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Which Is Better Whole House Fan or Attic Fan?

General Proper Ventilation The Home

Which Is Better Whole House Fan or Attic Fan?

When choosing a house exhaust fan, you may want to consider two products - an attic fan that supports the efficiency your home's HVAC system by reducing the solar heat gain that would normally pass through your roofing system, or a whole house attic fan that actively cools the entire home by pulling air in through open windows and doors then exhausts that air at a high speed through an attic space.

Both options are less expensive and more energy-efficient than air conditioning. And during mild seasons like spring and fall, property owners who install whole house ventilation fans may not need to use their AC unit at all!

Benefits of Attic Fans

An attic fan is mounted within the home's attic space to remove that super-hot air that attics hold. The system works by creating negative pressure in the attic that draws which will draw in outdoor air through the roof vents. Attic fans can drastically reduce heat buildup in attics which in turn reduces the amount of heat that will radiate through the floor and into your living space.

Whole house attic fans are typically turned on during the hottest hours of the day, and while they only ventilate the attic space, you can expect this low-cost system to be an effective solution on hot, humid days.

Whole House Ventilation Fans

While a whole house ventilation fan is a more expensive option, homeowners can recoup these costs with increased home value. Whole house fans are powerful, often exchanging indoor air between 30 to 60 times per hour. These systems are more energy-efficient than running an AC unit because they work by drawing cooler air into the home through windows. For this reason, a whole house fan performs better during the cooler times of the day.

When considering whole house ventilation fans, it pays to avoid the cheaper models which may be noisy or ineffective. Also, you want to make sure you select a house exhaust fan that has enough CFM power to cool your home's square footage. 

Which is Better for Your Needs?

For either installation, you will need to create a large opening in the roofing system to facilitate the movement of air from outside into the home's interior. For a whole-house attic fan to be effective you will need to leave some doors and windows open throughout the home, while an attic fan just needs enough soffit space for installation and air intake.

If you live in a very hot area with many hours of daytime solar heating, an attic fan may be more effective at alleviating the burden from your AC units. But, for the fastest and most efficient home cool-down, a whole house attic fan can cool off a home within one hour. But consider that these fans are not the best choice for very humid climates and they are more difficult to install.

Visit us at Industrial Fans Direct for more information on residential whole house ventilation fans and balanced ventilation systems that can connect directly to your HVAC system's central blower to help distribute fresh air through the home's existing duct work.

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