Charlene loves all things home related and has a wide range of knowledge/skills learnt day-to-day as a caregiver, home-maker, mom and wife
Imagine having a shower and your head is submerged in the droplets of heavenly stream then you hear a baby crying. I guess that is not such a big deal because it happens but what if...you do not have a baby (Feeling chills yet?). So now you already paranoid because that is what you thought you heard and now you realize the bathroom is filled with steam. Movies with fog and mist flash before your eyes and you deduce correctly that most times nothing good ever comes from that particular form of precipitation. Now at this point, in my case, I will be convinced that someone just whispered my name in a raspy whisper and in my panic, I have adopted the pose of a petrified statue. Or possibly started mimicking a fish with the gaggling eyes and the open/close mouth situation. Then at that point, possibly my youngest (a pre-teen), will bang on the door and scream ‘Mommy...’ causing me to either die a thousand deaths or shock me into grabbing my towel and getting the hell out of the bathroom.
Basically, as you can tell I clearly needed a bathroom extractor fan because as you can also tell, I suffer from a hyper-active imagination. There were many questions I had before I made my decision on the best bathroom ceiling fan for my household and I will share a Q&A I compiled in my search.
Do bathroom exhaust fans need to be vented outside?
All bathroom exhausts need to have some sort of exhaust to ensure that the moisture is escaping somehow. This entirely depends on your configuration, but it is always a good idea to have the vent outside.
How much does it cost to install a bathroom exhaust fan?
Some companies install the exhaust fan for free, while others have a price range of a few dollars at minimum to about 20-30$ at max.
Can bathroom exhaust fans be installed vertically?
Yes, you can install your exhaust fans vertically. You might need strong suction to ensure that the moisture does pass through the vent without leaking though.
How do you install a bathroom vent duct?
To install a bathroom vent duct, we would recommend getting a professional’s help. The process itself is pretty difficult and can cost you a lot if something goes wrong.
Is it OK to vent bathroom fan into attic?
No. There are so many problems with your bathroom fan being vented to the attic. The first problem is that your vent will become a house for moisture, essentially leading to creepy crawlies infestations. Other problems include the attic smelling like dirty socks and your house getting potentially damaged during winters when it freezes all over.
How far can you run a bathroom fan vent?
There are no limitations to how long you can run a bathroom fan vent, as long as you have the appropriate wiring, and the fan is strong enough to pump the moisture out. You would not want the moisture to condense inside the pipes, causing damage, would you?
Can I install a bathroom fan myself?
Yes, you can install a bathroom fan yourself as long as you have the proper equipment. Do note that it does require intricate wiring so you might end up damaging something if you are not careful.
Do I need an electrician to install an extractor fan in my bathroom?
In most cases, yes you do need an electrician or a professional to install an extractor fan in your bathroom. In rare cases, you can install the extractor or vent fan yourself if you have found a reputable vendor with great instructional.
We hope that this simple Q&A has helped you somewhat on the logistics of a bathroom fan and yes, I suppose you can circumvent the steam buildup by opening a window instead. However, the results are slow so you may still feel like you are being watched through the mist and if it does work but you run the risk of letting in too much air while you are naked so freezing your tushy off will also be a possibility. Nevertheless, it is your choice primarily if you want your bathroom steamy... so to extract or not to extract, that is question.
Charlene Gallant (author) from Cape Town, South Africa on January 25, 2021:
Your support is always appreciated Pamela
Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on January 25, 2021:
This is a very good, informative article. Thank you for this information, Charlene.