Buying and Installing a Garage Exhaust Fan

Many home improvement projects are centered in garage areas that have been drafted as workshops so installing exhaust fans becomes an important necessity for proper ventilation and living. It is important to properly buy and install an exhaust fan.

Buying an Exhaust Fan:

Step 1 – Determine Type
The amount of time working in your garage and type of projects you undertake will dictate your exhaust fan choices. If you plan to spend a considerable amount of time in your garage shop, you will need the best ventilation available. Different sized fans that direct air outflow will allow for proper ventilation in closed-in areas where dangerous chemicals are stored.

  • Freestanding – If choosing a freestanding fan, you will need to direct the air flow out through a window or door. Also, make sure all cords can be secured when operating a freestanding fan.
  • Large Shutter Fan – Is used if moisture collects in your closed-in garage area. A good shutter fan running constantly will pull condensation out of the garage effectively.

Step 2 – Comparison Shop
Comparison shopping is a great idea when looking for a workshop exhaust fan. Use online websites and check manufacturer specials or promotions. Depending on the type of fan you choose, and your own skill levels, you may decide to hire a contractor to install an exhaust fan.

Step 3 – Location
Proper exhaust fan operation requires correct installation, especially when you are using a high –end unit that will be secured on a wall or in a ceiling. Ceiling fans are good choices when there is a great deal of height in the structure where it is to be installed. Wall units are great for low-ceiling areas. Determine what works best for your needs depending on the size of your room.

Step 4 – Safety First
Before mounting and wiring your garage exhaust fan, turn off all circuit breakers to prevent any electrical accidents during installation. Remove any insulation in either the ceiling or wall area where the fan will be installed to prevent any fire from happening.

Step 5 – Mounting the Fan
When using a wall fan, make sure the wall cut does not compromise the structure stability. If possible, make use of existing wall studs by install a housing frame – a simple square wood box - that is sturdy enough to handle the weight when attaching the fan. When installing the fan in the ceiling, try to secure it directly to a ceiling beam. If that is not possible, install wooden braces between joists to allow firm attachment for the housing. When making the cut, hold the housing frame firmly against the wall or ceiling area and mark its perimeter carefully. Puncture each corner marked and make sure the cut lines are straight between the punctures before cutting. Once you have the hole, place the housing firmly in the opening. Make all necessary seals to ensure a tight and weatherproof fit.

Step 6 – Wire the Fan
Insert a metal clip on the fan housing to accept an electrical ground. Use only manufacturer approved wiring to connect the fan to a power source. It is highly recommended to run fan wiring to its own independent circuit breaker and not share a direct current source. Make sure to run an on/off wiring set up even if you plan continuous fan operation.