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Make up air in tight house construction

New home builders in Maine have often included dedicated make up air supply for fireplace and wood stove locations, but as houses get tighter and tighter in an effort to conserve energy, make up air for other devices that exhaust air from the building envelope such as kitchen exhaust fans should be considered.

Unfortunately however, the manufacturers of these items are not typically prepared with recommendations and provisions to help homeowners and contractors determine what is best to do.

An excellent article on this subject:  Make up air for range hoods  can be read here.

Solutions to consider are to either select low CFM devices, re-circulating devices, or provide make up air to avoid the pitfalls of high CFM air exhaust and a tight building envelope.

Depending on total square footage, even houses with whole house air exchange systems may require additional make up air if the CFM volume of air exhausted exceeds the exchange system capacity.

Of course you could always open a window a little bit as many people have done for years to avoid back drafting stoves and fireplaces, but with a little thought and advanced planning that can hopefully be avoided.