Whole House Fan Switch Location - Where should I put it??

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Old 08-13-14, 03:03 PM
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Whole House Fan Switch Location - Where should I put it??

I'm just finishing up a whole house fan (WHF) install and I am trying to figure out where to put the switch. Here is a crude drawing of my layout:



The WHF is in the ceiling above the stairs, so I was thinking of having the switch somewhere at the top of the stairs in the upstairs hallway. The switch will be a 2-gang box consisting of an off/hi/low switch and a timer.

My initial thought was to put it next to the existing light switch, making that box a 3-gang box, but that seemed too accessible (if that makes sense). Since the fan won't be used all the time (only during summer evenings), having it next to a light switch that is used daily might not be the best option. I could just see someone not familiar with it turning it on accidentally.

Another option would be to put it above the light switch, higher on the wall. Or just put it by itself on the other two locations I marked.

I was hoping someone could offer up some advice for me. I guess I was hoping for a location more hidden, but I'm not seeing a good spot with my layout.
 
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Old 08-13-14, 03:12 PM
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I would start with two ideas:
1. What's the easiest location for running wire?
2. Where is a person most likely to be when the thought of turning it on occurs to them?
 
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Old 08-13-14, 04:01 PM
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I like the spot near the top of the steps near the bathroom. Kind of out of the travel path but easy to see if the fan comes on when the switch is operated.
 
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Old 08-13-14, 04:12 PM
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I would start with two ideas:
1. What's the easiest location for running wire?
2. Where is a person most likely to be when the thought of turning it on occurs to them?
Thanks for the response.

1. Fishing a wire to any of the upstairs walls is simple since I have full access above them.

2. I thought about this as well. So before you can turn the fan on, the house windows must be open. I foresee opening the downstairs windows, then walking upstairs to open the windows up there, then turning on the fan. So having the switch upstairs kind of makes sense. Also, say you are upstairs getting ready for bed and you want to turn the fan on or extend the time it is on (assuming the necessary windows are open), then you wouldn't have to walk downstairs.
 
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Old 08-13-14, 04:17 PM
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I like the spot near the top of the steps near the bathroom. Kind of out of the travel path but easy to see if the fan comes on when the switch is operated.
Me too. The only issue would be if someone mistakes it for the bathroom switch (that is the guest bathroom...yes, no bathroom downstairs...). But, I'm probably just overthinking it.

Would you put it at the same level as a light switch? Or higher?
 
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Old 08-13-14, 06:03 PM
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The only issue would be if someone mistakes it for the bathroom switch
You could always put a thermostat guard over it and not lock it.

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Old 08-13-14, 06:08 PM
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The fan timer should be high on the wall. It needs to be out of reach of the little ones.

I usually install them just over 6' from the floor.
 
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Old 08-13-14, 08:53 PM
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i have a 12 hour timer with a lock on.

i have also used a line voltage t-stat for a fan then it will go off when it get as cool as you want.
 
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Old 08-14-14, 01:48 PM
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Thanks everyone for the input.

After thinking about it a bit more, as long as I put it higher up off the floor (6' like PJmax said), then it won't matter too much where I put it. It won't be the typical height of a light switch that everyone is use to.

I'm leaning toward the wall to the right of the bathroom door, at the moment.
 
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Old 08-20-14, 09:50 AM
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I ended up putting the switch right above the hallway light switch, just to the right as you walk up the stairs. It was between this location and the spot to the right of the bathroom, but I figured it would be less noticeable on the side, since when you walk up the stairs you would be looking at the wall in front of you.

I put it up at around 5 1/2'. Any higher seemed too high. Since there was an existing switch it was a piece of cake to run a wire down through the wall.

So far I am liking the position. It doesn't stand out like I was expecting and I don't foresee anyone mistaking it for a light switch.


 
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Old 08-20-14, 10:05 AM
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Looks good to me - thanks for the update.
 
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Old 08-20-14, 11:57 PM
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looks great.....................................................................................................................................
 
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