Learn All You Can About the Best Attic Fans Available

Choosing the best attic fan for your home supports lower HVAC operating costs and keeps indoor comfort more consistent. It can also prevent damage to the roof and internal attic structure, as well as protect items stored in the attic.

The Hottest Room in the House

During summer, temperatures inside an underventilated attic can exceed 150 degrees. This extreme heat radiates through the ceiling and raises temperatures in rooms below, causing your air conditioner to run longer and raising operating costs. In winter, heat rising from living spaces below accumulates in the attic, triggering condensation and mold growth and even becoming a factor in ice-dam formation on the roof. You should take all of this into consideration when looking for the best attic fan.

Active Beats Passive

Passive attic ventilation is often insufficient to moderate attic temperatures. A powered attic fan actively draws outdoor air into the attic through existing vents while pulling trapped air out of the attic. Enhanced airflow moderates attic temperatures and reduces operating costs. Here are factors to consider when selecting the best attic fan for your house:

  • A properly sized fan should keep attic temperatures within 10 to 20 degrees of the outdoor temperature. The general sizing calculation multiplies total square footage of the attic floor x 0.7. This result gives you the minimum amount of cubic feet of air (CFM) the fan should move. As an example, a 1,000-square-foot attic requires a fan rated for 700 CFM. If you have a steep roof, add an additional 20% to that CFM figure.
  • Roof-mounted fans should be on the rear side of the roof just below the ridge in the middle of the attic. Gable-mounted fans should be installed on the end of the house that faces away from prevailing wind direction.
  • The fan should be actuated by a thermostat when attic temperatures reach a range between 100 and 110 degrees.
  • Some fans also include a humidity sensor that activates the fan if accumulating humidity in the attic rises too much.

Let the professionals at Paitson Bros. help select the best attic fan for your home. Since 1922, we’ve been the Wabash Valley’s go-to source for residential comfort and efficiency.

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