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The Five Biggest Mistakes Home Owners Make When Installing a Whole House Fan
Big mistake number one:
One of the biggest mistakes a homeowner can make is going to the local hardware store and buying a home fan without doing proper research first. If you assume you have the right size fan, the best manufacturer, or all the information you need to install a whole house fan yourself, you need to call someone to correct your mistakes.
Solution number one:
Hire a reputable electrical contractor to install whole house fans. Although the project may be relatively small, there is more to it than just drilling holes in your roof and turning it on. A well-qualified electrician will know: what size fan to use, whether you have adequate attic ventilation, where to open the fan, and when is the best time to use the fan to maximize its benefits.
Problem number two:
Installing a fan without proper tools, proper insulation and proper placement of the main intake vent is a big mistake.
Solution number two:
An electrical service company will always recommend a fan that comes with built-in insulation. When it’s cold, it’s important to have proper insulation in fans, fan housings, vent openings, and attic vents so you don’t lose money by letting warm air escape. Also, a good licensed electrician will know that a whole house fan needs to be installed in a location that allows for maximum airflow from windows and attics.
Mistake number three:
Buying the cheapest attic fan from a website is a really big mistake. These units are a cheaper investment compared to HVAC. Less expensive models are not insulated, have generic fan assemblies and are very loud. The last thing you want is to hear a sound like a rocket going off inside your home or a squeaky fan assembly every time you turn on the house fan.
Solution number three:
Go ahead and get a quality attic fan that has good reviews and low maintenance. A quick search of many consumer goods review sites will point you in the right direction. Also, consult your electrical contractor. They may carry a particular brand of whole house attic fan that they trust and have a good reputation as a quality product. Definitely don’t go with a brand that doesn’t have a past performance history or good reviews from many people.
Mistake number four: (and this is a big one)
Installing an attic fan that is too large for the home is one of the biggest mistakes a homeowner can make. If the attic is not properly ventilated, a house fan that is too big can pull all the hot air up from the interior space and into the attic, and then push that hot air back down into the house through ceiling lights, electrical outlets. , HVAC vents, small cracks, wall switches. In fact, a fan that’s too big for a home can overheat, not cool.
Solution number four:
Before installing an indoor fan, consult an electrical contractor and choose the right model for your home. If you don’t have adequate attic ventilation, there are a few simple steps to provide that ventilation. Ridge vents, gable vents, soffit vents, and whirly gigs are all viable options for attic ventilation. A good electrical service company will also work with a licensed builder who can usually add proper attic ventilation within a day if there is none.
Generally, a small house fan will cool the house with less wasted energy than a large fan, which is often not much. The goal of a whole house fan is balanced airflow. Because of the constant movement of air throughout the house, it stays cool with less energy. Also, a smaller indoor fan means less installation work, which is always a bonus.
Mistake number five:
Using a whole house attic fan with the windows closed can be potentially dangerous. A whole house attic fan works by drawing cool air from the exterior of the house through open windows and pushing warm air up through the attic vents to exit the house. If you close the windows, there is a good chance that air will be drawn through the diverter above the water heater or boiler. This means that toxic carbon monoxide can be pushed into living spaces, creating a potentially fatal situation.
Solution number five:
Make sure to open the windows before turning on the whole house fan! An indoor attic fan is not meant to recirculate bad stale air throughout the house. Its primary function is to remove hot air from the home and provide a less expensive, environmentally friendly cooling solution than HVAC. In fact, a properly installed whole-house fan can cool an average-sized home for a tenth of the cost of air conditioning.
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