U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Green Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-08-2008, 03:02 PM
 
3,627 posts, read 12,790,488 times
Reputation: 2695

Advertisements

Anybody done this?

I certainly grew up without A/C and we used fans at night and closed the windows during the day and it was all pretty good.

But newer homes - only have ridge vent and loose fill insulation in the attics - could this still work or will an attic-type fan not work well in the more common soffit/ridge vent roofing systems we have?

We could do window fans and cross ventilate but I really like the attic/whole house fan idea -

Another concern would be that night is typically more humid which may present other problems in today's tighter homes.

What are folks doing in that regard?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-09-2008, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Pinal County, Arizona
25,107 posts, read 35,148,097 times
Reputation: 4899
Quote:
Originally Posted by grannynancy View Post
Anybody done this?

I certainly grew up without A/C and we used fans at night and closed the windows during the day and it was all pretty good.

But newer homes - only have ridge vent and loose fill insulation in the attics - could this still work or will an attic-type fan not work well in the more common soffit/ridge vent roofing systems we have?

We could do window fans and cross ventilate but I really like the attic/whole house fan idea -

Another concern would be that night is typically more humid which may present other problems in today's tighter homes.

What are folks doing in that regard?
In the desert southwest, what you describe it totally impractical
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-10-2008, 01:18 AM
 
Location: North Pole Alaska
886 posts, read 4,761,825 times
Reputation: 807
I also grew up with out A/C and tried using fans when I bought my new house even though it had a/c and found that my electric bill was less with the a/c on.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-12-2008, 06:46 PM
 
Location: a primitive state
9,846 posts, read 20,099,028 times
Reputation: 12315
Are you talking about installing an attic fan that sucks the warm air out of the house at night and draws the cool air in through the windows? I remember those from my grandmother's house and even helped a friend install one in his home about 10-15 years ago. (his house was 80 yrs. old, though)

I'm not sure where to buy one - you'll have to search online. They often fit in the space where the drop-down stair to the attic goes, or you can have a new hole cut in the ceiling of a centrally located hallway. You might have to increase the ventilation capacity of your attic by adding more soffit or gable end vents if possible. Best thing to do would be to find a cooperative air conditioning professional who could measure the potential outflow of air from your vents.

I'm not sure the insulation would be disturbed if the system was installed correctly. The air would go straight up.

The only downside I know of is that your house will get dustier.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-14-2008, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Pocono Mts.
9,483 posts, read 10,930,462 times
Reputation: 11390
AirScape — Whole House Fans (http://www.airscapefans.com/collections/whole-house-fans - broken link)

A neighbor of mine has one...and I like how fast her home cooled...but her model was noisy. She does not complain of increased dust.

The above link says it is a quiet fan.

Whole House Fan Installation Tips

If your home is more humid at night..you can run a dehumidifier.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-14-2008, 10:00 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 32,172,038 times
Reputation: 3392
I have one in an older home, but maybe I can give insight into some of your questions.

The home is from the '40's and the fan was installed at some later time (50's? 60's?). As Ellie said, the fan was installed in the hallway ceiling, not far from the attic entry. This is the metal louvered type - you hit the switch, the louvers open and the fan goes on.

The attic insulation is original, as far as I can tell, and it's some kind of loose cellulose material. The insulation is undisturbed by the fan action, so no worries there for you, I'd think.

The ridge vent is more than adequate for the pull of the fan, and it's a ridge vent that's not even as large as the ones they put on modern homes now (this is a little bungalow though ). I'd expect your modern home roof ridge should be fine for an average attic fan. The fan manufacturer should be able to determine that for sure.

Our climate here in Florida is hot and humid and the attic fan works as it should for decades now. I suppose your concern was trapping humid air in your attic by using the fan? That hasn't happened here, no trapped moisture.

Hope that helps .
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-17-2008, 03:12 PM
 
622 posts, read 2,894,909 times
Reputation: 303
You may want to look at an ERV (Energy Recovery Ventilator) It may work for you. A tighter home is when it works best. RenewAire Energy Recovery Ventilation <--- This is a very efficient brand and one of the lower priced ones. Very good bang for the buck.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-18-2008, 01:44 PM
 
Location: Lafayette, Louisiana
14,095 posts, read 23,636,684 times
Reputation: 7981
It all depends on the climate where you're located and how tight is your home's insulation. Modern homes are insulated tighter than older homes with central AC in mind. As tight as they are, if you open windows and try to circulate air with fans through the house then you'll actually be increasing the temperature and using more energy because of the refrigerator. One thing you could look into is a solar powered attic fan that runs on a thermostatic switch.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-20-2008, 11:45 PM
 
812 posts, read 3,578,582 times
Reputation: 370
It can work very well depending on your location. In the Sacramento area where my parents live, it is extremely commonplace to have in addition to AC, since it is dry, triple digits common in the summer, and nights sometimes cool off reasonably well (sometimes). The average house fan procedure in Sacramento works like this: Wake up, run the house fan, shut down the house once it starts warming up and keep it shut until the heat of the afternoon, when you run the AC for a little bit to keep your house reasonable, and as soon as possible, open the house back up and run the fan late into the night.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-21-2008, 02:45 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,408 posts, read 39,758,015 times
Reputation: 23433
I have added the Whole House fan to many different homes, including new homes.

for noise reduction I will frequently put them in an attached garage, and open the door when I want to use it. I have also placed them in closets in back bedrooms.

I don't notice any additional dust, as I use them in the evening, and it is not too dusty (airborne) then. I will time the fan to come on when the outdoor sprinklers are running on the cool side of the house. It drops the temp a lot. I run it again at 5-7 AM to 'pre-cool' for the day.

I live in a moderate climate with 50F nights in the summer

In the future... I will have a 'cool tube' as intake air for the Whole House Fan
cool tube = a buried tube ~ 50-100' long to get cool air from convention.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Green Living
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top