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I was reading a book and the person had a whole house fan which got me thinking and doing research on them. Does anyone have one and how effective are they? We live in MI so according to my research, we are in a very good location for these to cut our a/c usage down by almost 90%. I know that's just marketing and it may be more like 75%, but that's still pretty significant if they are effective.

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Our whole house fan did cut usage by 90%. We have never had our AC on at night. The fan pulls every bit of air out of the house and pulls the cool night air in. Because our house gets really cool at night, we can usually leave our windows open all day. I ran the AC two days last year. Our nights are never higher than the 70's though and most nights are still 60's or lower, even in the summers. Humidity is rarely an issue here. And I am comfortable up to 80 degrees in my house. With the fan, there is always a huge breeze through the house. I am in the mountains in VA. When we lived in the Washington DC suburbs, we had a whole house fan and there were many nights when it never got cool enough to turn it on. We were AC dependents.

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I don't like our whole house fan and don't use it often.

Our is very loud-newer ones may be different, I don't know, but ours is loud and with six kids in the house, that's too much noise for me. It also pulls the door when you shut it, which means when my dc are going in and out, the door is constantly being pulled from them and slammed shut. They could just hold on to the door better, but they don't.

 

You're in Mi., so you may not have these issues, but in Ga. there is a ton of pollen that gets pulled in with it in the spring, and in the summer the humidity is horrendous.

 

These are my issues with it. Dh, otoh, loves it and would use it more often if I didn't object to it so strongly.

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I don't like our whole house fan and don't use it often.

Our is very loud-newer ones may be different, I don't know, but ours is loud and with six kids in the house, that's too much noise for me. It also pulls the door when you shut it, which means when my dc are going in and out, the door is constantly being pulled from them and slammed shut. They could just hold on to the door better, but they don't.

 

You're in Mi., so you may not have these issues, but in Ga. there is a ton of pollen that gets pulled in with it in the spring, and in the summer the humidity is horrendous.

 

These are my issues with it. Dh, otoh, loves it and would use it more often if I didn't object to it so strongly.

 

:iagree: change the 6 kids to 7, and GA to OH and this is my post. ;)

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My parents used this and almost never turned on the air when I was a child. They still use theirs on all but the hottest/most humid days. Of course their home is completely shaded by large trees and doesn't get super hot during the day. We got used to the noise when I was younger, so that wasn't really a problem.

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I don't like our whole house fan and don't use it often.

Our is very loud-newer ones may be different, I don't know, but ours is loud and with six kids in the house, that's too much noise for me. It also pulls the door when you shut it, which means when my dc are going in and out, the door is constantly being pulled from them and slammed shut. They could just hold on to the door better, but they don't.

 

You're in Mi., so you may not have these issues, but in Ga. there is a ton of pollen that gets pulled in with it in the spring, and in the summer the humidity is horrendous.

 

These are my issues with it. Dh, otoh, loves it and would use it more often if I didn't object to it so strongly.

 

We were so excited to have a whole house fan when we moved to Alabama - we'd used our quite a bit in CT (never had C/A), and loved it.

 

Not so here. It does pull in the pollen, the C/A is much more helpful for the allergy sufferers in the family. And the humidity! :tongue_smilie: The fan can't help with that.

 

Sometimes in the spring and fall, I do use ours. But not as much as we'd thought.

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My mom's family home had one of these. She said it was really nice (no ac, so this was it). She did mention that the windows in the house were also larger than what is typically in houses in her current neighborhood (I hadn't thought of that); so your house overall needs to have the right layout/structure for it to be most effective I guess.

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My mom's family home had one of these. She said it was really nice (no ac, so this was it). She did mention that the windows in the house were also larger than what is typically in houses in her current neighborhood (I hadn't thought of that); so your house overall needs to have the right layout/structure for it to be most effective I guess.

 

Hmmm...I'm not sure if we do. I live in a ranch style house and there are windows in every room, but there isn't a ton of cross breezes here. I am able to cool the house down with fans in the windows on each end of the house. So maybe.

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Hmmm...I'm not sure if we do. I live in a ranch style house and there are windows in every room, but there isn't a ton of cross breezes here. I am able to cool the house down with fans in the windows on each end of the house. So maybe.

I don't think the house layout makes that much of a difference. Air is pulled around corners too. I really like our whole-house fan, and at this time of year especially, we really use it. At night, after we turn off the lights (we have mosquitoes here) I open the windows and turn on the whole-house fan. Ours is on a timer, so I leave it on for an hour or so. In the morning if it's still cool outside I turn it on for another hour, then shut it off, close windows, and close window coverings (especially on the sunny side). It will swing a bedroom door closed if that's the only window that's open, but I just make sure I have windows in multiple rooms open, so that's not been a problem.

 

ETA: We have a long, rambling ranch style house, and don't get cross-breezes *anywhere*. I think that's why the fan *does* help so much, since we wouldn't naturally get any real air flow to bring in cooler air without it.

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We had one installed in our house in MI. It did help keep the upstairs cooler but we did not get the kind of saving you are thinking about. In the summer we only ran our a/c for a couple of hours in the afternoon and mainly had the windows open. I think it was worth it. Ours turned on automatically when the attic reached a certain temp. They don't work down here in FL because of the humidity.

Melissa

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We just got one put in last summer. We're in CO, so it gets cool in the evenings, and there's little humidity. We love it. My DH is the "ventilation man" as I call him. He's forever opening and closing windows to get breezes and fresh air. He uses it as soon as the outside temp drops below the inside temp. That's usually right when the sun goes down. It creates a nice breeze in the house, and the air here is fresh and clean smelling, so it's great!

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My parents have one. Their house is much cooler now that they have it. I lived with before they had the fan. It's a huge difference. I can't compare it to AC, because they don't have it.

 

They do have one of the older ones though so it is quite noisy until you get used to it.

 

Oh, and their house is well shaded. Dad strategically planted large trees around the outside of the house back when they bought it many years ago.

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Friends of mine in Tennessee have a whole house fan. They love it but I think they bought special window screens to filter out pollen before they installed the fan.

 

Summer nights aren't very cool in our area of Texas. Not to mention, I would only run the fan during the day. There is no way I could ever sleep with the windows open! I would be scared all night!

 

Ann

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We had one installed in our house in MI. It did help keep the upstairs cooler but we did not get the kind of saving you are thinking about. In the summer we only ran our a/c for a couple of hours in the afternoon and mainly had the windows open. I think it was worth it. Ours turned on automatically when the attic reached a certain temp. They don't work down here in FL because of the humidity.

Melissa

I think maybe you had an attic fan, not a whole-house fan.

Attic fans circulate hot air out of the attic, but don't draw hot air out of the house itself. They are sometimes helpful, but don't do the same thing as whole-house fans. Whole-house fans must have windows open, because they suck air out of the living area, through the attic, and then out.

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We had a tree that shaded part of our house but a tornado took it out 2 years ago. All we have left are smaller trees and a bunch of pine trees that aren't by the house. I really miss our old tree and have thought about planting new trees, but they wouldn't be shade trees for years and years and years. Is it even worth it???

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Haven't got one yet, but have been seriously considering it for a couple years. The Triangle fans get the best reviews by far... and generally speaking, the bigger the fan the quieter (plus you can run a big fan on half speed). You may need additional vents installed in the roof.

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We love ours (we are in southern MI.) We turn it on very early in the morning and open all the windows. It cools down the whole house. Then we lock things up tight, and the house stays cool until mid-afternon. Then we run the air conditioner for a few hours. We can also use it alone without ever needing the AC in the early and late summer.

 

We had an attic fan in our old house (a bungalow.) It didn't do much at all.

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