Whole house fan

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fortysixandtwo
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Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2016 10:40 am

Whole house fan

Post by fortysixandtwo » Mon May 07, 2018 12:42 pm

Hey there,

Anyone had any experience with a Centric Air "Comfort Cool" attic fan? I know "Quiet Cool" fans are pretty popular, but from videos I've seen it looks like the "Comfort Cool" has a better warranty and is quieter.

bloom2708
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Location: Fargo, ND

Re: Whole house fan

Post by bloom2708 » Tue May 08, 2018 8:28 am

If you search, there are a few useful threads on "whole house fan" from the past.

Our thermostat (ecobee3) allows me to set the fan to run X minutes of each hour. I set it to 50 minutes. So, even if there is no call for heat or cool the stage 1 fan (silent) is running and mixing air from around the house.

Running fan only keeps cold and warm air from pooling. I don't have any direct experience with a whole house fan. I assume the concept is similar. I think you would want it to run a low speed.

A typical fan will be blowing quite vigorously and I do not think you will get that through your duct system. You might just end up kicking up a lot of dust. Do you want to feel/hear air moving? What is your use case for wanting a whole house fan?
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BolderBoy
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Re: Whole house fan

Post by BolderBoy » Tue May 08, 2018 8:48 am

fortysixandtwo wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 12:42 pm
Anyone had any experience with a Centric Air "Comfort Cool" attic fan? I know "Quiet Cool" fans are pretty popular, but from videos I've seen it looks like the "Comfort Cool" has a better warranty and is quieter.
Just to be sure we are talking about the same thing, a "whole house fan" is different than an "attic fan". The latter is usually mounted inside the attic blowing hot attic air out a vent. The former is usually mounted in the ceiling of the living space proper, pulling air upwards from the inside of the house.

I don't have experience with the brand you mentioned. Mine is made by Triangle Engineering (google it), is a real beast and has been in place for 10 years now without issues and gets used almost daily from early May thru September/October. It is running right now, matter of fact. Outside temp this morning was 55 when I turned it on 30 minutes ago; inside temp was 70...now falling.

Best house improvement I've ever made.
"Never underestimate one's capacity to overestimate one's abilities" - The Dunning-Kruger Effect

Easy Rhino
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Location: San Diego

Re: Whole house fan

Post by Easy Rhino » Tue May 08, 2018 6:27 pm

Had one installed by a contractor about 3 years ago along with insulation work and stuff. I believe the fan is a panasonic. It has a high and low switch and is quite brawny. The fan is a bit removed from the ceiling via a large duct so it's a bit quieter.

It's really nice when the outside is at least 10 degrees cooler than the inside (preferably more). So good in spring/fall.

Biggest problem is my wife liking to turn it on if we make our kitchen stinky during the winter, which cools off the house way too fast.

JoinToday
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Re: Whole house fan

Post by JoinToday » Tue May 08, 2018 8:19 pm

BolderBoy wrote:
Tue May 08, 2018 8:48 am
..... Mine is made by Triangle Engineering (google it), is a real beast and has been in place for 10 years now without issues and gets used almost daily from early May thru September/October. It is running right now, matter of fact. Outside temp this morning was 55 when I turned it on 30 minutes ago; inside temp was 70...now falling.

Best house improvement I've ever made.
I agree 100%. Mine is also from Triangle Engineering. The only thing you need to be careful of is attic ventilation to the outside. If there is not enough venting area, the limiting factor for air blowing will not be the fan size.
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BolderBoy
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Location: Colorado

Re: Whole house fan

Post by BolderBoy » Tue May 08, 2018 9:19 pm

JoinToday wrote:
Tue May 08, 2018 8:19 pm
BolderBoy wrote:
Tue May 08, 2018 8:48 am
..... Mine is made by Triangle Engineering (google it), is a real beast and has been in place for 10 years now without issues and gets used almost daily from early May thru September/October. It is running right now, matter of fact. Outside temp this morning was 55 when I turned it on 30 minutes ago; inside temp was 70...now falling.

Best house improvement I've ever made.
I agree 100%. Mine is also from Triangle Engineering. The only thing you need to be careful of is attic ventilation to the outside. If there is not enough venting area, the limiting factor for air blowing will not be the fan size.
Absolutely. First thing they did to my house was add 5 more large, attic vents.
"Never underestimate one's capacity to overestimate one's abilities" - The Dunning-Kruger Effect

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tyrion
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Re: Whole house fan

Post by tyrion » Fri May 25, 2018 2:43 pm

I had a Quietcool fan installed last night. I had one in my previous house as well, that I installed myself and it was a bit undersized.

This one was installed by 'the quiet cool guys' who apparently cover all of southern California.

The previous install was a real challenge. The attic space was small and even worse, low. There was loose insulation everywhere. I had to disassemble the fan just to get it in to the attic, and reassemble it while lying flat on my stomach. Had to install an electrical outlet myself.

Quiet cool has 4 series of fans. Classic and Energy Saver are sold to the public, Trident and Stealth Pro are only sold through installers. Classic and Trident appear to be almost identical with a few variations on which models get multiple speeds. Same for the Energy Saver and Stealth. The one I was interested in (Stealth Pro 4.8) has a 3 speed controller where the equivalent model (Energy Saver 4700) only has 2 speeds (high and low).

I made a nice spreadsheet to compare speed, efficiency, price, etc. The end result is the Stealth Pro costs $330 more than the equivalent Energy Saver model. For that, I get:
15 year warranty on fan (vs 10) and 1 year on labor and controls (vs none)
Installation - While I know I'm capable of doing it, I think repetition matters - guys who do this every day do a better job.
3 speeds vs 2. While I think 'medium' speed will be used the least, it's still nice to have.

All in all, a very satisfying experience. And a great whole house fan. On low, it's 2x the CFM of our last house. 3x on medium, almost 4x on high. 74 watts low / 225 medium / 408 high, so it's really most efficient to run it on low at night or early in the morning to draw in cool air.

ne2ca28
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Re: Whole house fan

Post by ne2ca28 » Fri May 25, 2018 3:52 pm

We installed a QuietCool fan in our house in West Los Angeles. Its great and gets us through 90% of summer without needing an air conditioner. I can hardly hear it when its on and I believe the motors have a 10 year warranty.

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