Being surrounded by steamy showers and flushed toilets day in and day out, it’s no surprise that bathrooms are the wettest space in your home. This high humidity is also added to by occasional drips and running sinks.
These major sources of moisture, increase the chance of probable issues: peeling wallpaper, growing mold, chipping paint, and gross smells. And so, being proactive and thinking about available bathroom ventilation options to prevent major issues is the best way forward. That’s exactly what we’ll be talking about today…
5 Common Bathroom Exhaust Fan Venting Options
There are quite a few ways to actually get your bathroom ventilation worries sorted. It’s just a case of flipping one switch usually. And extra moisture plus unwanted odors leave the room without making a problem. However, one of the biggest challenges that make you look for several options is your home building’s design.
One of the most common queries of how to vent a bathroom with no outside access is a fine example of this. Sometimes depending on certain circumstances, you need to make a choice. As not all options will fit well with your home’s design. Let’s talk about more than a few common bathroom ventilation ideas that you can choose from.
Fan Installed in Ceiling, Vent Through Exterior Wall
The ceiling-to-wall configuration is the most common out of all options you have. Here the fan needs installation right on the ceiling. And the vent works through the exterior wall. Usually, it travels straight across the ceiling and instantly into the exterior wall.
There can be one or two extra bends or turns with the vent. The vent also comes with a vent hood that works for keeping unnecessary rain and pests from entering through the hose.
The common downside of this configuration is animal intrusion vulnerability, which is usually a bird. It’s also not very well with exterior rain intrusion preventing too. Sealing in the hood with exterior caulking as well as a proper vent cover can however solve the downsides.
Venting Fan Directly to Roof
The next option you can go for is roof vent installation. There are metal roof vents available for this purpose. They help to keep animals and rain out of your house. This vent needs to be durable to withstand external elements. And so, you cannot go for cheaper materials such as plastic covers.
Insulating duct hose that travels through the attic area is one thing you must pay attention to. There are chances of suffering from moisture problems in the attic otherwise. Because there can be temperature differences in the bathroom and attic. It is important to make sure the space is sealed properly to prevent moisture damage in the attic.
Another problem with this option is that you need to create a hole on the roof. This can be a reason for leaking in the future. Those who ask help from a licensed roofer for installation can sidestep such an issue. As they know how to avoid such a probable situation.
Vertical Installation of Fan Inside Wall
The through-the-wall installation is another way to get vent done inside your bathroom. Here rather than going for a horizontal installation, you install it vertically. Now you can of course buy two types of fans for doing this. The first type is a through-the-wall fan, which come with kits and cover.
You get a tiny duct section and other necessary parts too. These are common for the bathroom, kitchen, garages, mid-room, and other spaces as well. The vent section is usually one or two-foot without bends or turns with this fan installation. And the other type is a low-profile fan.
This can be used as an alternative to exhaust fan in bathroom. However, there are not very revolutionary changes in both. These are less in thickness and fit quite easily in-between wall studs.
You can go for immediate outside vent installation with this type. However, just remember the venting will be a little bit offset. Other ways to try are over the ceiling, through wall routed upwards, and also toward the outside.
Soffit Venting Option
Here comes a not-so-common option for venting installation. It requires local building code checking. This is because not all municipalities allow this very rare type of bathroom exhaust fan venting installation.
The underside of roof overhang is basically the soffit. And this area can include passive venting. Installing a bathroom fan here can cause interference with your existing soffit vent unless you don’t have one.
This isn’t something people usually recommend to do. But if there’s absolutely no other way then you can still make it work fine by getting help from professionals. Also, don’t forget to get soffit installable custom bathroom vent covers. These come with spring loading to make sure prevention of animal. Also, the air intrusion in case of airflow obstacles.
Terminating Attic Vent
Out of all the bathroom venting solutions, this one is my least favorite. And that is because it’s quite an open invitation to trouble in your attic. Usually, building codes and contractors don’t allow such installation.
And that’s because the air directly does not go outside. but loosely lay around attic insulation. This can mean the air is buried under insulation. Eventually, it can bring terrible attic failures and damages if not taken seriously.
However, in some cases, allowing the vent to go near outside but halt just a few inches underneath ridge vent can help. Behind gable vent for a few inches is fine too. It is definitely better than allowing the vent to lay loosely on. Or below attic insulation or even floor.
For windowless bathroom ventilation, it’s quite important to have such solutions. To make sure the hot shower and other condensation creating things are under control.
However, due to certain building code, this isn’t always possible. In most municipalities, you can go for bathroom ventilation window without any trouble. Getting an exhaust fan is also fine with maximum building codes.
However, with window ventilation, it’s actually okay to say that this solution is the very minimum standard. And so, it cannot be something super useful, reliable, or effective. Especially in cold weather, having window ventilation isn’t a very friendly idea to go for. That is why you must try to choose exhaust fan venting options. These are also not crossing any boundaries set by your local municipalities.
So finally, you know about the most common bathroom ventilation options that can be an effective solution for your case. Your best bet is of course trying a way that allows venting outside.
Going for ceiling to wall option or roof vent installation means you’re pretty on the safe side. However, if things are tricky, then don’t hesitate to contact an installation expert. They can pay you a visit, take a look, and then suggest you a way that’s less risky or problematic both in the present and future.