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Old 01-16-2012, 05:03 PM   #1
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Whole house Fan Maintenance or replace?


Our house was built in 1982 and has a whole house fan upstairs. The on/off switch is in the garage and we have it taped to the "off" position because the fan has never turned on since we bought the house.

It most definitely needs cleaned, but is there something specific I should look at to see if it will be usable We don't have a/c so we have resorted to floor and table top fans and also have a window a/c unit that we put in the living room window. So having a whole house fan suck the hotness out of the house in the summer would be just lovely!

I just don't know what to look for when I get up in the attic to start looking at it. Or is a whole house fan beyond maintenance and should just be removed and we deal with the hot until we can afford to have a/c installed?

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Old 01-16-2012, 05:12 PM   #2
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Whole house Fan Maintenance or replace?


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Originally Posted by sheiladderr View Post
Our house was built in 1982 and has a whole house fan upstairs. The on/off switch is in the garage and we have it taped to the "off" position because the fan has never turned on since we bought the house.

It most definitely needs cleaned, but is there something specific I should look at to see if it will be usable We don't have a/c so we have resorted to floor and table top fans and also have a window a/c unit that we put in the living room window. So having a whole house fan suck the hotness out of the house in the summer would be just lovely!

I just don't know what to look for when I get up in the attic to start looking at it. Or is a whole house fan beyond maintenance and should just be removed and we deal with the hot until we can afford to have a/c installed?
well, yes have it cleaned and have the belts changed (if it uses belts) have the motor and louvers oiled and inspected. whole house fans in the right climate are a God send .......they can reduce humidity and crate a cool breeze, but on a hot stuffy day nothing beats central a/c.

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Old 01-16-2012, 07:34 PM   #3
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Whole house Fan Maintenance or replace?


You might be surprised at how little maintanence it'll take to fire it up.

I put a heavy duty model in my previous house ( all ball bearing ) and ran it for a good 15 yrs.

I also machined up some oilite bronze bearings for a friends fan and its still going about 20 years later.

You should wire a timer into it , Grainger has them.
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:29 AM   #4
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Whole house Fan Maintenance or replace?


Thank you! Can't wait to try it this summer!
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:43 AM   #5
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Whole house Fan Maintenance or replace?


There's not all that much to go wrong with them so it's worth a few min to work on it.
The belt is the main thing that's going to make noise, Since it's been sitting for a long time it's developed a set and would make a racket if you tryed running it now. I'd just take it off and go to any automotive type store and they can match it for you.
Before you do take it off have a look at where the bolts are setting in the elongated slots if there set at the max, then someone has put on the wrong sized belt at some point, also look at the way it's setting in the pulley, It should be about even with the top of the pulley.
What often happens is someone has installed the wrong belt. Belts come in differant lengths and widths.
Wrong belt and it's going to squeal on start up and make noise while running.
You may find the fans are covered with greasy dust. Wipe off what you can then spray some orange cleaner on it to cut the grease.
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