A Closer Look At Whole-House Fans

August 5, 2019

Whole-House Fans in Denver and BoulderThere are plenty of reasons why homeowners in the Denver-Boulder area might consider having a whole-house fan installed to supplement an existing cooling system – or to serve as a stand-alone system to cool down the house at night during the summertime. Let’s take a closer look.

What is a Whole-House Fan, and What Does It Do?

A whole-house fan is a relatively large fan, typically installed in the attic space above the living area. It does its job by exhausting the hot air in your home to the outdoors while drawing cooler outside air into the house through open windows and/or doors. In order for a whole-house fan to effectively cool down your home, outside temperatures must be cooler than indoors – or little will be accomplished other than moving warm air around and spinning the electric meter.

During cool evenings, nights and mornings throughout the spring, summer, and fall, a whole-house fan owner can experience great comfort levels from their fan, allowing it to take the place of an AC system during those times of day – a nice savings on electrical bills, while also bringing fresh air into the house. During daily operation, before outside temperatures climb as the sun gets higher in the sky, the whole-house fan is turned off to prevent pulling hot air into the home. Later in the day, after the sun goes down and temperatures start dropping, the fan can then resume effective operation.

The whole-house fan is typically installed above the floor of the home’s attic space and is connected to a louver in the ceiling of the living area, below. The quietest models employ insulated ducting in between the fan and the louver, greatly minimizing operating sounds levels in the living area. The noisy, clunky old attic fans that many of us recall from our youth, have become a distant memory.

How Whole House Fan WorksBecause warm household air is pulled into the attic during fan operation, it is crucial that the attic possess proper ventilation to the outdoors, or the hot indoor air will hit a log jam in the attic – instead of reaching the intended destination outside your home.

The Benefits of a Whole-House Fan

Whole-house fans can benefit you and your home in a variety of ways. Here are some highlights that might apply to your circumstances:

  • Extend the life of an existing AC system when you use the whole-house fan instead of the air conditioner. Decreased AC usage translates to longer system life and greater value from your cooling investment.
  • Lower electrical bills for cooling your home, whenever conditions allow you to use the whole-house fan instead of the air conditioner.
  • If there’s nobody at home consistently during summertime days, you can try using a whole-house fan as your primary ‘cooling’ system after you arrive back home – but don’t expect great results if outdoor temperatures are near the 80s or higher.
  • When employed as a primary cooling system, installation and operating costs are significantly lower than central or ductless AC. Compared to a professionally installed central evaporative cooler, installed costs for whole-house fans are also considerably lower. But then, as we’ve alluded to, this is not an apples-to-apples product comparison.
  • For many people, the fresh air brought into their homes by a whole-house fan is a desirable bonus feature. For summertime allergy sufferers, however, a whole-house fan is not a good idea.

Does a whole-house fan make sense for my home?


Other Household Fans To Think About

From small, desk-top models and large portable oscillating fans (see your local home improvement store, or online), to attic, bathroom, and kitchen exhaust fans, Casablanca-style ceiling fans for rooms all around your home – and even ‘high-tech’ heat recovery ventilators – a wide variety of specialized fans can help you solve many household issues big and small. Increase comfort levels, improve your IAQ, and run your home more efficiently with a well-chosen new fan for your home. If you’d like more information, or need expert assistance with a current fan need, our team at Save Home Heat Company would be glad to help out.

Consult The Experts

If you’re thinking of having a whole-house fan installed in your home, Save Home Heat Company’s electrical department can provide expert assistance. We proudly install QuietCool brand whole-house fans, for their high level of craftsmanship and reliable, quality products. Our licensed Master Electrician would be glad to discuss your project, answer all of your questions, and provide a free estimate for installing a whole-house fan or any other fan products that fall under the Save Home Heat umbrella. As always, providing you with ample information in a low pressure fashion, so that you can make educated decisions, is how we do business.

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Master Electrician in Denver-Boulder

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