Residential exhaust fans

nizak

Senior Member
I am looking for some input on selecting a brand/ model of bath exhaust fans.

Mostly 80-150 CFM size.

I recently tried some Delta Breeze brand that advertised as super quit. They incorporate a DC motor. The sone listings are less than 1.0 ,but when they are installed they are about the same as a mid grade NuTone unit with a 2 sone sound level.










Latently I have been doing more custom higher end houses and the clientele are very particular when it comes to this issue. Cost is not a huge concern, the customers are willing to pay for what they want.

It's one of those things that needs to be right the first time. No easy way to change out units after the final trim out.



Any help would be appreciated.
 

JFletcher

Senior Member
Location
Williamsburg, VA
Two smaller fans will be quieter than one larger one, everything else being equal.

You can get fans as low as 0.3 sones, but if the ductwork is wrong, or your fan rattles, all bets are off. You can put blue locktite on the setscrews of the brackets, and tape them to keep rattling noises down. Making sure everything is tight, and sealing around the fan housing to the drywall with caulk also helps lower noise.

If the ceiling is textured, removing it so than the fan's exterior cover sits dead flush will also help with noise.
 

al hildenbrand

Senior Member
Location
Minnesota
Occupation
Electrical Contractor, Electrical Consultant, Electrical Engineer
I'll second the Panasonic Whisper line for the 80 - 150 CFM capacity. 4" duct, and a bunch of plug and play add on modules to add delay off, humidity, motion, etc. The wiring is a bit different, but it is a sweet collection of ability and add ons.
 

ramsy

Owner/Operator
Location
LA basin, CA
Occupation
Service Electrician 2017 NEC
I've been installing the Air King brand, Interior Designer supplies. They are quite easy to install and are well built. The lowest I would use would be the 200 Series. They do require a 6" duct and they do move the air.

http://www.airkinglimited.com/page/energy-star-deluxe-quiet-exhaust-fan-2.html
Rather than a rectified DC motor, known to cause line noise/harmonics that have nuisance tripped AFCI & GFCI protected circuits, that Air King uses a permanent split capacitor motor.

Perhaps fan vents with AC motors are better in Shower Zones where OEM instructions 110.3(B) require GFCI protection.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Ducting is critical to keeping sound down. more resistance to air flow the louder the fan will be.

Flex duct has more resistance to air flow then smooth duct. If you must use flex, definitely increase it to six inches to compensate. The more bends in the duct the more resistance to air flow.


Most of the ultra quiet fans out there use a larger blower wheel but run it at a lower speed - is the biggest step they take to making them quiet. Proper ducting is the rest of the story.
 

edward

Senior Member
Location
CA
Occupation
Electronologist
Panasonic and inline Fantech have been an excellent choice for me.

I agree with others about the proper ducting. Use rigid ducting.

Minimize the number of bends and make sure your fist bend out of the fan is as far away from the fan as possible without making the total duct run longer than necessary.
 

FionaZuppa

Senior Member
Location
AZ
the additional work for rigid vs flex is debatable. for hardcore problem solving you might end up with rigid, but for the avg homeowner and avg install, the sound diff between rigid and flex will likely not be noticeable by the homeowner, or even perhaps a generic spl meter (phone app, other, etc). and i do not suspect anyone will be testing the two at actual install site to determine which is better for the input effort.
 

FionaZuppa

Senior Member
Location
AZ
I shake my head at the status crowd who have nothing better to be upset over than a bit of noise in a sometimes noisy place.
sometimes noisy fans are good, when in the toilet area :lol:
super silent fan in a "public" use bathroom close to that livingroom/kitchen and its a holiday with lots of family and food :lol:
 
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