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How do outside air vents work. The question asked was “I cleaned the air vents in the winter and it was freezing so I stuffed insulation in the vent leading to the outside and it seemed warmer in the house. Should I have done this?

Joshua Lloyd, the pro said:

This duct to the outside is your fresh air supply to the home.

It depends on how tight your house is, and will it cause any ill effects. Newer homes, because they are built tighter are required to bring into the home a prescribed amo0unt of fresh air (set by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers). Not knowing the age of your home, this pipe could have been the low cost solution at the time of construction to satisfy this requirement. (Typical of homes built in the late 90s and 2000s).

The best way to determine if it is needed is to have an energy audit performed by a certified energy auditor.

My recommendation is to remove the insulation from the duct and install a mechanical damper with a timer on it so the duct only stays open a prescribed amount of time.

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