Nyproduktion lägenhet med FTX ventilation systemet - kan inte söva pga ljudet

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Aug 2020

Nyproduktion lägenhet med FTX ventilation systemet - kan inte söva pga ljudet

Hej!

I don't know if it's the right place to ask, but I'll give it a shot.

Problem
In November 2018 I bought a new production (nyproduktion) apartment of 33 sqm by signing a budförtecking and förhandsavtal contract. The construction of the building wasn't even started at that point of time, therefore the only material available to decide upon was the brochure and the description of the "object" written in the contract above.

The apartment was planned to be delivered two years after, in May 2020.

The budförtecking contract and the brochure, in regard to the ventilation system, only stated "FTX-system", but anything more.
The förhandsavtal contract didn't state anything on that regard.
Fast-forwarding, we reached May 2020 and I got the keys.

The only room in the apartment has two luftventiler which emit 27-32 dbs of constant noise, which doesn't allow me to sleep during the night or work during the day.
Imagine to live like there is somebody in the apartment above vacuum cleaning 24/7.

The ventilation system is for the whole building (it's basically a big fan on the roof delivering air thru big pipes to every apartment).
You can look at a diagram here: http://www.svenskventilation.se/ventilation/olika-satt-att-ventilera/ftx-varmeatervinning/

I did some researches online, and it seems to be an issue also for other people.

The day after the inflyttningdatum I opened a complain ticket with the constructor, stating that I didn't sign for this.
It's not possible for me to properly sleep and live in the apartment with this constant noise.

The apartment is placed in a very quiet neighborhood, and in the evening and in the weekends is more silent outside than inside (!).
They sent to me the ventilation guy who took some measurements (27-32 db) and they stated it's within the ljudklass C range, that it's the ljudklass they follow.

Cool, the problem is that the ljudklass has never been comunicated or agreed with me.
The FTX ventilation system could also be designed to support ljudklass B for example.

In the contract I signed, this information has not been provided.
Being a light sleeper, I would have never agreed to buy an apartment like this knowing about the ljud emitted.

I never saw an apartment that generates (!) noise before.
It's like living in a giant microwave.

Question
I'm still discussing it with the constructor, but I would like to ask: is there something else I can do?
Is there some public body who helps people with this kind of issues?

Hallåkonsument doesn't seem to cover these issues.

There has been at least another thread on the forum about this topic, but perhaps there are some updates since 2016.

Did somebody have the same issue and solve it somehow?

As I see, the constructor has concealed a known issue of the FTX-systemet (the noise) to the customer.

Tack för din hjälp!
-rvf

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Vibrations and sound can travel far in metal ventilation pipes,
they probably cheaped out on soundtraps near the fans/heat Exchanger
and added an underdimensioned system.

Dont you have any control over flow? Maybe you can get the owner to change to a minimal program after 22.00

What I did was to remove paper from a toilet roll until it fit in the pipe in the bedroom.
Maybe it limits flow, but also muffles some noise.

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Ventilationsaggregat låter, även de som inte är värmeåtervinnande. Sök hjälp av sjukvården för sömnen och hälsan eller sälj lägenheten och flytta till en villa med självdrag utan värmepump.

Finns ingen hjälp av få när det gäller ljudvolymen, är det något fel på anläggningen kanske det däremot kommer frekvenser som kan försvinna vid åtgärd.

30-35 dBa är normalt bakgrundsljud i en bostad, miljökontoret i kommunen kan inte göra något när det handlar om dessa nivåer, utan det måste vara över 45 dBa inomhus för att det ska bli aktuellt.

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Feb 2012
Skrivet av pacc:

Vibrations and sound can travel far in metal ventilation pipes,
they probably cheaped out on soundtraps near the fans/heat Exchanger
and added an underdimensioned system.

Dont you have any control over flow? Maybe you can get the owner to change to a minimal program after 22.00

What I did was to remove paper from a toilet roll until it fit in the pipe in the bedroom.
Maybe it limits flow, but also muffles some noise.

I think/guessing if it it's a cental system changing flow is usually not allowed as it can affect the system/other apartments set to be balanced, though if it's really necessary sometimes (or I guess maybe most times) the only way forward is doing it anyway.

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Okt 2003

It's a shame that you have such an experience with an FTX system. Installing an FTX system in our house was the best thing that have ever happened with the house.

But I guess that it can be one of three things really:
Too much airflow for the ducts/to small ducts for the airflow.
Not quiet vents.
Or no proper dampening in the ducts.

Maybe you should have a ventilation technician there to check the airflow and see if it's sized correctly for the apartment (should be 0,35 l/h/m2)

When I force our system to maximum airflow we get a whooshing airflow noise. But in normal operation it's almost completely silent (not really noticeable).
But there are several noise dampers both near the FTX-unit as well as close to the vents, as well as silent vents.

But if the problem is that there is not enough dampening near you vents then there is one solution that you can install very easily, the Inno dampers at the bottom of the page: https://soliduct.se/ventilationssystem/ljuddampare.htm
Remove the vent and stuff one of those in the end of the pipe and put back the vent again. Done.
Much better than the toilet roll tip above.

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@loefet: Det är bostadsrättsföreningen som ansvarar för ventilationssystemet, inte bostadsinnehavaren eller byggherren. Sen måste man acceptera att det alltid kommer låta om ventilationssystemet, i en lägenhet kommer du t.o.m. höra ventilationssystemen i grannhusen.

Skulle det låta ovanligt, alltså i toner eller frekvenser ventilationssystem som fungerar normalt inte brukar låta hade grannar reagerat, här kan möjligen mindre åtgärder göras av bostadsrättsföreningen, men det är knappast något som lär täckas som byggfel eller göra någon jätteskillnad i ljudet man hör.

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Without having heard the sound the db lvl is normal for that kind of system. I checked the sound in my apartment and it was 44db close to the vent. There was a time after the fan engine was change that the system was tuned to far up and that made much more noise and created a noticeable under pressure in my appartment.

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Aug 2020
Skrivet av pacc:

Vibrations and sound can travel far in metal ventilation pipes,
they probably cheaped out on soundtraps near the fans/heat Exchanger
and added an underdimensioned system.
Dont you have any control over flow? Maybe you can get the owner to change to a minimal program after 22.00
What I did was to remove paper from a toilet roll until it fit in the pipe in the bedroom.
Maybe it limits flow, but also muffles some noise.

Thank you for you answer and for sharing your experience with me.

No, I have no control at all unfortunately.

I know there are some ljuddampare one can buy to reduce the noise from the pipe, but it seems they reduce the flow and could create bad odour (for ex. kitcken smell) in the neighborhood's apartments, which if discovered by BRF could lead to extra cost for you.

If the constructor would propose that as a solution, I will give it a try, but I'm reluctant to hack the ventilation myself.

-rvf

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Aug 2020
Skrivet av Petterk:

Ventilationsaggregat låter, även de som inte är värmeåtervinnande. Sök hjälp av sjukvården för sömnen och hälsan eller sälj lägenheten och flytta till en villa med självdrag utan värmepump.
Finns ingen hjälp av få när det gäller ljudvolymen, är det något fel på anläggningen kanske det däremot kommer frekvenser som kan försvinna vid åtgärd.
30-35 dBa är normalt bakgrundsljud i en bostad, miljökontoret i kommunen kan inte göra något när det handlar om dessa nivåer, utan det måste vara över 45 dBa inomhus för att det ska bli aktuellt.

Thank you for your answer!

Yes, definitely a decent doctor could easily confirm how living with this noise 24/7 is affecting my body.

I can't afford a villa and they are placed un-coveniently compared to where I work and aim to work in the next years, but I'm already discussing with some other constructors to understand if the apartments they have on sale in my same area use the same system and/or have a better ljudklass.

But it seems that for the swedish law starting 2021 all the new apartments will need to have some energy-saving measures (which I don't think should necessarily mean a ventilation system, but still), therefore most of the new apartments built in Sweden will be giant microwaves.

An alternative would be to buy a pre-1976 apartment without these electro-mechanical ventilation systems in place (FX or FTX).

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Skrivet av lappen81:

I think/guessing if it it's a cental system changing flow is usually not allowed as it can affect the system/other apartments set to be balanced, though if it's really necessary sometimes (or I guess maybe most times) the only way forward is doing it anyway.

Thank you for your answer.

Yes, exactly.
And it seems the system is set on the mid setting.
Probably setting it to the minimum wouldn't provide enough airflow to the bigger apartments.

A possible solution could be to shut it off after 22:00, like they do with the tvättstugor in some buildings, but I don't know which consequences could that have.

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Skrivet av loefet:

It's a shame that you have such an experience with an FTX system. Installing an FTX system in our house was the best thing that have ever happened with the house.

But I guess that it can be one of three things really:
Too much airflow for the ducts/to small ducts for the airflow.
Not quiet vents.
Or no proper dampening in the ducts.

Maybe you should have a ventilation technician there to check the airflow and see if it's sized correctly for the apartment (should be 0,35 l/h/m2)

When I force our system to maximum airflow we get a whooshing airflow noise. But in normal operation it's almost completely silent (not really noticeable).
But there are several noise dampers both near the FTX-unit as well as close to the vents, as well as silent vents.

But if the problem is that there is not enough dampening near you vents then there is one solution that you can install very easily, the Inno dampers at the bottom of the page: https://soliduct.se/ventilationssystem/ljuddampare.htm
Remove the vent and stuff one of those in the end of the pipe and put back the vent again. Done.
Much better than the toilet roll tip above.

Thank you for you answer.

Yes, I'm aware that there are some ljuddampare one can buy to reduce the noise from the pipe, but in a BRF could lead to some other issues compared to your own villa, where you basically do as you please.

My point here is that the apartment doesn't match 100% what the contract states.

The ljudklass and more specifications about the ventilation system should be provided to the customer, since not everybody sleeps the same and since the potential huge impact on the customer's health of this omitted information.

The customer should be explicitly agree to live and sleep in an apartment that generates 30db of noise 24/7 that you as a customer have zero control over.

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The sound level you're describing is very low. It's at the same level as a person whispering.

That said I sometimes notice a vibration in my house at bed time. This happens only sometimes, even though it's always there, and it makes it harder to sleep because I get annoyed from the sound.
I think this noise has stuck in your head. You notice it because you know it's there, and you don't like it because you know you're a light sleeper more than the noise itself wakes you up.

Buying an apartment or house is always a gamble. Sometimes the neighbors are noisy, sometimes there is noise from the outside. Unfortunately if you can't accept it, the only other option is moving.

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Skrivet av Coca:

Without having heard the sound the db lvl is normal for that kind of system. I checked the sound in my apartment and it was 44db close to the vent. There was a time after the fan engine was change that the system was tuned to far up and that made much more noise and created a noticeable under pressure in my appartment.

Thank you for your answer.

Yes, the decibels are within the ljudklass C range, but the problem here is that buying an apartment "on paper" means the customer has no way other than reading the contract and the brochures to know which ljudklass the apartment will adhere to.

If you don't specify it, for me the apartment will be 0 db in the bedrooms, like any other normal apartment.

I didn't sign for that, otherwise for me it would be fine: I got it what I signed for, my issue now.

But here the problem is different, and I think Hålla Konsument should take care of these issues.
Buying an apartment on paper is no different than buying a television.

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27-32 dBa är helt normalt. Det är verkligen inga konstigheter och inget specifikt för Sverige. Jag ser två alternativ.

1. Din lägenhet har 27-32 dBa och ljudet inom alla frekvenser är okej. Du har då ett medicinskt problem som sjukvården får hjälpa dig med.

2. Din lägenhet har någon form av buller på ett visst frekvensband som ni inte lyckats mäta upp ännu. Då behöver det åtgärdas av byggherren.

Ändrade en felskrivning angående frekvenser
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Skrivet av giplet:

The sound level you're describing is very low. It's at the same level as a person whispering.

That said I sometimes notice a vibration in my house at bed time. This happens only sometimes, even though it's always there, and it makes it harder to sleep because I get annoyed from the sound.
I think this noise has stuck in your head. You notice it because you know it's there, and you don't like it because you know you're a light sleeper more than the noise itself wakes you up.

Buying an apartment or house is always a gamble. Sometimes the neighbors are noisy, sometimes there is noise from the outside. Unfortunately if you can't accept it, the only other option is moving.

Thank you for your answer.

Noise level is quite a subjective topic.
For example, garlic and chili are totally legal food, and many eat those everyday, while people with gastritis or reflux get pain out of them.

It's definitely a gamble for the outside noises yes (neighbors, noises from the street, etc...), but it's not for the inside noises.
This is why Boverket established the ljudklasser that all the constructors must adhere to.
The minimum is ljudklass C for residential buildings, then there is ljudklass B and ljudklass A.

I think it's common sense to say that what the constructor states on the contract is what they are legally bound to provide to you once the building is ready for moving in.

To give a bit of more context, JM for example states the ljudklass of their apartments on their website.
I don't know about their contracts, but at least on their website they state:

"Störande ljud och buller uppfattas av många som det största problemet i boendemiljön. Bostaden dimensioneras på JM för ljudklass B (och är därmed tystare än vad de svenska byggreglerna kräver) avseende installationer samt luft- och stegljud mellan lägenheter."

This information should be totally transparent to the buyer, and not concealed.

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Skrivet av rvf:

If you don't specify it, for me the apartment will be 0 db in the bedrooms, like any other normal apartment.

0 dB finns inte i en enda normal lägenhet i hela världen. 0 dB = sensory deprivation och skulle över tid göra dig psykiskt sjuk.

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Skrivet av Jumpcut:

27-32 dBa är helt normalt. Det är verkligen inga konstigheter och inget specifikt för Sverige. Jag ser två alternativ.

1. Din lägenhet har 27-32 dBa på alla frekvenser vilket är normalt. Du har då ett medicinskt problem som sjukvården får hjälpa dig med.

2. Din lägenhet har någon form av buller på ett visst frekvensband som ni inte lyckats mäta upp ännu. Då behöver det åtgärdas av byggherren.

Thank you for your answer.

I would use better terminology: it's not "normal", it's just "approved by law".

If you come from an apartment without a ventilation system as I did (or from a villa I guess), you don't have the same issue.
The bedroom is 0 db, straight, helt tyst.

To be very honest, this is the first time I saw an apartment that generates noise here, and in Europe in general.
I saw some in Asia due of the tropical weather + conditioned air, but you can shut off the conditioned air with a button or a remote.

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Du kan inte hävda byggfel för något som inte ingår i lägenheten du får nyttja. Skulle det vara byggfel på ventilationen så är det BRF:en som får ta det med byggherren.

Klagomål får du ta till BRF:en.

Det finns 50-talshus (lägenhet) att bo i med självdrag, men dessa lägenheter är lyhörda, och fördelen med självdrag försvinner så fort någon lokal på bottenplan installerar A/C.

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Skrivet av Jumpcut:

0 dB finns inte i en enda normal lägenhet i hela världen. 0 dB = sensory deprivation och skulle över tid göra dig psykiskt sjuk.

"0 db" wasn't to be interpreted literally of course, we aren't discussing an anechoic chamber.
I meant "reasonably silent".

Perhaps they are 15-20 db with some peaks if somebody in the street talks while passing by, but for sure not a constant 30 db "woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo" vacuum cleaner-like noise.

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Skrivet av Petterk:

Du kan inte hävda byggfel för något som inte ingår i lägenheten du får nyttja. Skulle det vara byggfel på ventilationen så är det BRF:en som får ta det med byggherren.

Klagomål får du ta till BRF:en.

Det finns 50-talshus (lägenhet) att bo i med självdrag, men dessa lägenheter är lyhörda, och fördelen med självdrag försvinner så fort någon lokal på bottenplan installerar A/C.

Yes, I will try that route once the BRF styrelsen will be nominated, just to have an additional opinion.
But here I do think that the problem is contractual between the buyer and the constructor.

The constructor provided the ljudklass to the BRF, and I'm sure the FTX aggregat meets all the legal requirements.

The problem here is that they didn't inform the buyer when the contract has been signed.
I find it strange that Hålla Konsument doesn't cover these consumer issues.

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Skrivet av rvf:

Thank you for your answer!

Yes, definitely a decent doctor could easily confirm how living with this noise 24/7 is affecting my body.

I can't afford a villa and they are placed un-coveniently compared to where I work and aim to work in the next years, but I'm already discussing with some other constructors to understand if the apartments they have on sale in my same area use the same system and/or have a better ljudklass.

But it seems that for the swedish law starting 2021 all the new apartments will need to have some energy-saving measures (which I don't think should necessarily mean a ventilation system, but still), therefore most of the new apartments built in Sweden will be giant microwaves.

You need to exchange air in some way or another. If you do, that means heat is removed from the building in winter, which you then need to replace. This means energy use. What FTX does is use the old air to preheat the fresh air from outside. You can also use "frånluftsvärmepump", which instead heats water for the heating system with the energy from the air before it's expelled outside. This is typical in many new smaller houses.

Older houses with "självdrag" works on the principle that there's a difference in temperature between the inside and outside, creating a draft. Still, energy is removed when it's cold outside. The problem with this system is that ventilation increases when it's cold outside, removing more heat, and decreases when it's hot, not removing enough air. You'll therefore need to open the windows. Ventilation in bathrooms has a tendency to be somewhat too low for how much moisture is generated by modern behaviour. Especially in villas without "ångspärr" this can also lead to moisture getting into the attic and condensating onto the inside of the roof, in the long run resulting in mold.

Citat:

An alternative would be to buy a pre-1976 apartment without these electro-mechanical ventilation systems in place (FX or FTX).

Then you really need to check, since mechanical ventilation can be found in many old houses as well. Even those from the 50's may have had "mekanisk frånluft" since new, though usually only in bathrooms änd kitchens. Right now I'm in one from the 30's which has it as well. In this case the noise travels down the chimney to the fireplace, granted it's not in the bedroom. A much bigger problem is constant noise from neighbours, both in the house itself and neighbouring ones. People simply can't behave. They throw parties which lasts half the night, walk on their heels even in the middle of the night, slam doors, drawers etc shut which creates noise almost 24/7. I've completely given up. The only sure way to fall asleep is earplugs. I'd take slight noise from the ventilation system any day. To add to this there's a fountain which creates a lot of noise 13 hours per day more than half the year... You might be lucky, but don't count on older buildings being better just because they lack FTX. You might find they're worse if you're unlucky. Even if you're lucky someone might move out and another one move in... And one more thing: almost constant renovations, especially bathrooms, might drive you mad very quickly. This normally doesn't happen in new buildings at the same rate, since everything is new.

(And just now, someone slammed the door to the elevator shut with a loud bang... An elevator which had some worn out bearing earlier, creating noise for months on end every time someone used it, which of course, spread all along the elevator shaft.)

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We also have an FTX system in our apartment, built 2011.
In my kitchen I have a switch where I can switch off the system or choose two different levels.
When I start my kitchen fan for example, this automatically sets the FTX system to maximum flow.
However, our FTX system is locally placed in our apartment with the fan and heat exchanger integrated into my kitchen fan above the stove.

When we first moved in we did not know we had to run the system at the medium flow. This resulted in a lot of silver fishes running around in our apartment. After some research I found out that silver fishes love moist and with no ventilation in our apartment we probably had to high humidity in the air. Newer buildings are so sealed that they allow no airflow in the apartment and instead the FTX system must be on.

Just a little heads-up in case you think of shutting down the system.

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A vaccum cleaner emmits aprox 70db of noice.
It is 16 times higher noise than 30db, stop comparing your FTX ventilation with a vacuum cleaner.

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Skrivet av Savage_Gray:

A vaccum cleaner emmits aprox 70db of noice.
It is 16 times higher noise than 30db, stop comparing your FTX ventilation with a vacuum cleaner.

They can be louder than that, but the comparison was that a neighbour was vacuuming all the time, not that the vacuum was inside the original posters apartment. I.e. the comparison was regarding the character of the noise emitted.

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Skrivet av rvf:

Perhaps they are 15-20 db with some peaks if somebody in the street talks while passing by

"In general, the interior of an anechoic chamber is very quiet, with typical noise levels in the 10–20 dBA range. "
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anechoic_chamber

Maybe try getting a hold of a noise meter to see if the noise level varies during the day? You could also try getting more carpets and in general filling the apartment more so the sound doesn't bounce around in the rooms as much, hard surfaces will give you louder noise.
As a more extreme step I guess you could mount some rockwool outside the airducts so airflow isn't restricted but sound will have to bounce between the wall and rockwool a few times before escaping to the room. Might be worth talking to an acoustician.

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A small comfort when it comes to FTX noise in a bedroom, is that the brain can adapt to it, it may take a while but it isn't impossible that you'll actually stop hearing it in the end.

I've experienced this myself, I had a rather loud FTX system in a bedroom which bothered me quite a lot, but I gradually heard it less and less over time and in the end (a couple of months, a year?) I couldn't hear it anymore.

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Skrivet av rvf:

"0 db" wasn't to be interpreted literally of course, we aren't discussing an anechoic chamber.
I meant "reasonably silent".

Perhaps they are 15-20 db with some peaks if somebody in the street talks while passing by, but for sure not a constant 30 db "woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo" vacuum cleaner-like noise.

Ljudklass C är lägsta nivå enligt Boverkets byggriktlinjer (om man inte kan motivera ljudklass D pga. orealistiska kostnader etc). Man räknar där med att ca 20% av de boende kan uppleva ljud som lite störande, men inget allvarligt så som du upplever det.

Det normala idag i nyproducerade lägenheter är att man siktar på Ljudklass B. Min egen lägenhet (nyproduktion 2017) har ljudklass B som krav. Det var också tydligt när vi köpte lägenheten från Riksbyggen.

Eftersom jag sitter i styrelsen i min BRF så laddade jag nu ner vårt mätprotokoll från den akustikmätning som gjordes när huset var nytt. I sovrummen ligger vi på ett snitt på ca 24 dBA vilket då är klart godkänt i ljudklass B. 15-20 dBA är inte ens ett krav i bästa ljudklassen, ljudklass A.

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Well I measure about 35 dB average at my computer, in my bedroom. About 47 dB average in the bathroom where there is a vent (mechanical ventilation/exhaust) and about 48 dB average next to the refrigerator in the kitchen. Peaks between 45 och 65 dB. Apartment building built ~1969.

Most of the noticeable sounds in the bedroom comes from the outside like other buildings, wind, traffic and people.

Sounds will get to you if you don't feel well, but 40-50 dB is no problem if you feel well and are generally healthy. If you have sleeping disorder and are in a bad period there really is no sound level that you won't get annoyed or disturbed by.

At a normal office there is no problem with over 60 dB.

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Jul 2001
Skrivet av rvf:

The problem here is that they didn't inform the buyer when the contract has been signed.
I find it strange that Hålla Konsument doesn't cover these consumer issues.

Det är det här jag inte riktigt förstår. Ventilationen hör till föreningen och klarar kraven, och låter säkert mycket mindre än i många andra hus – så hur är det en fråga för Konsumentverket eller andra myndigheter? Huset har byggts åt föreningen och det finns avtal och försäkringar där mellan föreningen och byggherren.

Konsumentverket har information om dolda fel i bostadsrätt: https://www.hallakonsument.se/tips-for-olika-kop/kopa-och-hyr...

Problemet där är att akustikmätningar säkert gjorts och nya sådana inte kommer visa några skillnader. Så det kommer inte gå som dolt fel eller liknande, går givetvis att be de titta på ventilationssystemet ändå, men ljudnivån i sig är nog inget problem.

Första gången en bostadsrätt säljs är det dessutom föreningen som är avtalspart i köpavtalet. Även förhandsavtalet har föreningen som avtalspart formellt sett.

Trädvy Permalänk
Medlem
Plats
Södertälje
Registrerad
Apr 2011

If you haven't specified a sound level in your contract you can't expect better then the legally required minimum. If you wanted a silent apartment you should have written it in the contract.