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Complications Replacing Bathroom Fan & Duct

258 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Chupatty
Hi all, I’m replacing this old bathroom vent (currently vents into attic) with a new larger Panasonic fan with a sufficient CFM rating for the master bathroom & will add a 6” insulated duct to vent it out of the roof.

The current fan is 11” both sides whereas the new fan will need 11” on one side but at least 20” on the other side (to accommodate the 6” duct being fixed to the fan’s air outlet.

I think the only way the new fan can fit is to have it rotated 90 degrees vs. the existing fan (i.e. so it vents to the right (which is towards the roof vent)). This would require removing the small piece of wood (circled) to create sufficient space.

This is all new to me as a first-time homeowner so I’d love to get your thoughts on whether this is a wise approach, and if so, how would you suggest removing the wood / going about it. I’d greatly appreciate any advice on this and also any other suggestions for how to make it work!

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Hi all, I’m replacing this old bathroom vent (currently vents into attic) with a new larger Panasonic fan with a sufficient CFM rating for the master bathroom & will add a 6” insulated duct to vent it out of the roof.

The current fan is 11” both sides whereas the new fan will need 11” on one side but at least 20” on the other side (to accommodate the 6” duct being fixed to the fan’s air outlet.

I think the only way the new fan can fit is to have it rotated 90 degrees vs. the existing fan (i.e. so it vents to the right (which is towards the roof vent)). This would require removing the small piece of wood (circled) to create sufficient space.

This is all new to me as a first-time homeowner so I’d love to get your thoughts on whether this is a wise approach, and if so, how would you suggest removing the wood / going about it. I’d greatly appreciate any advice on this and also any other suggestions for how to make it work!

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Yes that can be removed....it was a nailer for the fan to screw into.

Sawzall or it you can get to the nails remove them with a flat bar.

There will also be screws into the drywall but you need to cut more of that away anyways.

Since your turning 90 degrees the new fan should have some mounts that will fit the joist front to back on your picture.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes that can be removed....it was a nailer for the fan to screw into.

Sawzall or it you can get to the nails remove them with a flat bar.

There will also be screws into the drywall but you need to cut more of that away anyways.

Since your turning 90 degrees the new fan should have some mounts that will fit the joist front to back on your picture.
Thank you for the helpful reply! If using a pry bar, do you mean jamming it underneath between the wood and drywall and levering the wood up?

I’ve borrowed a SAWZALL from my neighbor - would that also be suitable to enlarge the drywall hole?

Correct that the new fan will have a mounting bracket that will screw into the top & bottom pieces of wood pictured
 

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The photo isn't high enough resolution to be sure, but the wood framing appears to have been screwed in place. If you're lucky the fan installation was done after the drywall was up and the only screws will be the ones visible at the top, so removing those screws and removing the hopefully visible drywall screws used to secure the drywall to the wood is all that you'll need to do. If you're unlucky, the wood that you want to remove also has screws into the joists from below, which will be hidden by the drywall.

If they are screws, they won’t come out easily with a pry bar and it’ll make a mess. If you don’t already have one, an impact driver for inserting and removing screws is one of the essential tools you’ll need.

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Thank you for the helpful reply! If using a pry bar, do you mean jamming it underneath between the wood and drywall and levering the wood up?

I’ve borrowed a SAWZALL from my neighbor - would that also be suitable to enlarge the drywall hole?

Correct that the new fan will have a mounting bracket that will screw into the top & bottom pieces of wood pictured
Use a razor knife to cut the drywall, get the blocking out anyway you can....not sure if it's nails or screws.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks Mark, yes that area of the attic is particularly sparse. The rest of the attic has much deeper insulation - I plan on redistributing it around the attic once I’ve replaced the fans
 
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