A good friend of mine was taking his father to the Meijer Heart Center at Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids. He said he was sitting in the waiting area where he was feeling very uncomfortable.
He said cold air was blowing from a register above him making it very uncomfortable. He recalled seeing on the wall next to him that people would go over to the thermostat on the wall to make adjustments trying to solve the problems. It reminded of one of my pet-peeves. Lack of Comfort indoors!!
Keep in mind, this is a multi-million dollar facility which is a beautiful place with great people and awesome services. I'm not suggesting the solution is so easy; it's just that in the year 2015, we should be able to do better.
I find too many home owners accept being uncomfortable. Building science experts have stated( it's a little techy):
"Most homeowners assume that many aspects of their homes such as indoor air quality and its health effects, comfort issues in unduly hot or cold rooms, duct/air handler and street noise, HVAC equipment repair needs, and structural deterioration due to uncontrolled air movement and moisture entrapment are not amenable to correction, even though comprehensive energy assessments and retrofits can remedy such problems routinely while dramatically reducing energy costs."
Nowadays, homeowners are gradually seeking solutions to these problems.
The questions should be, why would you be willing to invest hundreds of thousands of your dollars into a home where you and your family will spend most of your time and you don't really know whether you will be comfortable in it or not?
We know homeowners are doing their own homework online. Many people are having discussion online in the numerous HVAC chat rooms (GardenWeb HVAC); where they are trying to solve, what they call, thermal comfort problems.
If your decision on your indoor climate is not based on science...you can fall prey to the sales pitch of contractors selling their products/equipment.
So resources at www.healthyheating.com are pretty interesting when it comes to defining "thermal comfort" for human beings. They made a comment about the industry saying, "if all you carry in your pouch is a hammer, everything looks like a nail"? "Well a large segment of the industry only carries a hammer and tries to solve every thermal comfort problem with equipment and mechanical systems without understanding the real problems."
They go on to say, "just look around you, in the magazines, at the shopping mall at the show homes...everybody does it but very few really put comfort into scientific terms...you can buy a comfort heating system from a comfort specialist, sit in a comfortable chair, walk on comfortable flooring, wear comfortable clothes all under comfortable lighting and soothing music but yet still feel hot, dry, damp, clammy and cold...what's up with that?"
As an industry, we have to do a better job of educating homeowners what works based on solid building science and practical application.
As a local Battle Creek area company, Sims Heating and Cooling is constantly working on the information that will help homeowners make the best decision when it comes to their indoor environment.
You can begin by taking our 'Homes That Perform' Survey