Do Attic Fans Really Work?

There are always some salesmen who will try to convince you to buy anything with their charming jibber-jabber and you may miss the whole point of the attic fans being functional at all with all the sweet talks.

Here, the actual question is, do attic fans really work?

Attic fans do work by exerting hot air from your attic which creates a void into the house and at that time outside cooler air enters the house from windows and doors. But if your house is not well sealed and insulated and is full of gaps, then it won’t work at all.

To know more about attic fans, let’s dive into the article right away.

Do Attic Fans Really work?

Yes, they definitely do. Attic fans help circulate the inside air and ventilate the attic to keep the house temperature similar to the outside.

As the roof gets very hot during the summer, getting an attic fan may help you reduce the hot and humid situation of your sweet home.

But you don’t actually need to install one if you are living in a climate where the temperature doesn’t get higher than 80 degrees and you have enough ridge vents or soffit vents installed in your house.

Attic fans work in two different methods, electric and solar-powered. Electric attic fans will cost you an extra monthly bill and they come with a limited-time warranty.

Whereas, solar-powered attic fans run all around the year without any extra bill and they come with a longer warranty.

But which one do you actually need? It mostly depends on the house and the climate you live in. But remember, attic fans are totally useless if you are not living in very humid weather and you already have sufficient ridge vents at your home.

You may need to install attic fans if your house has a very poor ventilation system and the usual temperature goes higher than 80 degrees.

Are Attic Fans a Waste of Money?

Attic Fans

The answer is a bit tricky, but in most cases, it’s yes. Let’s see how attic fans work so that we can clear out the confusion.

Attic fans work by exerting the humid air from the attic.

In this way, the fan gets rid of the hot, moist environment. And to run this process smoothly, attic fans need to be set up in a house that is well sealed and insulated and has good attic vents.

Attic fan uses the vents in the attic to drive in the cooler air from the outside because due to humid weather, sometimes the inside attic air is so much hotter than outside air. In this case, your house needs to be well sealed and insulated and this is a very important thing to consider.

Because if your house is full of gaps between the attic and has an air conditioner running throughout the day, then the attic fan will suck out the cool air condition air from the house, raise your electricity bill higher, and eventually doesn’t ventilate your house at all.

Instead of that, your home gets hotter and puts your money in the drain. So, if you don’t know when or whether you need an attic fan, it’s a complete waste of your hard-earned money.

Before you install an attic fan in your house, make sure you do the proper research on whether you actually need it or not. Otherwise, it’s just flushing your money down the drain.

Do Attic Fans Help?

They sure do if you know how and when to use them. It’s kind of unfair if you call them completely useless because they didn’t work at your house.

Attic fans will work perfectly in your house if your house is well sealed and insulated and has good attic vents. But if not, you are going to face trouble while using attic fans and will lose a huge amount of money over time.

You don’t actually need attic fans if you already have sufficient ridge and soffit vents in your house. So, try to concentrate on these matters when you are considering getting an attic fan for your house.

This consideration will save you from spending a huge load of money that you can use on your dream vacation or anything you like.

When Should You Use an Attic Fan?

Attic Fan

If you get an attic fan also known as a whole house fan, you need to know when you should use it. Because of improper usage, it’s a total wastage of money, and your fan can also get damaged. So, let’s see when you should use your attic fan.

Run It All Day

You can fan the whole day when it’s summer. The scorching heat outside and the humid air make life miserable enough. And attic fans are great for keeping your house nice and cool during the warmer season.

So, keep the fan running all day during hot summer days.

When It’s Hot


Sometimes your attic gets hot because of improper ventilation and the attic air gets hotter than the outside air. In that case, you can run the attic fan until your attic cools down. Usually, you won’t need to run it after sunset in this situation.

To Prevent Ice Damage

Your warm attic can build up ice dams during winter. That time you can run the attic fan until the ice melts down with the hot air that comes out of the fan.

But make sure you turn off the fan after melting the ice dams. Otherwise, your house might get even colder during the cold season.

Thermostatic Control

You must adjust your attic fan a few times per year if your fan is thermostatically controlled. During the summer, the fan should run whenever the attic temperature rises over the degree of comfort desirable for the interior living quarters.

For example, if the air conditioner thermostat of your home is set at 74°F, the attic fan has to be set to 75°F. To prevent ice damming on the roof during the winter, you have to set the attic fan thermostat below the freezing point.

Do Solar Power Attic Fans Really Work?

Solar Attic Fan

Yes, they do. But they are nothing different than electric attic fans. It’s all bells and whistles when the salesmen try to sell them to you.

They do have a good side that they don’t need electric power to function as they can run depending on the sunlight and it’s very good for the environment. And they work exactly like the electric ones so you can go for either one.

If you are trying to go green then you can go for a solar attic fan. It will also save you money in the long run. But you don’t need to get a solar attic fan if you already have enough ridge vents in your house. It will be a foolish decision to go for a solar attic fan in that case.

Pros and Cons of Using Attic Fans

You should always take a look at the pros and cons of a particular product before buying it. You can avoid being tricked by the sweet talks of the salesman if you already know the upsides and downsides of attic fans.

Let’s see the advantages and disadvantages of attic fans.

Things we like
  • Installing an attic fan can help you prevent premature aging of your roof.
  • Attic fans will keep your house cooler on the hot summer days.
  • These fans are able to stop mold growth in your attic.
  • Attic fans not only keep your house cool, but they can also help in melting ice dams on your roof.
Things we didn't like
  • Attic fans can produce carbon monoxide if you use natural gas in your house, which is very harmful to your health.
  • They may cost you a huge electric bill.
  • Attic fans can increase the possibility of roof leak risk.

Final Words

Hope the article helped you figure out if attic fans really work. Now you can decide without any hesitation whether you should buy an attic fan or not. But make sure you do the proper research before buying an attic fan.

Otherwise, you are going to lose a huge load of money and that’s not something you want. And if you do get one, maintain it properly so that the fan can last longer.

Jessica Avila

Jessica Avila is a Home Improvement content writer, I am well-versed in a wide range of topics within the industry. I will help you specially Dining and Drawing area.

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