How Exhaust Fans Can Lower Your Electric Bill

exhaust fanBecause most exhaust fans run on electricity, it may not be obvious at first how these devices can save you money. In the Los Angeles area’s hot, humid summers, though, these fans are valuable assets.

Greater Comfort, Greater Savings

Your home’s exhaust fans remove stale, humid air in order to improve your overall indoor air quality. The fans in your kitchen and bathroom, in particular, remove the humidity created when you cook or take a shower.

Excess humidity not only encourages the growth of mold and bacteria, but it also makes you less comfortable. In a humid environment, your body can’t cool itself as efficiently, which leaves you feeling hot and sticky. As a result, you’re likely to lower your air conditioner’s thermostat temperature to compensate.

Using your exhaust fans correctly keeps your indoor humidity down to a healthy level, so you can raise your A/C temperature without sacrificing comfort. For every degree you raise the A/C temperature for an eight-hour period, you could trim your electric bill by 3 to 5 percent.

If you use electric heating, you’ll benefit in winter, too. Damp air makes you feel chillier, so correcting you home’s humidity reduces your dependency on your heating system.

Getting the Most From Your Fans

After you cook a meal or take a shower, run your kitchen or bathroom fan for 15 minutes. Don’t run them much longer than this, though, or you’ll let in more moisture and air contaminants than you let out.

Make sure your fans are correctly sized. Undersized fans won’t move enough air to manage the room’s humidity. As a rule, a bathroom fan should be able to replace the room’s air 8 times per hour, while a kitchen fan should replace it 15 times per hour. You can determine the right capacity for your fan, in CFM (cubic feet per minute), by dividing the room’s volume by 60, then multiplying it by either 8 or 15.

Use your exhaust fans regularly, and you’ll enjoy greater comfort, cleaner air, and lower electric bills.