I live in the northeastern part of the country, and the weather swings from extremely cold to brutally hot. Our winter season typically lasts between six and eight months, and the temperature is often below freezing. Sometimes, the temperature even plummets well below zero. During the summer, the temperature often climbs up into the nineties, and the humidity is excessive. Fall and spring are usually chilly and wet with lots of high winds and thunderstorms. There is rarely an opportunity to shutdown the heating/cooling system and open the windows. Because we rely on either the furnace or air conditioner year round, the majority of my budget is devoted to monthly energy bills. I’ve taken all sorts of extra measures to trim energy waste. I’ve added insulation, weather stripping and caulked around all of the windows. I’ve sealed up every crack, crevice, or hole that might allow the heated or cooled air to leak out. While this has helped to lower my monthly expenses and improve comfort, it also created a concern with air quality. The same stale air was trapped inside the house and continually circulated by the furnace and air conditioner. With no ventilation, there was a great deal of dust, dander, bacteria and other contaminants floating around. I finally consulted with an HVAC contractor, and he recommended that I invest in a ventilation system. The ventilation systems runs all year long and works to bring in outside fresh air and get rid of stale, polluted air. It helps to create a cleaner, fresher and healthier home, while conserving energy. The ventilation system uses the outgoing air to preheat the incoming air, lessening the workload of the furnace. It combats excess humidity and reduces strain on the air conditioner.