Q: What is a whole house fan? Is this a standard part of an air conditioning system?
In a question about ceiling fans versus air conditioning in the Going Green section, the expert from Nar said a whole house fan is the best alternative from a green standpoint. Is a whole house fan the standard fan option on your thermostat (meaning part of the air conditioning system) or is it something else? That's the greenest option? Good to know!
A: Separate unit for more efficiency
A Whole House Fan is installed in an attic and essentially sucks the accumulated warm interior air and releases it outside thru the roof and replaces it with cooler air from outside. You open your windows and turn on the fan and you instantly get a whole house of fresher cooler air. This works best when you have cooler air on the outside, but since it works instantly it saves energy over conditioned air because it runs for 10 minutes instead of 2 hours or more. Depending on what region you live it in, it will depend on your savings and how much you would use this in conjunction with your AC unit.
The whole house fan is not the fan setting on your thermostat, but a separate unit that contains powerful fans and exhaust vents to move the air. The current models are easy to install and retro-fit.
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