What is a Duct Fan?
At its simplest, a duct fan (also known as an inline duct fan or simply an inline fan) is a fan that is installed inside of a ventilation duct, rather than at the end point of a duct or through a wall. However, there are many variations of duct fans, and these should be understood before deciding whether or not this is a good way to meet your ventilation needs.
Benefits of Duct Fans
Duct inline fans are often used in situations where the sight of a fan is not desired. These often involve the need to preserve an upscale appearance, such as in the bathrooms of high-end homes or in fancy hotel lobbies. Ventilation is needed, so simply not having a fan at all won't work. Hiding the fan inside the ducts, leaving only a low-profile grating showing, is the best workable option.
In some industrial locations, major ventilation is needed, but there isn't enough room for a typical industrial fan. Making the ducts do double-duty by putting the fan(s) in there takes care of the problem.
A duct inline fan is also good for situations in which putting a fan through the wall would cause security problems. Ductwork is typically already secure at the point where it exits the building, so there putting the fan inside of it provides ventilation without tempting would-be thieves.
Types of Duct Fans
There are a few main types of duct fans, and this ensures that almost any configuration requirement can be met. Two of the most common types are tube axial belt drive duct fans and tube axial direct drive duct fans. Both of these types are tube-shaped, with the fan mounted in the middle of a round housing. They mount easily into round ductwork, which is common in industrial and large-scale retail buildings.
A belt-drive duct fan, as its name implies, uses a belt to transfer power from the motor to the actual fan. These require occasional maintenance to keep the belt at the proper tension, and on occasion, replace the belt. Meanwhile, a direct-drive fan has the motor directly attached to the fan by a driveshaft. There is no belt involved.
Belt-drive fans are typically used where the ductwork has a large number of bends or where the static pressure is high. Direct-drive fans, on the other hand, are good for smaller areas or areas in which it would be difficult to maintain a belt-drive version. Direct-drive fans also tend to be more affordable.
For those with square ducts or very limited space, square duct inline fans are the solution. Their square housings allow them to fit perfectly. They come in both belt-drive and direct-drive versions.
Uses for Duct Fans
Duct fans are used for ventilation, and whether they bring air in or exhaust it out typically depends on how they are mounted. Therefore, they are sometimes called duct vent fans.
Some of these fans are especially made to add power to a ventilation system that's too long for a single fan to do the job. Continental Fan duct booster fans are good examples of this type.
Those who don't need huge duct fans will find that multi-purpose duct fans are good solutions. These smaller units are good for general ventilation needs.
At Industrial Fans Direct, we carry a wide selection of in-line duct fans to meet any need. Look here first when you need to add ventilation.