Thursday, June 6, 2013

Whole House Fan Systems

Another great energy savings system that receives little notice is that of the Whole House Fan. Primarily they are found in the southern tier states of the US or locations that experience a more temperate and mild climate year round but in recent years are expanding to nearly every state in the US. Their ability to utilize cooler outdoor air which is pulled into the home through windows and doors and vented out through the attic make them a great energy savings device.
We are all very familiar with just how hot temperatures can climb in an enclosed attic space during the summer months, but few take into account that these temperatures can be very damaging to their roofing materials. Severe temperatures in excess of 200F often times will cause buckling or curling of asphalt roofing shingles which opens them up causing leaks and cracking virtually destroying their ability to shed water. Keeping your attic and thereby your roof cooler will greatly extend the life of your roofing shingles and by employing a whole house fan which is typically installed in the ceiling of the first floor you can achieve this very easily. During summer months the whole house fan will draw air from the first floor into the attic space where it is then vented out either through roof mounted attic vent(s) or through a controllable gable end vent.
These fan systems will also break up what is known as "static air" which is typically a layer of hot air that has become so thick that ceiling fans cannot break it up allowing this air to be circulated and therefore it only continues to build up because it quite simply cannot escape. Some of you may even be able to recall days where it felt extremely hot indoors but despite the fact that you had your ceiling fans set on high speed you still could not feel any air movement. Static air can become a health risk if on these hot days it is allowed to build to a point where your body has stopped sweating which makes you a very good candidate for heat stroke or exhaustion. Maintaining a good circulation of the entire homes air is the single best way to keeping temperatures low while at the same time protecting your roof and creating a healthy environment within.
It is no secret that energy costs have risen sharply in such a short period of time and despite all of the complaining to local or state level politicians nothing is being done to reduce your costs but what you yourself are prepared to do in reducing them through energy efficient means. In some states however, there have been noted to be certain energy efficiency incentives that have been made available on a limited basis in a few states and not all states offer them. So again it is a good thing that this old technology still has an old price tag making them a very affordable system to consider.
Thermal imaging of homes that are currently utilizing the cooling benefits of whole house fans are indisputable as are shown in these images which clearly shows the bright purple and green colors which signifies cooler temperatures. The cost of these systems when compared to the amount of money you are currently spending on electricity cooling systems is very small at best. When you can realize a return on investment within the first year of operation it makes all the sense in the world to get this system installed in your home as soon as possible so that you can start saving immediately.

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