A Whole House Fan. Cool!!
If you want to save money during hot weather and still keep your cool, consider doing things that help your air conditioner. A few ideas in that area would include putting the solar film on the windows, adding blinds or shades, or installing a whole house fan. If your home builds up heat inside during the day, a whole house fan might be just the ticket for you. It works in conjunction with your current system, improves performance with little cost of operation, and can be installed in just a few hours.
A whole house fan is one of the best supplemental systems available. If you own an apartment complex or rental homes, consider installing fans because they might be a real money saver for you.
How Whole House Fans Work
This is an image of a common type of whole house fan although many other styles and models are available. Consider a typical 1600 sq foot two-story home with an attic, in which the upper floor gets very warm in the afternoon, and then remains too hot to sleep at night.
If this pictured fan were used, it would be installed as shown in the hall ceiling on the second floor, with the paint-able louvers underneath to hide the fan blades. Most fans are connected to the electrical system through an On-Off switch,
When a whole house fan comes on, the louvers open and the fan quickly pushes hot second-floor air up into the attic. From there, the heated air can escape through attic vents or will be pushed out by an attic fan (see next week’s blog.) The fan movement causes cooler inside air from the first floor to rise to the second floor and also causes cooler outside air to be drawn in through first-floor windows. All of the hot air is now in the attic away from occupants, and both floors contain cooler air. As the heated air escapes from the attic that space is cooled, meaning that a sun-heated roof or wall will be less noticeable to occupants.
Hot air that is trapped in a house requires a long time to cool down and that can put quite a load on the air conditioning system. Whole house fans can get rid of the heat quickly. By turning on the whole house fan in the cool morning hours, you can bring in comfortable air, then close up the house to avoid heat gain. Turn the fan on again in the evening to release the heat that has built up all day, and you and the family will have a more comfortable temperature for sleeping all night.
Advantages of Whole House Fans
You will save money by running the fan because it costs only about one-tenth of the cost of air conditioning. The fans typically draw 400 to 600 watts of electricity, so they run for only a few cents per hour.
In milder climates, or for homes protected by shade trees, a whole-house fan can reduce or eliminate the need for central air conditioning. This can allow you to focus resources on a more efficient heating system for your home, such as radiant flooring.
Even in homes exposed to full sun that suffer from a great deal of heat buildup, a whole-house fan can greatly reduce the stress and shorten the run time of the current air conditioning system. Today’s models give you lots of options in sizes, types of power, and noise reduction, including solar-powered and temperature-controlled fans.
This is a great home improvement project, and can save you money and stress over time, as well as helping you and your family to keep you cool!