to help your laundry room run effectively and efficiently.
Lotus Commercial serves a wide range of metropolitan areas across Australia, including Melbourne, Perth, Cairns, Brisbane, Townsville and Sydney. Contact us today to schedule your quote for reliable, cost-effective laundry exhaust cleaning services.