Want to save money on your energy costs? One way to do that is by installing an attic fan cover during those months when it’s not needed. But with so many attic fan covers on the market it’s difficult to determine which is best for your home. We’ll take a closer look at what you should look for, how they are installed, and give you our take on the best attic fan cover for your home below.
- 1 Save Energy and Reduce Drafts With the Best Attic Fan Cover for Your Home
- 1.1 What is the Function Does an Attic Fan Cover?
- 1.2 Is Installing an Attic Fan Cover Something that a Home Owner Can Do?
- 1.3 Typical Installation of an Attic Fan Cover
- 1.4 How Much Energy Can Be Saved by Using an Attic Fan Cover?
- 1.5 Here are Some of the Best Attic Fan Covers
Save Energy and Reduce Drafts With the Best Attic Fan Cover for Your Home
You wouldn’t leave a window open in your home during the cold winter so why leave a vent open that can easily let outside air into your home? Stop drafts and save energy with an attic fan cover. Here’s what
What is the Function Does an Attic Fan Cover?
During the hot summer months the attic in your home can get quite hot. In fact, in some homes the temperatures can easily reach over 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This trapped heat in your attic warms everything in your home including your home’s ceiling.
Having an attic fan to reduce the temperature in the attic by exhausting air from the attic to the outside can help to keep your attic cool. But what about during colder months or during the spring and fall of the year? Since most attic fans are controlled by temperature sensors, chances are they won’t run as much during this time.
Inside the home there are attic vents that are not insulated which can allow air leakage and increase your energy costs. The best way to reduce drafts and save on energy costs is to install an attic fan cover over the vent in the ceiling. Since most vents basically lead to the whole house attic making sure the fan ceiling shutter is sealed is a must.
Since the attic fan doesn’t run all time making sure the fan shutter or any vents are covered can help to save energy in your home.
Is Installing an Attic Fan Cover Something that a Home Owner Can Do?
Most of the shutters for attic fans are located in the ceilings of homes. This is usually a square louvered vent that leads to the attic of the home. Most of the best attic fan covers have all the required parts and components to install the cover directly inside the home.
While some of the attic fan covers will require attic access, most are placed on the exterior of the vent itself. One feature you may want to look for when purchasing an attic fan cover is whether it requires attic access.
Some of the tools you’ll likely need when installing an attic fan cover:
- Scissors – For trimming the attic fan cover to fit better (for universal covers)
- Cleaning solution – To clean the vent where the attic fan cover will be attached
- Measuring tape – To measure your shutter cover to fit
- Step ladder – If your home has higher ceilings
As you can imagine installing a attic fan cover is relatively simple and easy. Many of the covers will have detailed instructions and required tools as well.
Typical Installation of an Attic Fan Cover
What you will receive from the supplier is typically a cover that is larger than the vent. This cover can vary in thickness and usually the thicker the cover, the more energy efficient it is. Most of the better attic fan covers are 1/4 inch thick. Some may have reflective backing for better R-Value as well.
Once you have measured the fan shutter from outside to outside you can cut the fan over to fit. Remember to only cut one or two sides. Do not cut more than 2 sides of the cover. Once the fan attic cover is cut to fit, then you’ll need to attach the cover to the vent and make sure that is a good fan shutter seal.
Here are some of the more common ways the cover is attached and some pros and cons of each:
Double Sided Tape
When you use double sided tape to attach the attic fan cover it can work great initially. However, the more the cover is removed and reattached the worse the tape will get. This is especially true if your home is more prone to dust.
If you decide to use double sided tape, sometimes it’s best to use a top-notch brand rather than what comes in the package. For instance, using the Gorilla Glue tape may be better. Just make sure the color matches.
Another common method for attaching the attic fan cover is by using Velcro. Velcro makes it much better to remove and replace the cover over time and is typically better than double sided tape.
One of the biggest problems with Velcro however is how it is attached to the cover. When you need to cut the cover to fit, you’ll also need to attach the Velcro to the edge of the attic fan cover. Many people complain the the Velcro simply doesn’t stick well to the cover since it’s more cloth like texture. In the end, the Velcro doesn’t fail, but the cover doesn’t stick to the Velcro. A good double sided tape can sometimes remedy this problem.
Some of the better attic fan covers will have a magnetic ceiling shutter seal. The cover attaches to the vent using magnets rather than tape or Velcro. While this may seem like a much better concept, it has it’s problems. First, many of the vents are made of plastic. Or they may be aluminum which the magnets will not stick.
Another big problem is that the magnets simply aren’t strong enough during storms when the air pressure in the attic can basically blow the attic cover off. And if you have a ceiling fan nearby, you may not be able to run the ceiling fan on high with magnetic covers
Make Sure the Color Matches
Most ceiling surfaces are white and have either a white or beige attic fan vent. When purchasing an attic fan cover, be sure to match the colors of cover with the ceiling so that it is less noticeable. Although this will not hinder the function of the cover, it can certainly stick out if you choose a color that clashes.
Is Attic Access Required?
A big problem with some of the lower quality attic fan covers is that it requires attic access. There are many unknowns when it comes to installing a attic fan cover in the attic. You may need to deal with electrical wiring and insulation issues. You may not even have flooring in the attic to access the area around the house attic fans. Avoid any cover that requires attic access is recommended.
How Much Energy Can Be Saved by Using an Attic Fan Cover?
Attic ventilation in your home is very important especially during the summer each year. The biggest problem is usually with the fan louver that is installed in your home during the colder months. The area where the fan louver is located will not have any insulation behind it which can be a problem. Basically think of this as a very thin wall in which air drafts can happen and heat is transferred more easily.
Installing an attic fan cover can block much of the radiant heat that passes through the vent. In fact, some of the best attic fan covers can block as much as 95% of radiant heat.
Another key point you’ll need to consider when purchasing an attic fan cover is whether the cover is insulated or not. Make sure the cover you choose is insulated and if there is an R-Value given for the cover, you can use this value to determine which is more energy efficient in most cases. Higher R-Values are better.
Most attic fan covers are relatively inexpensive and only require a small amount of time to install. So you’ll enjoy energy savings for many years to come with a properly installed attic fan cover with a very small investment.
As you can see there are a lot of things you should consider when installing and purchasing an attic fan cover for your home. While choosing the best attic fan for your home will depend on several factors, we hope that this post has given you a better insight for what you should look for when choosing an attic fan cover for your home. We’ve included some of the top attic fan covers below:
Here are Some of the Best Attic Fan Covers