In the mid-1950's, a group of North American ventilation product manufacturers got together and started talking about the problem of not being able to compare models and ratings because of the lack of a good standardized testing and certification program.
As a result, they developed a program to properly rate home ventilation products. By 1960, Texas A & M University had been set up as a facility to test and record air delivery of these products. That marked the beginning of standardized testing and certification by HVI, originally chartered in 1955 in New York as the Home Ventilating Fan Institute.
By 1962, all member companies' products had been tested via the developed HVI standards, and HVI ratings were being used in catalogues and product labeling. Products were initially tested and certified based on air flow performance. In 1972, after a multitude of research, sound, or sone rating, was added as a performance indicator.
Since its inception, HVI has served to increase public awareness of the need for adequate and proper ventilation, and to assist builders, contractors and consumers throughout North America in choosing the right ventilation products for their application.