The main goal of the Phius Ventilator Certification Program is to comprehensively evaluate heat-recovery and energy-recovery ventilators’ suitability for passive building applications.
Defining the end goal of the program was easy, but the path to it has not been. Our technical staff has been busy analyzing existing data, creating a new set of criteria, and tinkering to balance the stringency of the program with available test methods. The end result will be a comprehensive certification program that pairs useful performance data for energy modeling with Phius-specific endorsements for most types of ventilators.
The foundation of the Phius Ventilator Certification Program is the six categories for which it gives out endorsements:
- Thermal Performance & Climate Zone Endorsements
- Electrical Performance
- Air Quality
- Defrost & Condensate
- Summer Bypass Mode
Of those, only acoustics has non-critical endorsements, meaning that a product can miss out on certification if it does not meet minimum criteria in all these areas — except for acoustics.
The presence of those critical endorsements means it is a certification program and not “just” a rating system. But this program’s evaluation goes beyond a simple yes-or-no certification. Products can earn a variety of endorsements under each of the six categories mentioned above, including climate zone-specific endorsements.
Another aspect of the Phius Ventilator Certification Program intended to ensure reliable data is its annual verification process. Units selected at random will be subjected to physical testing as a means of verifying that performance remains consistent. In order to make the program as fair and equitable as possible, Phius has developed its own methodology for selecting units for verification each year. The formula is such that products made by “high-volume” manufacturers will be selected more often than those made by “low-volume” manufacturers.
Building a program of this scope has come with its challenges, but the technical team at Phius has remained committed to making the program comprehensive. This has meant figuring out ways to account for a wide variety of ventilator systems varying from small packaged units to large commercial components. As an all-encompassing program, the Phius Ventilator Certification Program will adapt as new ventilation devices are developed.
As with all Phius product certification programs, the ventilator program aims to collect performance data that can be used for energy modeling while also providing a comprehensive and consistent set of performance standards that can be used to compare products.
As Phius continues to bring passive building into the mainstream, we will continue to provide any and every tool possible to those willing to help. The Phius Ventilator Certification Program is one of the main product-related tools we are providing. We look forward to seeing its impact on the growth of passive building across the world.