CNBC reported in 2016 that indoor air can be far deadlier than outdoor air, especially when you consider that the average person living in a city spends as much as 90 percent of his or her time indoors rather than out. The report goes on to say that using coal or biomass burning stoves alone has lead to more deaths (4.3 million) each year than outdoor air pollution (3.7 million). The EPA also reports that the concentrations of some pollutants are two to five percent higher indoors than outdoors.

What’s to Blame for Deteriorating Indoor Air Quality?
Why is indoor air quality so much worse than outdoor air? This is a great question, especially when you consider we are working so hard to build homes and offices that are more energy efficient than ever before?

Some believe this dedication to energy efficiency may be, at least partially, to blame for the worsening quality of indoor air. Of course, there is more to it than just that. But, it’s a good place to begin looking for answers.

The other problem involves pollutants brought into homes and buildings. There are the usual suspects, mold spores and allergens walked in on shoes and the paws of pets. Then there are a few surprising sources of pollutants brought into your home in the form of chemicals introduced through off-gassing when you bring new furniture into your home, paint a room, or even cook with certain types of oils.

Don’t forget the usual suspects for bringing air quality down like smoking tobacco, lingering moisture in kitchens and bathrooms, and exposure to colds and other viruses. These germs, once brought into the home, have nowhere to go to escape well ventilated homes and offices.

So, How Do You Get the Bad Air Out?
With so many factors contributing to the presence of poor air quality inside your home, what can you do to improve the overall quality of air in your home? One of the most effective methods, according to the EPA, is to bring greater amounts of fresh, clean, outdoor air into your home.

Opening your windows is an excellent way to accomplish that. One way to kick your efforts up a notch – or twenty – is to install a whole house fan. Whole house fans draw fresh air into your home through open windows on lower floors, but also works to push the stale, toxic air out of your home through vents installed in your roof – creating greatly improved indoor air quality for your entire family to enjoy.

Here at WholeHouseFan.com, we offer several types of whole house fans, designed to pull cool ―and fresh air into your home. Take a look at our whole house fans (we offer an exclusive 90-day risk-free purchase guarantee and free shipping). Give us a call at 1.888.229.5757 if you have any questions.

 

Fall is an interesting season that presents a few unique problems when it comes to keeping your home comfortable throughout the day and night. While most people only think of whole house fans to cool homes at night, there are other ways you can use your whole house fan in the fall that allows you to get more mileage from your investment.

Consider this for keeping your home comfortable long after the dog days of summer have given over to cooler fall weather.

Draw Cooler Daytime Air into Your Home
While many homes use whole house fans at night during the summer to draw cooler air into the home, that doesn’t mean you can only use your fans for coolness at night. In fact, on those in-between days, when it’s just a little bit uncomfortable inside your home but cooler outside than in, you can draw cool air inside your home to offset the heat of the day and daytime activities that might be warming the air inside. This lets you stay cool and comfortable well into autumn without resorting to air conditioning.

Reduce Fall Allergies inside Your Home
When your home is airtight during winter and fall months, it often traps allergens, viruses, and bacteria inside. Using your whole house fan periodically throughout these seasons, whenever the weather allows, helps to remove these nasty, harmful things from your home, replacing them with fresh air instead. This helps to improve the air quality in your home and can create a healthier environment for your family. As an added bonus, your home will smell better too!

Draw Warm Daytime Air into Your Home
Because whole house fans work by drawing the air outside your home into the home, they can be used to warm your house during the daytime hours without turning on your heater. That way your home can remain nice and comfortable well into the evening, this helps you postpone the inevitable turning on of heaters in winter and keeps fresh air coming into your home in seasons when this would otherwise not be the case.

Whole house fans can make your home more comfortable and the air more breathable in almost every season, include the fall. Whether you’re looking for a way to reduce the costs of heating and cooling as winter months approach or you’re looking to create healthier air inside your home, using your whole house fan in fall months can be instrumental.

“A growing body of scientific evidence has indicated that the air within homes and other buildings can be more seriously polluted than the air in even the largest and most industrialized cities.” That is what the EPA has to say about indoor air quality.

For people who spend 90 percent or more of their time indoors, this can expose them to serious health risks from indoor air pollution. This is especially concerning for the young, the elderly, those who are chronically ill, and anyone who suffers from cardiovascular and/or respiratory diseases.

How Bad is the Problem of Indoor Air Quality?
The EPA’s Office of Research and Development conducted a study, called the Total Exposure Assessment Methodology (TEAM) Study. The study, completed in 1985, found levels of nearly a dozen commonly known organic pollutants to be two to five times higher inside homes than outside. The study found this to be the case in homes in large cities, industrial areas, and rural areas alike.

What Causes the Poor Indoor Air Quality Problems?
Many things contribute to poor indoor air quality in homes. In most cases, it is likely to be a combination of factors. We’ve worked hard to create homes, office spaces, and business buildings that are more airtight and energy efficiency. This push has had some unintended consequences as well.

These upgrades to homes and offices help to reduce the amount of air conditioned or heated air that escapes these spaces. Which is perfect for maintaining an ideal temperature without breaking the bank. But it doesn’t only hold in air. We bring harmful things into the home every day – often without even realizing it. Many in the form of everyday things, such as:

Disinfectants
Cleaning products
Dry cleaned clothing, curtains, and bedding
Pesticides
Hobby supplies
Air fresheners
Aerosol sprays like hairspray
New furniture
Building materials
Office equipment
Crafting materials

The list is long and hard to avoid with the lifestyles we lead. One of the biggest problems, though, is that your home may be inadequately ventilated. But there are things you can do to improve the air quality in your home.

Solving Indoor Air Quality Problems in Your Home
First, find out how bad the problem is by purchasing indoor air quality sensors or a monitor, like Awair, that tracks various air quality factors in your home. This particular model has a partnership with the Mayo Clinic to offer tips for improving air quality. This will help you understand the air quality problem in your home. As the name implies, indoor air quality monitors detect pollutants in the air inside your home and alert you to their presence.

One of the biggest things you can do to solve your air quality problem is to install and use a whole house fan to provide natural ventilation in your home. Not only does this draw fresh air into your home, but it also expels the polluted air and toxins from your home clearing the air, so everyone can breathe easier.

For many homeowners, attic ventilation is the least of their concerns. After all, the attic is often a forgotten space inside the home. However, what many homeowners don’t know is that a well-ventilated attic is important because it helps regulate the temperature inside the house, which can ultimately contribute to a comfortable home.

Since the proper attic ventilation is what keeps your house warm in the winter and cool enough in the summer, it’s essential to understand how it all works.

What Is Attic Ventilation and Why It’s Important
Attic ventilation refers to the way an attic is designed to move air out and in. Adequate ventilation maintains a cool room temperature to control ice dams that are a result of melting snow and to reduce condensation that can build up in the attic space.

In warmer climates, attic ventilation helps expels the hot air created by the sun which can drastically help cut cooling costs. You’ll find that a lack of ventilation will cause a load of frost accumulation inside the attic during the winter which can cause excessive moisture and mold growth while during the summer months your air conditioner will be working overtime to cool off your home.

Types of Attic Ventilation
There are several methods that can be used to properly ventilate your attic space depending on the design and construction of the roof or attic. Here are some of the most common attic ventilation methods:

Vents
Roof vents should be a part of your attic ventilation system. The size and type of roof vents that can be used should be determined by a professional who has thoroughly assessed the construction of your home. Keep in mind when installing roof vents that you are better off with the excessive intake ventilation rather too little of it.

Attic Fan
Most homeowners opt to install an attic fan which works by drawing in cooler air from outside. If your attic is equipped with soffit vents that are sealed off then your home won’t likely benefit from this ventilation method.

Insulation
You also have the option of adding insulation to your attic. This method adds warmth but it also allows for cool air to enter through the vents.

Benefits of Ventilating The Attic
A well-ventilated attic aids in decreasing your annual energy costs. It also improves the overall air circulation and extends the life of your roof. If your attic is lacking in ventilation, consider installing an attic fan, like the QuietCool Smart Attic Gable Fan – 2830 CFM or SmartAttic Roof Mount Fan SMT 2.0 2116 CFM to reap all the benefits it provides.

You likely know that behind the walls of your home is a network of ducts. The ducts connect to each room in your home, providing a pathway where air can cycle back and forth from your cooling and heating system. Without the supply and return vents, your ductwork wouldn’t be able to perform its job. But, do you know the difference between them?

Supply Vents vs. Return Vents
Below will explain the difference between your supply and return vents.

Supply Vents
The supply vents connect to your supply ducts. These are responsible for blowing the air into your indoor rooms. They’re usually smaller than the return vents and often have slats or louvers behind the grill that allow you to direct the flow of air.

Your home’s supply vents are the covers for your walls’ openings where the air blows out. The air then flows from your cooling and heating system out of your supply vents from the ductwork.

Turn the fan of your system on and hold your hand or a piece of paper in front of the vent. If you can feel the air blowing out — it’s your supply vent.

Return Vents
Return vents connect to the return ducts. These are responsible for pulling the air out of your indoor rooms and delivering the air to your cooling and heating system. They’re usually larger than supply vents and don’t have louvers.

While return vents also cover your walls’ openings, they connect to the return ducts. You don’t feel any air blow out of them like you do with the supply vents.

Turn on the fan of your system on and hold that piece of paper or your hand over the vent. If you feel a suctioning effect or notice the paper being sucked towards the vent — it’s your return vent.

Your air-supply and return system needs to follow a couple principles to function properly:

You should have a supply register and return-air register in each room of your house. If you have a home that wasn’t designed like this, for optimal efficiency, you may want to have them installed. Return registers should be installed on your inside walls; supply registers under windows and on outer walls.

Make sure the supply and return registers aren’t installed too close to one another, since the air may not circulate properly since the return vent will draw the supply air quickly back into the ductwork.

Some individuals believe they should close the vents if a room is too cold. They also believe this will save energy. However, doing so can damage your vents. When you close off a vent, it increases ductwork pressure, resulting in improper air flow. This causes your system to operate harder and wastes energy. If you’re looking to save on energy, you may want to consider installing a whole house fan.

To ensure your vents are running appropriately, don’t place any objects or furniture in front of them. Keep the area clear to make airflow easier. You need supply and return vents installed in your home to keep your home feeling comfortable. To ensure the vents are installed properly, call an HVAC professional to come and do the job.

To effectively cool and ventilate your home, while simultaneously reducing your energy bill, especially in moderate climates, use a whole house fan.

Man caves. The ultimate room for rampant testosterone-driven fun and festivities in the home today. These rooms can be your dream room filled with all the things (and toys) you love most But, is your man cave properly ventilated?

The odds are good if your man cave is in the garage or basement, it may not have the right kind of ventilation to meet your needs. Here’s what you need to know.

Most people think of creature comforts when planning for ventilation in their man caves. It’s understandable. You want to be able to remain cool and comfortable no matter what’s happening in your favorite video game, on the ice (for hockey fans), or with your favorite football team.

But ventilation is about so much more than keeping your cool in summer or heating things up in winter. It is also about making sure air is circulating effectively, humidity is being shown the nearest exit, and your precious possessions and memorabilia aren’t damaged by mold, mildew, moisture, or heat.

What Are Your Options for Man Cave Ventilation?
Your primary options for air purification in the past have been the combination of dehumidifiers to draw out moisture and air purifiers to reduce toxins in the air inside your man cave. Men who intend to smoke pipes, cigars, or cigarettes in their man caves might appreciate the abilities of a “smoke eating” device, but probably won’t be thrilled with the noise factor these tools generate.

We recommend one tool to get the job done without taking away the purpose, design, or human-friendly nature of your man cave: The QuietCool Garage Exhaust Fan. It doesn’t matter if your man cave is located in your garage, your attic, your workshop, or wherever. The QuietCool Garage Fan is an effective tool for driving smoke and moisture away from your man cave and releasing them into the great outdoors.

This fan is energy efficient, blowing 1452 CFM while using a paltry 47 watts of power, keeping it miles ahead of the competition when it comes to energy efficiency. You can even use it with garages that have attics to keep both spaces cool and comfortable for your man cave and its guests throughout the year. Better still, the GA ES-1500 is almost silent when operating so you’ll never miss a moment of commentary, even during intense putts on your favorite greens.

Contact us today to learn more about your options for keeping moisture out of your man cave while making it a cool and comfortable place to congregate. 1.888.229.5757

Is your garage home to hazardous materials and dangerous tools that you wouldn’t normally store inside your home? Then no doubt, you want to make the garage as safe as possible especially if you have a family.

Keep your home and family safe by periodically performing an inspection of your garage to address safety concerns before they become a major issue. You can use this checklist to ensure that your garage is safe and sound.

  1. Remove hazardous materials. Flammable chemicals like propane, gasoline or even lighter fluid should be contained in a place where they can’t be reached by small children. Experts recommend storing such materials away from the garage in a shed. However, if this is not possible you can keep them on shelving units away from the ground where they can easily spill over. Avoid storing flammable liquids near combustibles like cardboard or cloths.
  2. Store tools in a secure place. Be sure to store your gardening tools on the wall. You can install hooks so that they can be clipped to the wall  upright potential. You may not view gardening tools as dangerous but they can cause injury when they are left carelessly lying around. Just imagine, falling over a tool can result in cuts, bruises and in severe case broken bones. Electrical equipment like snow blowers and the lawn mower should be stored in a safe place with the safety controls activated.
  3. Use a garage exhaust fan. If you find that your garage has high humidity levels than it’s important to ventilate with a garage exhaust fan.  An intensely humid garage can provide the perfect environment for mold and mildew growth which can be harmful to your health. Yes, an exhaust fan will help reduce the build-up and reduce condensation.
  4. Maintain your garage door. There has been a number of injuries contributed to garage doors. You should make sure that the springs and brackets are in working order because you don’t want the door to fall on your car or on you when opening and closing.
  5. Keep a fire extinguisher handy. Garage fires are a common occurrence. Therefore you should make sure that you keep the fire extinguisher handy in a place where it can be easily accessed by anyone within the household.
  6. Install a carbon monoxide detector.  If you don’t already have one, it’s a good idea to install a carbon monoxide detector in the garage. Carbon monoxide is deadly and odorless. Since there are often toxic fumes in the garage, you’ll need to take measures to protect yourself.

 

Now is a great time to review and implement these 6 garage safety checks.

 

Whole-house fans have been helping cool down homes for years. They have a simple design and can purge the hot air right out of your home in a mere couple minutes. They not only remove this heat buildup, but also provide you with a pleasant breeze.

Some factors to consider when you’re out shopping for a whole house fan are as follows.

  1. Cost
    Whole-house fans cool your home, attic and workspace at only a fraction of the cost of an AC unit. They’re efficient, natural and cost-effective ways to get your home cool without spiking up your energy bill. Whole-house fans are innovative, have no chemicals and cool your home in minutes. Improve the quality of your indoor air and stay cool at the same time. Typically, these fans range from $450 to $1500 depending on the fan you choose.
  1. Noise
    Stay comfortable and cool without any noise disturbance. Traditional attic fans and ceiling mounted fans are noisy. Today’s modern whole-house fans, however, are whisper quiet at around 42 decibels sound level to the room. They don’t vibrate and you can watch TV, talk, sleep or read without disruption.
  1. Features
    Most whole-house fans come with modern features like:

Electric timer
1, 2, 4 and 8 hour time ranges
Extended use hold feature
No programming needed – easy to use
Set and forget operation
Fast setup

Don’t forget the wireless remote control so you can simply push a button to operate your whole-house fan. The signal travels through doors, walls and windows and comes with a 6-inch cord that you can use with 3 wire plugs. The remote even works over a 60 feet distance and is ready to use because its pre-programmed.

  1. Eco-Friendly
    Go green with a whole-house fan since it’s environmentally friendly. It’s also a great alternative to AC since its energy efficient. You save a lot of power with whole-house fans. Many cool your home and use about as much power as one fluorescent light bulb.
  1. Size
    A whole-house fan makes a complete two to three-minute air exchange creating a nice breeze throughout your home. To get the recommended flow rate, you calculate your home’s gross square footage by 2. For instance, if you have a 2,000 sq. ft. living area, you’d require a fan that’s with around 4,000 cubic feet per minute (CFM) of capacity.

No matter what whole-house fan you choose, your home has to have sufficient roof ventilation so airflow exhausts properly. Because of this, you may want to call on a professional ventilation contractor to figure out the best size whole-house fan that’s needed for your exhaust area.

To help you choose your new whole house fan, give us a call at 1.888.229.5757.

All homes require good ventilation. Ventilation is where indoor air is exchanged with outdoor air to help reduce odors, moisture and pollutants.  Why is home ventilation so important? For many reasons, including the reduction or elimination of contaminants, moisture, mold, and backdrafting. It can also improve your comfort inside the home.

Contaminants
Contaminants like volatile organic compounds (VOCs), formaldehyde and radon, which could lead to serious health issues, can accumulate inside your home if it’s poorly ventilated. It’s also hard to remove unpleasant odors without adequate ventilation.

Mold
Extra moisture in your home can lead to mold growth and physical damage. Mold exposure caused by inadequate ventilation can also cause health problems, including:

Headaches
Immune system issues
Eye, throat and nose irritation
Respiratory damage
Fevers
Worsen symptoms in patients with autoimmune diseases

When you properly ventilate your home, you’ll eliminate this moisture buildup by maintaining air movement. Proper ventilation moves extra moisture out of your living areas, preventing damage to furnishings and structures and mold growth that high moisture levels cause.

Backdrafting
When your home’s pressure inside is lower than the home’s outside pressure, then your home has negative pressure. This negative pressure can cause backdrafting where outdoor air is pulled inside your home.

If this happens, it can become dangerous if carbon monoxide and other combustion gases are pulled into your home through your chimney or another opening, becoming concentrated in your home. Proper ventilation controls your homes inside pressure, eliminating this issue.

Temperature
When you and your loved ones are in a confined space, it can lead to a hot and stuffy environment. You’ll make the room instantly more comfortable with ventilation.

Natural and Mechanical Ventilation
Your home can benefit from both natural ventilation and mechanical ventilation.

Natural Ventilation: Opening up your doors and windows will allow air to flow inside and through your home. This is known as natural ventilation. Natural ventilation can even occur through cracks surrounding your windows, but to conserve energy, you should really seal these up.

Mechanical Ventilation: Examples of mechanical ventilation are air ducts of your house, exhaust fans and whole house fans. Let’s take the whole house fan as an example. A whole house fan draws in the fresh outdoor air from open windows, exhausting it through your attic and roof. Whole house fans provide excellent whole house cooling and good attic ventilation.

Unless you have a good home ventilation system in place, you won’t have any control over the airflow in your home. Proper home ventilation can help.

If you’re interested in improving the ventilation in your home, take a look at our inventory of products, which include whole house fans, attic fans and garage exhaust fans. Then, give us a call at 1.888.229.5757 if you have any questions.

 

What comes to mind when you think of air pollution? For most of us, it’s a smog or haze that lingers in the air outside. However, what many people don’t know is that the air inside our homes, buildings and other places we visit is more polluted than outdoors.

The average person spends ninety percent of their time indoors, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Therefore, the health risks associated with exposure to air pollution are greater indoors than outside.

Check out these five factors that are impacting your home’s indoor air quality.

  1. Pets. While our pets are a big part of the family, they can also be harmful to the air quality inside  our homes. Many types of non-hypoallergenic pets shed excessive amounts of hair and skin cells. Also, pet hair and dander leave their mark all over your home including the upholstery, bedding, furniture and the air ducts Let’s not forget that they also have the tendency to roll around in contaminants. If you have allergies, then you may find that you’re experiencing symptoms more frequently than usual if you’re around pets.
  2. Poor Ventilation. Low air quality is often tied to poor ventilation. When there isn’t enough ventilation, your home doesn’t get as much fresh outdoor air as it should and indoor pollutants don’t get to circulate out. A whole house fan can add much-needed ventilation to your home.
  3. Dust.  If you don’t dust regularly, not only does your home starts to look and feel neglected, it can do damage to the air quality. Dust is airborne particles that come from a variety of sources such as hair, clothing, dirt, pollen and dead skin cells. Accumulation of dust can trigger allergies and asthma health conditions. The best way to effectively minimize dust is to use a microfiber cloth which traps dust, while a dusting feather simply spreads much of the dust around.
  4. Moisture.  Moisture can be detrimental to indoor air quality. Whether the culprit is a leaking pipe or an old air conditioner unit moisture provides the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. Mold and mildew can aggravate allergies and asthma symptoms and it’ll also deteriorate the health of an otherwise healthy individual.
  5. Plants.  While potted plants can be used to add style to a space they also have the ability to improve the air. Studies have shown that even the most basic houseplant, such as a spider plant or aloe vera plant, can help remove toxins like formaldehyde, benzene, carbon dioxide and other harmful toxins from the air.

 

If you interested in improving the ventilation in your home, give us a call at WholeHouseFan.com at 888-229-5757 to discuss your options and our solutions.

Your roof is an important part of your home. It keeps you warm on a cold winter’s night, dry when it’s raining out, and shielded from the sun’s rays. It also protects everything on the inside of your home. To ensure your roof will continue to protect you and your family from the outside elements, regular roof inspections are imperative.

There are various factors that can determine how often you should get your roof inspected such as the types of conditions it’s been weathering throughout the year and the types of materials it is made of. Immediate action should be taken if you see any signs of damage. Below are some guidelines to assist you in deciding how often you should get a roof inspection.

Inspecting your Roof Yourself
If you decide to do your own roof inspection, look for things like cracked caulking and uneven surfaces in your decking. Other things to take notice of include missing shingles or shingles that are buckling, curling or blistering, worn down rubber in your pipe vents, lichen or moss or any signs of decay.

If you find colored grit in your gutters, this is a red flag. You might think its sand, but what it really means is that your roof is getting too much UV ray exposure and could be an indication that your roof’s service life is near expiring. If you act quickly, you could buy yourself a few more years.

It’s also important that you have proper attic ventilation which can prevent ice dams in the wintertime. These build up during freezing temperatures and can cause damage. You can install an attic fan to help improve attic ventilation and preserve your roof.

Hiring a Professional to Inspect your Roof
The best policy when it comes to having your roof inspected is to hire a professional to do the job. When you don’t have the right kind of training, working on your roof can be dangerous. Professional roof contractors will have proper insurance coverage as well so if there are any accidents, they’re covered.

After you hire the right professional roof contractor to perform the inspection, ensure they also:

Look into the gutters: The contractor should always look into your gutters to see if there are any traces, grains or pieces of asphalt shingles (if this is the type of roof you have). If they find any, it could be a sign you are in need of a roof replacement.

Check the flashings: These are the metal pieces covering the edges and curves of your roof. When damaged, water can leak around them and inside of them.

Check for dry rot: If you have a roof made with shake or wooden shingles, the contractor should check for dry rot or warping to see if your shingles need replacing.

As your roof ages, a quick inspection each year can help prevent unexpected and unwanted problems. You definitely want to get a roof inspection at minimum once a year if your roof is nearing the last five years of its expected lifespan.  Have it inspected immediately after any significant storms as well.

Having a room that gets plenty of natural light during the daytime can be a great amenity for any home. While having plenty of light during the day can make your home seem bigger and brighter, too much light during the night can make it very difficult to sleep. And, too much sunlight coming into your bedroom can make the room warm and uncomfortable for sleep too.

If you have a room in your home, particularly your bedroom, that has too much light at night and lets in the heat of the sun in making it warm, installing blackout blinds could be a great option.

There are several different types of blackout blinds and shades that you should be aware of.

Blackout Shades
Blackout shades can come in a variety of styles including cellular shades and roller shades. The shades can be raised and lowered using a string or chain and are ideal to have installed due to the convenience.

An added benefit of having the shades installed is that they can come in many different patterns and colors and can even be customized to properly match the rest of the décor of your room. Once installed, the shades will block the vast majority of light from entering your room.

Blackout Curtains
Another option when you are looking to install new blinds is to install blackout curtains. Blackout curtains will do a great job of blocking out all light from entering a room. This includes the small cracks on the side of the window that are often missed by the blackout shades.

In many situations, a great option would be to install both shades and curtains to completely minimize the light from entering the room.

Thermal Insulated Blinds and Curtains
While traditional blackout blinds and curtains can do a great job of keeping light out of your home, an even better option would be to upgrade to thermal insulated curtains. Thermal insulated curtains can block light from entering your home the same way as traditional blackout blinds, but they can also help you to reduce your energy bills.

Thermal insulated curtains are designed to keep your home cool during the summer and warm during the winter. Additionally, thermal insulated blinds can also help to soundproof a room in your home by blocking outside noises.

In addition to installing blackout curtains in your bedroom to help keep it cool, consider installing a whole house fan. This beneficial device can take the place of air conditioning in some climates, and when used as directed, can draw in cool air, while pushing out hot air.