Bathroom fan combos incorporate three vital functions into a single unit, typically installed in the ceiling: a ventilation fan, overhead illumination, and an electric heating element. Bathrooms present a unique environment in any home. They’re frequently moist and misty, prone to mold and mildew, typically more chilly in winter than other rooms, and they require bright light for personal grooming. Bathroom fan combos do it all. Here are some facts to consider when purchasing/installing a bathroom combination unit.
- Adequate bathroom ventilation is critical to remove water vapor and odors. The fan should be rated for 1 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of air per each square foot of bathroom area.
- The ventilation fan in these units must be connected to a sealed duct extending to the exterior of the house and exhausting moisture into outside air. Never vent a bathroom directly into the attic, as accumulating moisture will rot wooden structural components, contaminate insulation, and trigger mold growth.
- The lamp in a bathroom combo is typically a 100 watt incandescent or fluorescent bulb, or an LED array with equivalent rating. LED lighting provides longer service without the requirement to change the bulb. Often, the unit also incorporates a low-wattage night light, usually around 7 watts.
- The electric heating element in most combo units provides 1,000 to 1,500 watts of heat for a typical residential bathroom.
- Because of safety issues in a moist environment, installation of a bathroom fan combo should be handled by a licensed HVAC contractor or electrician. The units often require a separate circuit protected by a GFCI (ground fault interrupter circuit) to prevent electrical hazard.
- A timer switch (instead of a simple on/off switch) is usually installed to ensure that the unit continues to operate for a sufficient time period — usually 15 minutes — after bathing to fully exhaust water vapor from the air, then shuts off automatically.
For professional help in selecting and installing bathroom fan combos in your home in the Indianapolis area, contact the experts at Mowery Heating and Cooling.