Almost all bathrooms have them, but not everyone understands their purpose, or even how best to use them. Bathroom fans have an important job to do, but it’s necessary to use them correctly. Read on to get to know more about this often underutilized device.
A bathroom fan works to remove the warm, moist air from inside the bathroom. The air is drawn up, thorough the fan and vented out through the roof of the house.
Moisture can lead to mold, which is why a bathroom fan needs to be used. Moisture can also cause damage to the wood in a bathroom. If you’re not sure if a bathroom fan is doing its job, take a quick smell test. If the bathroom smells musty, then you are not running your bathroom fan often enough, or it’s not working properly.
Types of Fans
The larger the bathroom, the larger the fan should be. If you are doing any renovations to your bathroom, be sure to include the fan in your design. If you plan on knocking down any walls, the square footage of the room will increase, and the fan’s capacity may need to be upgraded.
The rule of thumb is that for every square foot of area in a bathroom, the fan should be able to provide one cubic feet per minute (CFM) of air movement. However, if your room is over 100 square feet in size, then you also need to add in an extra 50 CFM for the shower, bathtub, and toilet. As well, if you have a jetted jacuzzi tub, then add an extra 100 CFM.
All new houses will have bathroom fans installed. But the requirements for those bathrooms, as well as the technology, is constantly chancing. If you are in an older home, add a new bathroom fan to the list of house upgrades. Generally, look into replacing your bathroom fan every 10 to 15 years. This will ensure that if there are any new building codes, or any new technical efficiencies, that you are able to take advantage of them.
A bathroom fan will do its job if you run it the correct amount of time. The standard time is 20 minutes after each time you run a bath or shower. If you find it hard to remember to turn off your fan, or feel like you’re not running it long enough, then look for timer options. Most newer models will come with a timer. Some more high-tech models also come with a humidity sensor. This is even better as you can program the bathroom fan to turn off once the room reaches a certain humidity level.