Does a Whole House Fan Work in Every Season?

whole house fan example headerInstalling a whole house fan can help cool your home in the summer and can also be used during other seasons to keep your home comfortable and help reduce your energy bills.

Wondering how to get the best use out of your whole house fan? Here are some top tips for using it in every season.

What is a whole house fan, and how does it work?

Whole house fans are large, powerful fans that can cool your entire home. In general, they work by blowing out hot air from the attic and replacing it with cooler air drawn in through windows.

whole house fan breeze meme
Whole house fans are used in homes with a high-pitched roof and are more efficient than air conditioners or window units. They can also be combined with these appliances to maximize cooling efficiency.

For maximum effectiveness, it’s essential to make sure that your attic has adequate ventilation before installing a whole-house fan.

whole house fan in an attic
Whole house fans are an effective and inexpensive way to cool your home during the summer.

Use During the Night to Naturally Cool your Home and Lower Energy Bills

Most of us think about using a whole house fan during the day to cool our homes, but we don’t think about using them at night.

Using a whole house fan at night is a great way to naturally cool your home and lower energy bills.

During the day, the sun heats up your home, making it harder for air conditioners to keep it cool. When you use a whole house fan at night, it draws in cooler outside air and pushes it through your ducts and into your rooms, which helps reduce the temperature.

house circulation example with a whole house fan

How to Use a Whole House Fan in the Winter

Whole house fans are designed to help your home stay cool in the summer, but they’re also helpful for your home in the winter.

Get Rid of Stale Air

Whole house fans are an excellent way to get rid of stale air in your home. In winter, the warm air you want to feel during the day is trapped inside by windows, doors, and walls. But eventually, this air becomes tainted by indoor pollutants.

Whole house fans work by pulling this stale warm air out of your home and replacing it with fresh air from outside.

Ventilating your home with fresher air helps you get a better night’s sleep and prevents bugs and viruses from hanging around.

Reduces Moisture Buildup

Whole house fans have been used for decades as an alternative to air conditioners and dehumidifiers. They work by taking advantage of the natural pressure differential between the inside and outside of your home.

This differential causes warm air near the roofline to rise through the attic, creating a pressure imbalance that pulls in fresh air from outside through the open windows on lower floors.

moisture and mold indoors use a whole house fan to prevent
This allows cool, dry air to come in through windows and doors. This helps prevent mold and mildew from growing on walls or floors. It also lessens the chance of water damage from leaks or condensation caused by high humidity levels.

Vent Cooking Smells

Whole house fans can also be used to help get rid of cooking smells in your home. They easily remove odors from the kitchen and dining areas, leaving behind a fresher scent.

cooking smell meme

They do this by drawing air into your home’s attic space and pushing it out through louvers or vents on the roof. As air is pulled through these vents, it causes positive pressure that removes cooking smells and other pollutants from your kitchen and dining area, eliminating them from your home altogether.

Extra Operating Tips

You’ll want to use your whole house fan safely to avoid potential problems or injuries. Here are some things you should know before using a whole house fan.

Close the Fireplace Flue when Using a Whole House Fan

Many homeowners are surprised to learn that a whole house fan should be used with the fireplace flue closed.

fireplace safety using a whole house fan
The reason for this is simple – the powerful suction of a fan can drag down lumps of soot and ash. Unfortunately, it also increases the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Don’t Use Your Whole House Fan When the Humidity is High

A whole house fan is a great way to help cool down your home during the hot summer months, but it can also worsen things if you use it when the humidity is high.


Because the humid air will be sucked into your home and blown out through the attic and roof vents. This means that it doesn’t circulate throughout your entire house, which can lead to mold growth.

Want to find out more about whole house fans? Contact the HVAC experts at Bell Bros today.