How to select the best AOV kit for the job | 2020 Update

To make the AOV selection process more straightforward, we have created this simple step-by-step guide to selecting the best AOV kit for your project.

The importance of smoke control

The installation of smoke control systems in buildings is vitally important. They help ensure escape routes, such as stairwells and communal corridors, remain relatively free from smoke and heat in the event of a fire. Smoke is a big threat to the occupants in a building as they can lose consciousness quickly after breathing it in. Effective smoke control enables occupants of the building to escape and the fire service to enter a building safely.

AOV Kits - a reliable and low-cost alternative for smoke vent applications

Easivent offers a comprehensive range of AOV kits designed specifically for self-installation by mechanical and electrical contractors. The kits contain the relevant ventilators, actuators, control panels, smoke detectors and switches designed to work without the need for specialist installation or commissioning services.  The kits are for use in common escape routes such as lobbies, corridors and stairwells within certain buildings. Typically, these will be high-rise residential or commercial premises. They can be installed as either stand-alone systems or be inter-connected to form modular "smoke shaft" systems without the need of additional interfaces or software. All products used are CE marked and conform to the relevant British and European standards.

What is inside an AOV kit?

Our AOV Kits contain all the relevant components and are designed to work without the need for specialist installation or commissioning services. After selecting an AOV Kit, you will find a combination of the following products inside:

  • Ventilators
  • Actuators
  • Control panels
  • Smoke detectors
  • Switches

How to select the right AOV kit for your project

Step 1. Stairwell or lobby?

To begin with, you should determine whether the kit needs to operate in a stairwell, or a corridor/lobby.

Step 2. Is there an existing window?

When you’re working with a stairwell, you need to decide if you can use an existing window at the top of the stairwell for smoke clearance and ventilation.

slelcting AOV kit
Existing window:

AOV kit H that includes a chain drive to automatically open the window.

No window:

If this is not possible then you will need to install a whole kit with a roof vent or complete window - go to step 4.

Step 3. Chain stroke length

For AOV Kit H you need to determine the chain drive stroke length. Chain drives are pre-programmed for chain length and force to suit different project implementations.

This can be discussed with the SCS Group sales support team prior to order, alternatively you can learn how to access the equipment programming yourself as part of our training for Approved Installers. 

Step 4. Roof mounted vent or louvre window

If a complete new vent is required, then there is the option of either:

Read our blog Which stairwell ventilator can I use on my roof  to help with your decision.

Step 5. Supply of doors, controls and actuators

If corridor or lobby vents are required, then it is important for you to decide what is required with respect to the supply of doors, controls, and actuators.

  • AOV kit I if you require smoke ventilation by automatically opening an existing window.
  • AOV kit J if you require smoke ventilation into a shaft by automatically opening an existing fire door into a shaft.
  • AOV kit E if you require smoke ventilation into a shaft by automatically opening a CE-marked smoke shaft vent.

If the corridor AOV is venting into a natural smoke shaft (BRE shaft), you will need a vent at the head of the shaft.

  • AOV kit G if you require smoke evacuation by automatically opening a roof hatch at head of shaft
  • AOV kit F by automatically opening a louvred vent at head of shaft.

approved installerStep 6. Mechanical smoke extraction

Finally, if you require mechanical smoke extraction from a smoke shaft then you will need to contact one of our Approved Installers.

The AOV kits are all available off-the-shelf for self-installation by electrical contractors, and are all supported by the SCS Group sales team prior to order.

Under the Construction Products Regulations (CPR) it is a legal requirement to use only certified products for smoke ventilation. For more information see SCS Group's Technical Bulletin here.

Important notice

Existing facade or roof openings in the building envelope to be used as smoke extraction openings are absolutely legally compliant and there is no obligation under current legislation to apply EN12101 to opening vents for residential apartment buildings. Download our technical bulletin for more information regarding regulations.


Interested in the self-installation of smoke control systems?

Become a SCS Approved Installer


Download the Approved Installer Brochure


Shop by category

see all

Subscribe to Email Updates