What Is A Solar Attic Fan And How Do You Install It?

Although your attic might be one of the last places you'd think to ventilate, it's actually quite important. According to Owens Corning, if there is insufficient ventilation in the attic of your house, excess heat and moisture may cause significant damage to the structure of the building.

The accumulation of heat and moisture in an attic causes difficulties that are predictable but distinct in hot and cold climates; regions that have scorching summers and freezing winters are susceptible to the impacts of both. They explain that when it's hot outdoors, the sun's rays hitting the roof may raise the temperature in the attic. Heat exposure may bend the roof sheathing and distort and prematurely age the shingles.

This is exactly why a solar attic fan might be the perfect addition to your home. If you're wondering what a solar attic fan is and how you can go about installing one, keep on reading.

What is a solar attic fan?

A solar attic fan is a device that ventilates your attic by means of solar power, per The Solar Guys. They work to get unnecessary heat out of your home and keep your energy bill low, owing to their solar power technology.

A solar attic fan will make sure your attic stays cool during the hot summer months while also making sure it doesn't collect excess dampness and moisture. This is important because summer heat and moisture may promote the development of fungus and mold in your attic, while also causing structural damage to your house. What's more, solar attic fans are also an environmentally friendly choice. All in all, they're a great investment for your home.

According to Green Building Elements, there are also almost no ongoing costs after initial installation. Solar attic fans are also quiet and pose no threat from dangerous gasses, such as carbon monoxide, as opposed to electrically powered ones. However, they note that solar attic fans will not work as well when the sun isn't out.

Installing a solar attic fan

As Home Inspector Secrets suggests, the first thing you should do is pick the location for your solar attic fan. They recommend placing it 2 feet away from your roof ridge. Next, use a stud finder to locate the midpoint of the roof's rafter and drill a screw into place. You can also use a nail and hammer for this step. Afterward, use a pencil or marker to mark your shingles with the cutout circular template that your attic fan will come with.

If your solar attic fan didn't come with a template, you can use a piece of cardboard and cut out a circle to match the fan's size. Next, use a reciprocating saw to cut along the traced template, per Everything Solar. After you've cleared out the space for your attic fan, place your fan into the hole to make sure it fits. If it does, you can go ahead and seal the attic fan in place using caulk and screws.

While you can DIY-install a solar attic fan, Everything Solar does caution DIYers to be careful and to take the necessary safety precautions when installing such a ventilator. They recommend getting professional help, as this way you can get the job done quickly and without risk.