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Bathroom exhaust fans are something we tend to take for granted until they break, but they are an integral part of our home’s health. We should all know what they do, why they’re important, what kind of issues they can have, and when to get them replaced. What does the exhaust fan do?

The primary purpose of the fan is to remove moisture from your bathroom. Bathrooms get a lot of water flow, particularly in the form of steam during those hot showers. This moisture needs a place to go besides your walls and into the wood of your cabinetry. The exhaust fan takes moist air and vents it outside the living space.

A secondary purpose for the fan is to remove odors and keep fresh air flowing into the bathroom, thus improving general ventilation. The ventilation fan also keeps mirror fogging to a minimum. If you need to hop out of the shower and use the mirror to get ready for work every morning, you want to have an efficient bathroom fan.

Why are they important?

Mold and mildew are serious health hazards, and your exhaust fan helps you battle both. Mold spores are notoriously fast-growing, meaning it’s possible that you could get an all-clear one week but have a serious problem the next. The fan helps get rid of the moisture that mold loves and needs.

When you think of odor control in the bathroom, you probably think first about the toilet, but that’s not the most important thing to worry about when it comes to bathroom ventilation. We tend to clean our bathrooms with chemicals that prevent the spread of illness: but those chemicals are also hard on your health. Good bathroom ventilation gets rid of those fumes and keeps your family safe.

What issues can an exhaust fan have?

A lot of exhaust fan issues have to do with poor installation, so if you’re just moving into a new place, it’s always a good idea to call someone like Clark’s Heating and Air and get them to check out all the exhaust fans. This is especially important if you suspect any kind of electrical issue.

One common installation issue is poor insulation. This can mean that heat and moist air escapes around the fan and into your attic where it can cause mold issues. If the fan isn’t fitted tightly, it might rattle and make an annoyingly loud noise whenever you turn it on. Many older fans are also too small for the space they’re supposed to be ventilating, which means they don’t work effectively and fail too soon.

When should I get the exhaust fan replaced?

If your fan stops working entirely, it’s almost always better to replace than to repair. You’ll also want to replace your fan if you find it is too small for the space or has too high of an electrical draw: which is often the case with older fans that come with heaters.

You might also consider replacing the fan in order to increase efficiency. Newer units are Energy Star certified and will do the job while using less electricity. You can get efficient, modern fans that let you adjust the speed based on the need of the moment and even set a timer to make sure you get effective ventilation without any unnecessary waste of energy.

Finally, you might consider a change just for personal and aesthetic reasons. New fans look better, come in a variety of colors, and are lot quieter than the old exhaust fans many people have in their bathrooms.

If you’re not satisfied with your exhaust fan’s performance, you don’t have to just live with it. Protect your home and make yourself more comfortable by making sure you have the right fan in the bathroom.