Roof fan vents help maintain a healthy, comfortable home temperature and drain away odors, pollen, and other allergens from the air in your home.
However, not all homes have the exact needs regarding ventilation. For example, a single fan in an open attic may be enough for one house but not another with more occupants, pets, or larger air space.
It’s easy to see why a roof fan ventilation system adds to your home’s comfort level. This guide will help you understand why you should consider roof fan ventilation in your home, what indoor conditions it can help maintain, and where to find the best vents at a reasonable cost.
So, let’s investigate!
Benefits of Roof Fan Ventilation
The benefits of roof fan ventilation include reduced energy costs and better indoor air quality. Roof fan ventilation also prevents destructive ice dams or icicles from forming around your roof’s edges and leads to more efficient indoor temperature regulation.
If you think about it, your house plays a significant role in global air pollution, leading to some concerning negative consequences, including death due to polluted air.
Every year, we produce an estimated 7.5 tons (6,803.89 kg) of carbon dioxide (CO2) by burning fossil fuels while cooking, heating, and burning solid wood stoves in unvented spaces. While the amount of pollution generated by US households and worldwide is already astronomical, things can get much worse in a poorly-ventilated home.
Ventilating your home can reduce the amount of polluted air and minimize the risk of respiratory issues arising from allergies and other particles. Better ventilation helps keep your home free from pollution, promoting a clean and comfortable environment.
By installing a roof fan, you’re improving indoor airflow, which helps make your house a more comfortable space.
Here are some other benefits of installing roof fan ventilation systems in your home:
Energy Bill Reduction
Roof fan ventilation systems are usually a part of a larger framework of interconnected ventilation systems in your home. Combined with other systems, roof fan vents can help capture 70-80% of the energy in extreme summers and winters and resupply it back to your home.
Your system’s energy efficiency kicks in when pushed to the extreme. For example, in a hot summer month, hot air in your home stays trapped until it finds an exit and leaves, allowing cooler air to take its place. Without an efficient ventilation system, the heat stays trapped inside, forcing your air conditioner to work harder.
To fight this, you can install roof fan vents at the highest point of the roof, so they work at maximum efficiency. The fan blades rotate, pulling the rising hot air and pushing it out of your home.
As hot air gets pushed outside, cooler air comes in through other openings in your home (the stack effect). This exchange reduces your electricity bills because your HVAC system needs to spend less energy regulating temperature as the roof vent has already done half the work.
Besides keeping your home cool, a roof fan also functions as an air purifier.
Stuffy, moldy, and damp homes can cause harm to your respiratory system and lead to certain issues. Most of these problems can be traced to one primary cause—poor ventilation. High home humidity creates thriving conditions for mold and mildew growth on wooden surfaces inside your home.
Roof fans push out the hot, humid, and stale air, ushering in fresh air from outside. A roof fan vent can also benefit people who suffer from allergies as it pushes out allergens in the air, including dust and pollen.
Increased Air Flow and Ventilation
If you’re using a conventional fan to ventilate your home, you may notice they don’t facilitate airflow as they only recycle the same air trapped in the room. On the other hand, roof fans facilitate air flow and even function as powerful air conditioners, helping to keep your home cool during the summer.
More importantly, a roof fan can help keep your home cleaner by circulating the air inside your home and replacing it with clean air from outside. This function helps reduce the amount of dust and dirt accumulating on various surfaces.
So, aside from keeping your home cool and comfortable, a roof fan also improves indoor air quality, cleaning up your environment. In some cases, increased air flow creates a feeling of openness and spaciousness, which is especially important in large homes.
Prevention of Ice Dams
It’s best to keep your roof ventilated to prevent ice dams. When it starts to snow, the warmer, higher spaces under the ceiling melt down the snow, forcing the water to flow down to the roof’s edges where it’s cooler.
At this point, the water freezes again to form the first layers of ice. Unfortunately, this process eventuates if you haven’t installed a proper ventilation system, leading to the formation of ice dams that can be tricky to get rid of.
Roof fan vents can help reduce the creation of these dams by eliminating the hot air under the roof and preventing the process from repeating itself.
Roof Fan Ventilation Options
When temperatures rise, so do the energy demands of a home. So instead of leaving your air conditioning system to cope with the heat, installing a roof fan vent alongside your existing ventilation is a surefire way to boost the entire system’s efficiency.
These ventilation systems need little to no maintenance. They stand firm against harsh elements and last for decades when properly installed.
Here are a few roof fan ventilation options for your home:
Wind-Driven Roof Fan
Wind-driven roof vent fans like Lomanco’s Whirlybird® Turbine Ventilator are cost-efficient, wind-operated turbine ventilators that run on winds of up to 110 mph (177.03 kph) to expel hot, stale air from your home.
The best part? These systems come with minimal maintenance costs, ensuring guaranteed performance without being too heavy on your wallet.
Wind-driven roof fans have a relatively simple working mechanism. The air underneath the roof is pulled through a short duct and pushed out of the house through the vent. The amount of air drawn in and expelled through the vents depends on the direction of the wind, its velocity, and the number of fans installed on the roof.
Because these fans use the wind to move air throughout your home, they don’t create as much noise as your HVAC unit unless they haven’t been properly installed. Another advantage is that these systems are simultaneously cost-effective and environment-friendly.
Electric-Driven Roof Fan
As the name suggests, electric-driven roof fans are powered by electricity. They are installed on the highest point of the roof, and some are connected to the thermostat, so they automatically switch on when temperatures reach a certain threshold.
Electric-driven fans are not dependent on the wind and can be used in various environments, even in less windy spaces.
Solar-Powered Roof Fan
Solar-powered roof fans like Remington 30-Watt Solar Attic Fan run on electricity from an attached solar panel.
This system draws power from the sun. As such, it’s an excellent choice to reduce your cooling costs and save money on your annual electricity bill. This Remington unit also taps into your humidistat and thermostat and takes appropriate action when humidity and temperatures reach a certain threshold.
Generally, solar-powered roof fans are straightforward to use and perfect for homes in a sunny climate.
Disadvantages of Roof Fan Ventilation
While roof fan ventilation may seem like the ideal solution to improve indoor air and temperature settings, it’s best to be aware of the potential drawbacks before investing in one.
- Roof fans can be noisy – although this isn’t a problem in newly-installed units, after years of rotation, some moving parts are bound to become loose. Also, if the vent is poorly installed, it creates a continuous, annoying rattling sound that’s difficult to fix without professional help.
- While the installation cost is generally lower than installing a new roof, it’s still pretty expensive – the work involves tearing off a few shingles to pave the way for the new installation. Typically, a single roof turbine installation costs between $50 and $300. The more turbines you install, the higher the price.
- Although roof turbines promise zero maintenance costs, adding new ventilation options involves regularly checking your roof’s condition – it’s crucial to note that installing a roof vent doesn’t eliminate the need for regular maintenance on the roof. Like any part of your home, it will continue to deteriorate slowly, and routine maintenance is essential.
Roof maintenance and repair costs as little as $150 for minor repairs (e.g., water leaks) that may need to be addressed after installing a roof fan vent. More extensive repairs can set you back up to $1,500, but it’s unlikely that your new ventilation system will cause these.
As with any home improvement project, some risks come with installing a roof fan. For instance, homeowners should know that roof fans are of little use if installed in the wrong location. Therefore, we recommend hiring a professional for the job so you can get the installation done correctly.
Roof Fan Ventilation Costs
The most crucial factor to consider when choosing a roof fan is the price of the roof ventilator and the total cost of the new installation. For a DIY project, your estimated expenditure should be enough to cover the total cost of materials and tools needed for the installation.
The cost of roof fan ventilation also depends on your fan type. Powered roof turbines typically cost more due to the moving parts and motors. They also come with new maintenance implications for electronic components. Wind turbines, on the other hand, have fewer moving parts and fewer installation costs.
If you have a high-rise home and need more ventilation than a single roof fan can provide, you might want to install a second roof vent.
Where to Buy Roof Vents
The good news is that there’s a wide selection of places you can find cheap, long-lasting roof fan ventilation options for your needs. The links below are affiliate links also. You can choose to use them or not and the prices don’t change either way.
Start with these sellers:
- Local home improvement and roofing stores
- Other online retailers like Lowe’s
- Global wholesale sellers and manufacturers on Alibaba
We recommend getting in touch with seasoned roofing contractors for new installations. Local stores come with the advantage of letting you assess the product before buying. However, they’re typically more expensive than online retailers. However, some stores may have a professional to lend a hand with the project.
Amazon has no shortage of options for roof turbine manufacturers and sellers. However, you must deal with shipping costs, longer delivery times, and lack of professional help.
For reference, here are the top 5 roof vents selling on Amazon right now also:
- Package Weight: 1.347 Kilograms
- Country Of Origin: Mexico
- Package Height: 30.48 Centimeters
- Package Length: 13.69 Centimeters
- This item is Broan-Nutone 636 Roof Vent Cap Only
- Used For Appliance Parts & Accessories,Miscellaneous Accessories
- The product is manufactured in United States
- Compatible with either a 3 in. or 4 in. round duct
- Vents Material: Roof Ventilator Is Sturdy, Durable And Made Form High Quality Weather Resistant Materials. It Offers The Performance Of Standard Roof Venting Systems But In A Slimline, Low Finish Which Is Designed To Releases Your Trapped Air In Your Roof Space By As Much As 50 Degrees In Just Minutes.
- Vent Connect Size: 110Mm,150Mm,200Mm
- Vent Function: Premium-Grade Stainless Steel Dual Ball Bearings With Integrated Molded Shield To Protect Bearings Raceway.Internally And Externally Braced; Permanently Lubricated Ball Bearings.
- Stainless Steel Exhaust Hood For: Ideal For Residential Or Light Commercial Use. Stainless Steel Turbines Fits Any Roof
- Air Vent Package: 1Pcs×Stainless Steel Roof Ventilator
- 【COOL AND CLEAN】- This is a perfect solar fan for small chicken coops, sheds, greenhouses, pet houses, boat cabins and more. 5W solar roof fan can exhaust hot air and bad smell, let in fresh air, improve temperature and humidity.
- 【EASY INSTALLATION】- There are four long strip mounting holes on both sides of the housing, which is convenient for you to fix the fan to any wall or roof. Installation requires self-provided screws and tools.
- 【STURDY AND DURABLE】- The galvanized steel Shell is covered with black anti-rust paint, brushless waterproof motor with a service life of more than 10,000 hours, which is specially designed for long-term outdoor use in any weather.
- 【FREE POWER】- Powered by completely free solar energy, no need to use household power, it will work automatically when the sun shines.
- 【WORRY-FREE SHOPPING】 - We provide a one-year warranty for this fan, and you can get a free replacement if there is any problem. Please contact DC HOUSE in time!
- HIGH-QUALITY ROOF CAP: Roof cap for use with Range Hoods, LoSone Fans, and bath ventilation fans maximizes the air and sound performance of your fan or range hood
- DURABLE: Constructed of sturdy, 24-gauge CRCQ steel construction with a black electrically-bonded epoxy finish to ensure durability and lasting use
- RELIABLE: Includes a built-in, backdraft damper and bird screen provide a dependable roof cap you can rely on
- SECURE: Footprint is 18.75" x 14.25" for a secure, well-balanced fit
- EASY INSTALLATION: Roof cap is designed to fit with a 6" round duct to provide a simple, flexible installation
When installing a roof fan, there are a few safety precautions that you should follow. For starters, you should ensure that the fan is U.L. certified and meets all safety standards the National Electrical Code set for electric roof turbines.
After this, take some time to ensure the fan is in top shape before installation to avoid unforeseen reinstallation costs.
Finally, pick the perfect spot to set up your roof fan. By choosing the right location, your ventilator will have a more significant effect on the home and help promote a better indoor environment.
Without this knowledge, the installation may not produce the results you seek. And in such a case, you will have to redo the project, which leads to increased costs.
If you’re looking for a simple and affordable way to reduce energy costs, a roof fan vent is a great option. Not only are they cheap and maintenance-free, but they’re also easy to install if you’re a seasoned DIYer with experience in working on roof projects.
- Roof Hub: 11 Best Types Of Roof Vents + Understanding Attic Ventilation
- Constro Facilitator: Roofing ventilation and different types of vents
- Strong Guard: Does Roof Ventilation Really Work?
- Bill Ragan Roofing: What are the Types of Roof Vents? (Active & Passive Roof Ventilation)
- DD Roofing: 8 Types of Roof Vents & Their Benefits
- WHO: Household air pollution and health
- Forest Preserves: The average US household produces 7.5 tons of CO2 equivalents per year. Here are things you can do to help reduce that amount.
- Energy.gov: Whole-House Ventilation
- Lomanco: Lomanco Whirlybird® Turbine
- Home Guide: How much does it cost to install a roof vent? (Ridge, gable & soffit)
- Forbes: How Much Does Roof Repair Cost?