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Conservatory Vent Controllers

Vent Controller Technical

Conservatory vent controller benefits
  • - Automatic conservatory air temperature control
  • - Easy to set & change the desired temperature
  • - Remote electrical operation of one or more roof vents
  • - Manual over-ride for fast opening or closing on demand
  • - Optional additional manual switches remote from the auto controller
  • - Automatic Rain Sensor option to guard against raining-in
  • - Can be left unattended with peace of mind through unpredictable weather
  • - Economic to run, only uses significant power for a few seconds when vents move

How do conservatory vent controllers work?
While most conservatories will have opening glazed panels in the roof for ventilation, it is beneficial to have automatic vent control. Firstly, such vents are generally out of reach, so electric actuators allow them to be more discrete than mechanical linkages.

The electric operation makes it easy to fit control switches in the most convenient locations, such as next to doors. A further small step introduces automatic temperature control using an electronic thermostat fitted in the optimal location for best temperature control.

Finally, to ensure unexpected rain doesn’t enter, an externally mounted rain sensor signals to the controller if rain occurs, and the vents are all automatically closed.

Here’s how it works in more detail…

Each vent/opening window has an electric actuator or motor to open the vent panel and another to drive it closed (or one combined unit). The vent can be opened or closed remotely by supplying electricity to one or the other by cable.

This power can be supplied from a special 3-position manual control [order EL-VC-AVS001 Manual Switch]. Pushing the rocker switch upwards sends power to the opening actuator, pushing it downwards sends power to the closing actuator, letting go returns the switch to the central off position where the vent stays in its present position.

Alternatively, an automatic controller [order EL-VC-AVC002 Automatic Vent Control Unit] will automatically send the appropriate power signals to open or close the vent, depending on whether the space is too hot or cold.

Temperature control on the control unit (thermostat) is set by hand to the desired temperature setting (marked in degrees Celcius), and this setting is compared electronically with a signal from a temperature measuring sensor built into the control unit.

So, the temperature in the controlled space is always controlled to the required set temperature. Clearly, this system cannot generate heat to warm the space on an overcast day or at night, but it makes the best of the heat from the sun and the best of the ventilation to achieve the target temperature.

The Automatic Controller only sends out a power signal when the temperature suddenly becomes too hot or too cold (long enough for the vent actuators to operate fully), and most of the time, the controller is idle.

As well as being economical on electricity, it allows other control elements to override the vent setting, so the manual open & close buttons on the controller, or a separate remote manual switch, will force the vent to the open or closed position regardless of the thermostat setting.

In the event of a subsequent large temperature shift, the thermostat will take over control again to keep the temperature stable. Finally, an even higher priority is awarded to the optional Rain Sensor [order EL-VC-AVC002R Rain Sensor Unit].

The sensor is a small white box installed outdoors and is sensitive to (only) water falling on it. The signal is fed to the Automatic Controller, which, upon detecting rain, will immediately close all vents.

These will be held closed until the weather is dry again (even if the thermostat wants them open or the manual open control is pressed).

In a larger installation, it might be desired to have a manual control in an alternative location distant from the automatic controller. In this case, one or more optional Manual Switches [order EL-VC-AVS001 Vent Motor Switch] can be wired to create greater control flexibility.