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10.10.2014

The most common kind of residential ventilation fan is one used to provide fresh air for building occupants. A powered attic ventilator has a different purpose: it is designed to lower the temperature of an attic by exhausting air from the attic and replacing attic air with outdoor air. Whole-house fans are used to cool a house at night, when the heat of the day has passed and the outdoor temperature has dropped enough to feel comfortable. The main advantage of using a whole-house fan instead of an air conditioner is to save energy. In most cases, a whole-house fan is mounted in the attic floor, above a rectangular grille in the ceiling of a central hallway. Since a whole-house fan blows all of the hot air from the home into the attic, the fan won’t work effectively unless the attic has large openings to exhaust the hot air. Here’s the rule of thumb: you need one square foot of net free vent area for every 750 cfm of fan capacity. Manufacturers of ridge vents and soffit vents provide information on the net free area of ventilation per linear foot of their products; for example, this page from the Air Vent website lists different ridge vent products that provide between 9 and 18 square inches of net free area per linear foot of product. If you live in the right climate, whole-house fans are a great way to keep your house cool. However, even if you need to seal up your house and turn on your air conditioner during the hottest months of summer, a whole-house fan may be useful during the spring and fall seasons, when nights are cool but days remain hot. They don’t make sense for homes in neighborhoods where security concerns prevent homeowners from leaving their windows open.
Because they depressurize a home, whole-house fans can cause atmospherically vented appliances located inside a home — for example, a gas-fired water heater — to backdraft. Whole-house fans represent a big hole in your ceiling — a hole that is likely to leak a lot of heat during the winter unless it is properly sealed.
One document posted online — “Whole-House Fan” — includes instructions for building a “box cover” for a whole-house fan. For a better approach, make a site-built cover as shown in the detail in GBA's CAD detail library. The second solution to the “big hole in the ceiling” problem: buy a whole-house fan from Tamarack. Tamarack Technologies of Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts, makes the best whole-house fans available.
Tamarack HV1600 has two speeds (1,150 cfm and 1,600 cfm) and draws 230 watts at high speed. Tamarack fans have lower cfm ratings than most other whole-house fans, but the low power ratings confer certain advantages. Of course, since these fans don’t move as much air as a fan rated at 4,000 cfm, you’ll have to run the fan for more hours to get the same cooling effect. Now that we’re done talking about whole-house fans — the “good” kind of attic fan — it’s time to address powered attic ventilators — the “bad” kind of attic fan. Powered attic ventilators are usually mounted on a sloped roof or the gable wall of an attic. Although the logic behind powered attic ventilators is compelling to many hot-climate homeowners, these devices can cause a host of problems. In many homes, powered attic ventilators pull conditioned air out of the home and into the attic through ceiling cracks.
As the cool air is being sucked out of the house through the ceiling, hot exterior air enters the house through other cracks to replace the exhausted air. Several studies show that even in a house with a tight ceiling, a powered attic ventilator uses more electricity than it saves. A more alarming problem: researchers in Florida and North Carolina have shown that powered attic ventilators can depressurize a house enough to cause water heaters to backdraft.
John Tooley of Natural Florida Retrofit and Bruce Davis of Alternative Energy Corporation’s Applied Building Science Center in North Carolina conducted a field study to investigate powered attic ventilator performance. One of the researchers working with Tooley and Davis was Arnie Katz, who wrote: “In most of the houses we’ve tested, the attic fans were drawing some of their air from the house, rather than from the outside.
Researchers at the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) have reached similar conclusions to those reached by Tooley, Davis, and Katz.
Researchers at FSEC looked into solar-powered attic ventilators, and noted that the devices could, in some circumstances, reduce the electricity used for air conditioning. My favorite quote on solar-powered attic fans comes from Arnie Katz, who wrote, “In my opinion, powered attic ventilators are generally not a good idea, whether they’re powered by nuclear electricity, burning water buffalo dung, landfill-generated methane gas, or directly by the sun…. If you do have ductwork or HVAC equipment in your attic, the designer and builder of your home made a major mistake.
Moving the insulation from your attic floor to the sloped roof assembly, creating an unvented conditioned attic. If you believe that your house has a hot ceiling during the summer, the solution is not a powered attic ventilator. Davis Energy Group of Davis, CA developed the Night Breeze system which does not require window opening to cool the house. The attic "coffin" you mention, which is used to air seal and insulate pull-down stairs, scuttle hole, or a whole house fan, is good in theory, but in practice, is cumbersome to install.
The NightBreeze has been around for a while; I first wrote an article about the product 8 years ago, for an article that appeared in the September 2004 issue of Energy Design Update. I'm constantly up against folks who sell or have bought powered attic ventilators for use in Florida.
Solar Attic Fans are easily managed and fixed and a great product for proper attic ventilation.
Standard asphalt shingle roofs is northern Vermont, where Martin Holladay lives, last 30 or more years, while roofs in south Texas last about 15 to 18 years. That 20,000 kWh would go a long way toward operating a pair of thermostatically controlled, powered attic ventilators (operated off the same thermostat) that had fans both blowing air into and out of the attic, through gable vents, with a balanced pressure so that air was not sucked through the ceiling of the house. I get the idea that people that suggest a hot attic with a well-insulated ceiling have never crawled around an attic in south Texas on a summer day trying to string a TV cable or electrical wiring. Since the desert southwest is prime territory for whole house fans and a common building style is flat roofs with either no attic space or very minimal, non-accessible attic space, what is an appropriate detail for installing a whole house fan?
Obviously, it depends on the average ambient temperature, humidity, and the nature of the attic.
My guess is that way more attention should be given to creating a flawless air seal around the cover than to adding a few more Rs to the R-value. To determine whether your argument has any merit, we need to look at each of these three assertions in turn. A better option would be the TC1000-H fan from Tamarack -- a model with an automatic insulated damper that prevents heat flow and air flow when the unit is not in use. Let's assume that the insulated box in the attic measures 40 inches by 40 inches, and it is 24 inches high.
Cold climates will have a higher ?T than I assumed, and warm climates will have a lower ?T than I assumed.
Thank you, Martin, for showing me how to do the heat-loss calculation, and providing an example.
Considering lower materials cost, easier fabrication, and simpler attachment and removal, I'm thinking that I would be very happy paying an extra $1-$6 per year to use an R-5 flat cover on the ceiling of the hallway.
Most whole-house fans require a rectangular opening that is at least 32" x 32", and often larger; some whole-house fans are 48 in. It is interesting that asphalt single warranties are based on having attic ventilation to code or the warranty is voided.
If your attic doesn't have any problems, I wouldn't worry about adding more attic ventilation.
It's very easy to write that better insulation, radiant barriers, and light-colored roofs are components of a superior solution. You have installed powered attic ventilators in two homes in recent years, so you obviously like them.
Even if your anecdotes are accurate in all details, and even if you have no financial interest in promoting powered attic ventilators, two anecdotes aren't convincing. You have described two buildings with "hot ceilings." I have no idea why anyone with a hot ceiling would think it was easier to install powered attic ventilators than a layer of cellulose insulation. Here at GBA, we strive to advise readers of the simplest and best solutions to common building problems.
Well, to me two anecdotes are more compelling than one article, no matter how many times it's been re-written. The most important variable, however, is the human beings involved and the particular situation they are dealing with.
Energy engineering is way more complicated than telling people that there is but one solution to a problem.
However, after having read the reports of researchers who have studied the issue and measured energy use in buildings with powered attic ventilators, I'm going to stick with the conclusions and advice of the researchers, even in the face of two anecdotes that buck the trend. I had hoped you would have done a little more research into other suppliers in order to offer a more unbiased view. Like so many other "plug in" solutions attic fans certainly have the potential to make things worse rather than better.
The primary reason attic fans are not helpful is that they can depresureize the attic and draw air out of the house.
The amount of air being drawn out of the house is a function of the pressure difference and size of the air leaks in the attic floor. If air leakage is minimized, and depressurization is controlled with either a balanced fan or adequate openings for incoming air then it seems reasonable that the amount of depressurization would minimal and the attic fan could be beneficial.
Arnie Katz's study concluded that (an undefined amount of?) depressurization was enough to increase cooling costs. If the house without AC running was closing the windows during the day to keep the house cooler, then any air being exhausted to the attic would be replaced by warmer outdoor air, but that warming of the house is tempered by a cooler ceiling.
You propose the question "who cares how hot the attic is if there is enough insulation in the attic floor?" Insulation can only slow and not stop the energy transfer. If you install a powered attic ventilator, there is one thing you can be sure of: your electricity bill will go up.
Just because insulation slows down heat transfer rather than stopping it, doesn't mean that insulation isn't the best (and most cost-effective) way to prevent hot attics from making homeowners uncomfortable.
You wrote, "Everything else being equal, any house would benefit from a cooler attic." That statement is only true during the summer. Yes, of course more insulation with no moving parts and year round benefit is the better option.
In a house with no ac running and the windows open there has to be some level of cooling benefit from lowering the attic temp with an attic fan. Of course if the attic fan isn't working correctly and is running all year long that would be a significant problem.
Also, living in West Texas (think El Paso or Lubbock) 'swamp coolers' work great for all but about 2 days a year. Ahh, the differences from living in the NE and the SW (and the South) is really different on how we live with our environment. We include tables of accident frequency by type or cause, and we discuss and illustrate many common building dangers such as stair falls, ladder safety, electrical and environmental hazards, animal hazards, even encounters with deranged armed occupants in buildings. But equally important as watching out for the obvious, is our approach to inspecting or working on or in buildings, mechanical systems, and the indoor environment.
These risks are of particular concern to the home inspector who may be exposed to more varied and extreme conditions than other visitors to a building or site.
The range of hazards faced by home inspectors in the course of examining buildings is considerable. Home inspectors and other professional building diagnosticians are expected to be observant and attentive to detail. Home inspectors and other building investigators and workers spend a lot of time on ladders.
We are more afraid of improbable hazards beyond our control (EMF) than we are of probable hazards over which we have control (smoking cigarettes). Even an apparently improbable event (being struck by lightning) deserves careful attention in some circumstances (you're on the golf course) if the cost of the occurrence is high (death). The attention we pay to various risks needs to be adjusted continuously as we move through a building from area to area (basement to roof) and topic to topic (plumbing to electrical).
Tune risk recognition to area and system: The home inspector's recognition of risks needs to attend the hazards peculiar to each building area and system. Educate to improve hazard recognition and to teach safe inspection procedures: The level of inspector technical education affects the inspector's ability to recognize hazards and to reduce accidents. Poisoning from improper doses of medication ranks third as the most prevalent type of home accidents.
Reducing slip, trip, and fall hazards for home inspectors is discussed within individual building area and hazard topics which follow. The author has consulted in depth concerning fall injuries and has performed case studies investigating stair and rail accident and injury lawsuits. Our photo (left) illustrates a serious safety hazard, especially for curious children: a laundry chute whose opening cover is in the floor of an upstairs hallway.
Watch out for breaking truss chord members when walking on roof truss bottom members covered by insulation. Shocks: electrical hazards (wires buried in insulation) watch out about grabbing wires, fans, wasps, other hazards when climbing into an unfamiliar attic.
Fear in crawl spaces: being startled while working in a confined space can itself lead to injury from a banged head, cuts, nail perforations, etc. Shock hazards in crawl spaces: Wet surfaces increase risk of shock hazards such as when opening electrical panels or touching improperly grounded wiring in basements and especially in crawl spaces. I encountered a crawl space with snakes here in AZ not a huge surprise but after I had to leave the crawl space rather rapidly, the home owners informed me that they had them put snakes in the crawl area to take care of a rat problem!!
New York City worker found dead in duct system after falling through a ceiling and remaining trapped over a weekend. Realtor instructs tenant to cut and remove harmless zip-cord wiring run in walls, tenant cuts, tenant is shocked, main building fuses blow, curls tenant's hair. Spring-loaded panel covers may permit bus assembly to move when cover or inner panel face is removed - arc explosion hazard. Rust on the electrical panel door may be subtle but could warn of very unsafe conditions inside. Sheet metal screws in the panel door may pierce live wires during electrical panel cover replacement.


Turning off breakers accidentally during panel cover removal can cause in-building catastrophes such as computer data loss or injury if medical equipment (a home dialysis machine) is in operation. Do not touch, grab, shake, disturb live wires unless specifically trained & equipped to do so [B. The chances are far greater for avid golfers who refuse to leave the golf course when a thunderstorm is approaching.
A safe location should be sought immediately whenever the sound of thunder follows lightning by less than 30 seconds. Detecting gas leaks, appliance safety controls, what to do when a leak is detected, when to shut down unsafe heating equipment. Masonry structures such as this carriage house in Saugerties, NY, can be very unstable and risk sudden even imminent sudden collapse, depending on just how it is damaged.
Broken bond courses in brick are a particular concern as are severely-bowed masonry block walls. The client moved into the new home, invited friends to celebrate, partied on the deck, and rode it to the ground as it collapsed. The author re-inspected the collapsed deck to photograph construction details that led to the structural failure of this component.
Bacterial (sewage) and fungal (mold) hazards for home inspectors may be present if there has been sewage backup. This home made septic tank next to the foundation and stairs had about 200 gallons capacity; a sump pump (foreground) was used to pump effluent to an uphill home-made drain field. A manual switch operated the pump; leaky piping sprayed septic-dyed effluent over certain bystanders during the inspection.
Falling-in the Septic Tank or Cesspool: Do not step on and fall into a septic tank or cesspool. Entering the Septic tank: Never go into a septic tank - on purpose or by accident unless specially trained and equipped.
Residential Septic Tank Sludge and Scum - what pathogens and contaminants do they contain?
Sink Holes, usually known ahead of time by area when based on geological conditions; others occur due to sudden subsidence following plumbing leaks or other site changes. Trace actual building leaks by visible stains or by construction details known to make leaks or moisture problems likely. Fiberglass insulation exposed to wet basements, crawl spaces, attics, is often a significant but invisible problem mold reservoir. Mold growth in building interiors is a leak or water indicator that is important in diagnosing a wide range of building concerns besides just possible mold hazards. Touching moldy or sewage-contaminated surfaces: Wash hands after touching dirty or moldy surfaces, never ever put a moldy finger into your eye (DF received two reports of lost eyes due to fungal infections) Experts wear eye protection. Beware of walking or crawling in sewage or areas of previous sewage backups and floods; (Wear washable boots or disposable boot covers).
Reactions: Pay attention to physical responses in yourself and your clients when entering building areas but do not assume that no response means no hazard. Home Owner Threatens Dog: Home owner threatens inspector (and inspector's dog) with pistol. Ask that dogs be off premises or confined in areas not to be entered during the inspection. The author's mother, at age 91, fell down carpeted stairs in her home in Boca Raton, Florida.
Mom's injuries included three broken ribs, an elbow so severely broken that an elbow replacement was required, and multiple lacerations to her head. The author's neighbor, at age 85, made a wrong turn in an upstairs hallway after using the bathroom late at night.
Falls like these are so severe that they can materially affect the length and quality of life for the elderly. Professional home inspectors can provide an economical survey that addresses home safety and more broadly, a home inspector can identify and help prioritize repairs necessary to preserve the building as well as to keep it functioning safely. These building professionals will consider indirect safety hazards and latent safety hazards affecting all building occupants and that are usually unfamiliar to other safety consultants who may not be building experts. This item will be shipped through the Global Shipping Program and includes international tracking. Will usually ship within 4 business days of receiving cleared payment - opens in a new window or tab. By submitting your bid, you are committing to buy this item from the seller if you are the winning bidder. By clicking Confirm, you commit to buy this item from the seller if you are the winning bidder. By clicking Confirm, you are committing to buy this item from the seller if you are the winning bidder and have read and agree to the Global Shipping Program terms and conditions - opens in a new window or tab. Your bid is the same as or more than the Buy It Now price.You can save time and money by buying it now.
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Items can be returned for refund, less actual shipping cost, within 20 days after receiving items. THE #1 Garage Fan and Attic Cooler in the USA for 10 Years!  FREE SHIPPING ON SELECT GARAGE FANS FOR A LIMITED TIME – ORDER NOW AND SAVE!!
As a building inspector I was constantly in hot garages and attics and 10 Years ago I set out to come up with a way to cool hot garages here in Phoenix.
The GF-14 Garage fan and attic cooler moves air into a typical attic relative to the house forcing the super-heated attic air out the attic vents, which may include gable vents, ridge vents, dormer vents, whirley vents, etc.
2 Intake Grills, mounting brackets, installation screws, everything is included for installation. We’re in Arizona, and typically even in the evening, the garage is still incredibly hot. I am extremely happy with your set up and as it starts getting hot, my neighbors will be installing your fan. Frankly, it’s a bit late in the season here in Florida to realize any obvious change in garage temperature, but a good, steady air flow tells me that I can look forward to a cooler garage when the weather gets balmy. I also ordered the optional aluminum grilles for the garage door and have enclosed pictures to show how they look (Great!).
My husband says the installation was relatively easy to cut the vents into the garage door and the ceiling dry wall. Ray, I would like for you to know that the GF-14 Garage Fan you installed has worked tirelessly and moved the air in the garage into the attic area and out the vents in the roof just as you stated it would.
Usually located in the ceiling of an interior hallway, a whole house fan is a simple and inexpensive resolution of cooling a house. This Belt Drive Whole House Fan With Automatic ShutterBelt drive whole house fan features 2-speed, thermally protected PSC motor for up to 1,800 square feet on one story. Featuring a belt drive, this Master Flow 6,000 CFM Power Whole-House Fan is able to reduce the hot air in your house efficiently with less motor noise and vibration.
This entry was posted in Tower Fans and tagged Belt Drive Fan, Belt Drive Whole House Fan, Best Belt Drive Whole House Fan on August 23, 2013 by longer. 5 Best Digital Tire Pressure Gauge – For maximized fuel efficiency, increased safety and comfort.
Ceiling fans add style and a cheap cooling solution for any room in your home, have us install one today!
Unlike a ventilation fan, a whole-house fan — an attic-mounted fan that exhausts air from a home at night — is designed to cool a house (that is, to lower the indoor temperature).
A whole-house fan usually draws between 200 and 700 watts — about 10% to 15% of the power drawn by a central air conditioner (2,000 to 5,000 watts).
It makes no sense to introduce lots of (potentially humid) exterior air into a house at night if you intend to turn on an air conditioner the next day. Once the outdoor temperature cools down — usually in the evening or early morning — the homeowner opens a few downstairs windows, closes the fireplace damper, and turns on the fan. Since whole-house fans are relatively powerful — they are usually rated between 2,000 cfm and 6,000 cfm — they quickly exhaust the hot indoor air, allowing cooler outdoor air to enter through the downstairs windows. Most old-fashioned whole-house fans require more attic venting than the minimum amount required by the building code — anything from a little more to about twice as much, depending on the size of the fan. The vent area can be made up of a combination of soffit vents, ridge vents, and gable vents. The traditional recommendation is to choose a fan that can move between 15 and 20 air changes per hour (achACH stands for Air Changes per Hour.
If you live somewhere where the temperature stays in the 80s all night long, a whole-house fan won’t help you much. However, newer models of whole-house fans — especially the Tamarack HV1000 — are quieter than traditional whole-house fans with higher cfm ratings. Unfortunately, the document suggests that it’s acceptable to build a cover insulated only to R-5. Or you can follow the advice given by Erik North in his blog on building a “coffin” for insulation pull-down attic stairs. Since Tamarack fans include motorized doors insulated to R-38 or R-50, you won’t have to climb up into your attic twice a year to wrestle with an insulated box if you install a Tamarack fan. Most powered attic ventilators are controlled by a thermostat so that they turn on when the attic gets hot. The installers of powered attic ventilators hope that the exhausted air will be replaced by outdoor air. Installers evidently hope that a powered attic ventilator will save more energy that the electricity required to run the fan. Here’s the basic problem: a powered attic ventilator will depressurize your attic, and it’s hard to predict where the makeup air will come from. The net result: the air conditioner has work harder than ever as it struggles to cool all that entering outdoor air. Since backdrafting sometimes introduces carbon monoxide into a home, the phenomenon can be dangerous. According to an article published in Home Energy magazine, “As a result of this research, Davis said that he wouldn’t recommend the use of powered attic ventilators.
In other words, they are cooling the attic by drawing air-conditioned air out of your house and into the attic. In an FSEC publication called “Fans to Reduce Cooling Costs in the Southeast,” researcher Subrato Chandra wrote, “Data measured at FSEC and elsewhere show that attics with nominal natural ventilation and R-19 ceiling insulation do not need powered vent fans. In hopes of answering critics who complain that these fans use more electricity than they save, the industry has developed powered attic ventilators equipped with small photovoltaic panels. In their report, Performance Assessment of Photovoltaic Attic Ventilator Fans, however, the researchers concluded, “Based on the matching period analysis, estimation of annual space cooling savings are on the order of 460 kWh. The solution is to seal any air leaks in your ceiling and to add more insulation to your attic floor. The thermostat-like control unit also regulates the operation of the air conditioner, if any.
When the control predicts relatively mild weather, the ventilating blower will run at a lower speed than when hotter weather is predicted.
Most who have them "get it" when I explain that conditioned air is pulled up out of every ceiling penetration. The best way to lower the temperature of asphalt shingles is with a powered attic ventilator. The best way to lower asphalt shingle temperatures is to choose white-colored shingles over black shingles.
You can adjust the assumptions to fit your own case and run your own calculations if you want. But as long as you're making a cover, why not use at least 2-inch-thick rigid foam instead of 1-inch-thick foam? I've recorded temperatures up to 180 deg F on back side of asphalt shingles in the California summer sunshine and attic temperatures of 160 deg F.
I've measured attic temperatures with various types and amounts of attic venting and there is really little effect that can be detected with venting on attic temperature. Of course if you want to make lemonade out of that lemon, use the attic heat to preheat water and call your roof a solar collector. In the summer, the upstairs bedrooms are unbearably hot, due to the ceiling radiating attic heat. Needless to say, there are all kinds of reasons that electric bills fluctuate from one month to the next; one of the biggest reasons (when it comes to air conditioning) is variations in weather. I'd like to repeat my advice: if you have a hot ceiling, install more insulation on your attic floor. I have been a professional energy engineer for 2 decades; I understand that there are many variables that account for enrgy use.
In both of my anecdotes, the human beings felt that the cost in money, time, work, and hassle would not have sufficient return in comfort. As a curious professional, I was willing to risk the investment to see for myself what effects are. I certainly appreciate the information, as I appreciate all information provided by GBA readers. Of course, a fan cannot cool your garage unless the outdoor air temperature is lower than the indoor air temperature. Tamarack is a fine company with leading edge insulation technology but you do your readers a disservice by inserting your opinion that they "make the best whole-house fans available". The problem is that in most cases, there is no one available to accurately make that determination. Many houses have significant leaks in the air barrier(attic floor) and it would be easy for the attic fan to draw a significant amount of air from the house.
In an attic with gable vents, soffit vents, and ridge venting, I suspect that the attic fan would not create a significant pressure difference and the air leakage from the house is probably small. Regardless of what the insulation level is, there will be some level of energy transfer from the warmer attic to the cooler house. I know of two houses using them and the owners are certain that they make a large difference in comfort.


Believe it or not, many homeowners with powered attic ventilators leave them running all year long, because they forget to turn them off or the thermostat breaks. In those cases the options are to "sweat it out", cool the poorly insulated house with a large AC system, or try to limit the heat gain to reduce the temperature in the house. The same can be said for any mechanical equipment in the house that is not operating correctly. Our photographs (above and left) illustrate some of the crazy things people do to gain ladder access to areas of buildings. Another home inspector was badly injured when an attic fold-down stair fell out of its opening as the inspector was climbing it. An aggressive tenant threatened two elderly inspection clients with a rifle and then showered them with stones. Training in proper inspection procedures and proper equipment use address this cause of accidents.
Further, the probability of an event (being struck by lightning) varies enormously with circumstances (you're indoors). Scalds from hot water are also a frequent source of injury, especially in bathtubs and showers. A home inspector reported being badly shocked by contacting a loose electrical wire while crawling in a very tight crawl area.
But this leads to a useful lesson for Arizona home inspectors: ask all parties if they know of any "proactive measures for rodent control " that have been applied to the space below the building before you enter such an area. There may also be carbon monoxide or other asphyxiation hazards from equipment malfunctions. Discouraged about other inspection defects, SV's realtor kicked the brick foundation asserting that at least the foundation was salvageable. Wearing open-heeled slippers with smooth soles, carrying an armload of laundry with both arms full, and stepping down stairs that were poorly designed with narrow treads and thick soft nosed carpeting, she lost a slipper and fell.
Yet the hazards involved could be easily spotted by an experienced home inspector or home safety inspector. Packaging should be the same as what is found in a retail store, unless the item is handmade or was packaged by the manufacturer in non-retail packaging, such as an unprinted box or plastic bag.
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The GF-14 Garage Fan and Attic Cooler is designed to mount in the ceiling of the garage, venting to the attic. After several prototypes I finally perfected a garage fan that would help people all over the USA keep their garages up to 20 degrees cooler or closer to ambient temperature. An adjustable thermostat allows homeowners to decide when the GF-14 Series should activate for their particular climate or season. Had to call customer service during the install and they were very helpful and extremely courteous. It brings cooler air into a stuffy and hot garage making it much more bearable to work in on weekends which is when I tinker around out there. They came when promised, and installed the product as well as garage door installation within a couple of hours or so. Compared to direct-drive whole house fans, belt-driven models are quieter and more efficient, making them ideal for medium and larger homes. The motor is mounted on struts above housing, so it features a quieter operation than direct-drive units. Great for 1200 to 2000 square foot attics, this unit requires minimum 8 square feet of net free air exhaust vent area.
In the late evening or early morning, the fan is turned on to exhaust hot air from the house.
Balanced ventilation system in which most of the heat from outgoing exhaust air is transferred to incoming fresh air via an air-to-air heat exchanger; a similar device, an energy-recovery ventilator, also transfers water vapor. If evenings are cool enough, it’s fairly easy to lower the temperature of your home and your furniture with a whole-house fan — sometimes in less than an hour. If you're using your air conditioner, keep your windows closed, 24 hours a day, so that the air conditioner isn't faced with an increased latent loadCooling load that results when moisture in the air changes from a vapor to a liquid (condensation). If the vent has insect screening, remember to make the opening 50% larger than the rule of thumb dictates. But the best way to avoid backdrafting problems in a house with a whole-house fan is to make sure that the house doesn’t have any atmospherically vented combustion appliances.
The main disadvantage of this solution is that you have to climb up into the attic twice a year to install it and remove it.
Moreover, since a Tamarack fan blows a smaller volume of air than the typical whole-house fan, it usually doesn’t require any extra vents in your attic.
They also hope that the outdoor air will be cooler than the exhausted air, and that the effect of operating the fan will be to lower the attic temperature.
Although the “smart arrows” in the sales brochures shows outdoor air entering the attic through the soffit vents, that’s not what usually happens. Air conditioning the attic is not recommended by anyone I know as an effective strategy for reducing your bills. Such fans cost more to operate than they save in reduced cooling costs, so they are not recommended.” Of course, if your ceiling insulation is deeper than R-19 — as it should be — there’s even less reason to worry about your attic temperatures. The biggest potential problem, says Rose, is that power venting can cause a negative pressure in the attic.
In addition to providing nighttime ventilation cooling, the NightBreeze system provides year-‘round whole-house ventilation.
Your estimate of 15 to 18 years is much closer to the average here (as it appears to be in Texas). No other factor, including attic ventilation, plays as much of a role as do color and orientation. However, if you really care about shingle temperatures, the best solution is clear: choose white shingles! Click here to see a website with many inexpensive models of whole-house exhaust fans for flat roofs.
In the real world, comfort, low first cost, and immediate gratification take precedence over theory and lab results. The bedrooms can be filled with cool air, yet the hot ceiling makes them feel like being inside a broiler. But in the real world, we look for practical solutions that people will actually implement. Don't install a powered attic ventilator, since these devices, on average, use more electricity than they save. If the attic fans didn't do the trick, then I'd move on to the next solution and be out only $100. And I accept your assertion that you have no financial interest in promoting powered attic ventilators. If you have radiant barrier sheathing, the temperature difference between the two spaces won't be very great, and probably won't be enough to justify the use of the fan.
As a general rule unless a homeowner has a highly qualified person to evaluate their house, I think its safe to say that attic fans should be avoided. If a house has been air sealed by someone with an understanding of the air leakage, then it would seem that the depressurization would be minimal and the attic fan could then be beneficial. In a house not running an ac system any air being drawn from the house is being replaced by outdoor air.
This increase in your electric bill is especially guaranteed in homes without AC (because there is no possibility that running the fan might decrease electricity devoted to AC).
If a $100 attic fan (which consumes little electricity compared with an AC unit and contains far less embodied energy) can be part of a plan to reduce heat gain there may be a significant energy and environmental benefit compared to the AC option.
If the attic fan keeps the house cool enough so that the owners leave the AC off, there is almost certainly an energy benefit. An electrical inspector was killed by an electrical arc explosion while removing the cover of an electrical panel. But spiders, snakes, rodents, and in one report, a dead human body can all be suddenly frightening, inviting injury from sudden movement. The snake handlers had to be called out and then the crawl space was ready to be inspected! Repeated exposure to mold or other allergens can lead to increased sensitization, adult-onset asthma (DF), and even sudden and severe asthmatic attacks and anaphylactic shock (hearing booth client). If you reside in an EU member state besides UK, import VAT on this purchase is not recoverable.
Please contact us for return authorization, and items must be returned within 14 days after RMA# is given out.
The GF-14 Garage Fan will cool the garage as much as 20 degrees and help cool the attic as much as 40 degrees or bring it closer to ambient temperature. Now after 10 years the GF 14 Garage Fan and Attic Cooler is the number one garage fan in the USA with over 7000 GF-14 Garage Fans installed.   The GF-14 Garage Fan and Attic Cooler is designed to mount in the ceiling of the garage, venting to the attic and cooing your attic up to 40 degrees or closer to ambient temperature.
We would have to say that we are totally impressed when the crew showed up on time in uniforms and put the GF-14 fan in with absolutely no clean up.
We know that if we can get the attic cooler perhaps we can save some money on our high air conditioning bills. The fan came via UPS within about a week and I installed it that following Saturday in our fairly new home with a 3 car garage.
Pick one of these highly efficient belt drive whole house fans to provide excellent ventilation and lower indoor temperatures. Most people who have whole-house fans keep their windows closed from early morning until evening, so that the cool air inside the house doesn’t escape.
ACH is often expressed as ACH50, which is the air changes per hour when the house is depressurized to -50 pascals during a blower door test.
In our case it was a louvered opening about 30in square that we covered with a plywood piece every September or the attic would get really cold. In the two cases, I've described, the most practical (by far) solution was contrary to the conventional wisdom.
The results of my experiments, so far, differ from this article and all the other ones that say the same thing. If the windows are open in the house there is no "cooling penality" to having some air exhausted from through the attic.
But research has shown that, even in a house with AC, powered attic ventilators increase homeowners' electricity bills -- they don't lower them. If you are worried that your ceiling is still warm, the solution is simple: pile on a little more insulation. A plumber was killed while leaning over a water pressure tank that, lacking a pressure relief valve, exploded. Returned items must be in their original packaging, never used, and in perfect brand new condition. In hot climates, the function is reversed so that the cooler inside air reduces the temperature of the incoming hot air. The term ACHn or NACH refers to "natural" air changes per hour, meaning the rate of air leakage without blower door pressurization or depressurization.
The HV1000 requires a minimum of 3 square feet of net free vent area, and the HV1600 requires a minimum of 5 square feet. In one house we tested, we measured substantial levels of carbon monoxide (CO) in the daughter’s bedroom in the basement. While the correlation between shingle temperature and longevity has not yet been definitively shown, it remains true that anyone concerned about elevated shingle temperatures should simply choose white shingles. MIL was able to turn her thermostat up a few degrees, thereby saving energy and increasing comfort. I report my findings not to argue or to be off-handedly accused of having financial interest, but to advance our understanding and knowledge. We now offer many types of properly-sized intake air vents are mounted in the garage door or wall  taking in outside ambient air in and cooling the garage and attic.
Once I wired it to the back of garage door opener outlet and turned on the power it started right up.
The air is then pushed into the attic, which pushes the hot air in the attic outside through the gable vents. We would be happy to have you use us as a reference and we surely would recommend your product to our friends and family who suffers from a HOT GARAGE. I love the way they bring in extra light and air into the garage, with or without the fan running. The part of a balanced ventilation system that captures water vapor and heat from one airstream to condition another.
If you’re aiming for 15 ach, that means you need to divide your home’s volume by 4 to obtain the cfm rating of your fan. By the time I go to bed, the attic is cooler than the inside of my house, so it is drawing heat out.
In cold climates, water vapor captured from the outgoing airstream by ERVs can humidify incoming air. If your ceiling height is between 8 and 9 feet, just multiply the floor area of your house by 3 to obtain the cfm rating of your fan. I have noticed with the GF-14 that the garage is much more comfortable by keeping a steady flow of air through it. I have enclosed pictures of the vents installed and air flow, white paper, that is drawn into the garage with fan running. In hot-humid climates, ERVs can help maintain (but not reduce) the interior relative humidity as outside air is conditioned by the ERV.), as well as some types of bathroom exhaust fans.
When I come home from work after driving some 30 miles and pull into the garage I know that the GF-14 Garage Fan is helping cool down my car rather than just building up more heat in my garage.



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