frequently asked questions
WHOLE HOUSE FANS
How can whole house fans be used as a substitute for air conditioning?
From working in this industry since the early 90’s, we have heard the same account from hundreds of people prior to a fan installation. It usually goes something like this, “In the evening I walk outside and find it’s cool and comfortable, but it’s still incredibly hot in my home.” In the evenings, the outside air in Denver is cool and comfortable 99% of the summer. Imagine replacing the hot, stagnant air trapped in your home and attic with this cool air from outside. Whole house fans are designed specifically to do this in areas like Denver where relative humidity is low and elevations are high. A/C is designed for areas with higher humidity. Whole house fans do the job of cooling your home and keeping it comfortable for around 10 times less electricity than running A/C, which means they cost 10 times less to run. A properly sized whole house fan system cools 10 times faster than A/C can.
Why do many of our customers get fans installed after they have already invested in air conditioning?
Extremely hot air gets trapped in your attic during hot summer days. Through the late afternoon and evening, air conditioning has the chore of battling this heat that is radiating into the home. Because hot air within the home rises to the highest levels and cool air sinks to the lowest levels, air conditioning is fighting a losing battle. Customers relying on A/C alone find that they end up with an extremely hot upper level and extremely cold lower level with an A/C unit that is running continuously (at a $1 per hour!) and susceptible to freezing up. A whole house fan is designed specifically for areas like Denver with relatively low humidity and cooler evenings. A whole house fan is mounted in the attic, which draws fresh and cool outside air in through open doors and windows while forcing the hottest indoor / attic air out of the vents in the attic. This cycle quickly creates comfortable indoor environment, and most importantly, the fan steadily draws heat out of the structure itself so you start the next day with a cool house, delaying or eliminating the need to run air conditioning.
How many windows or doors do I need to open for the fan to work correctly?
Basically, you need to match the cumulative size of open windows and doors to the size of the intake fan shutter.
What type of fans are used?
We sell, install and service two different styles of Whole House Fans: traditional whole house fans by Triangle Engineering, and ducted whole house fans by QuietCool. Both of these whole house fans cool the home in the same manner by pulling cool air up through the home and pushing superheated air out of the attic. The difference is in the configuration of the fan. The traditional fan is located against the ceiling, while the QuietCool fan is suspended from the roof framing in the attic. Both Triangle and QuietCool fans are made in the USA. Triangle fans are constructed from heavy gauge steel with welded fittings. Cheaper store-bought fans use bolted fittings which loosen over time and create excess noise. Our Triangle fans are rubber mounted with sealed fan shaft bearings for a whisper-quiet operation. They have four,deep pitch blades. The fans also have a patented “Auto Belt Tensioning” system which eliminates the need for manual belt adjusting. They have a two-speed, belt-driven, 1/3 or 1/2 horsepower motor. These Triangle fans are the highest grade available on the market which move the most amount of air. QuietCool fans use superior motors and aluminum blades to create a fan that is very quiet, yet still moves a remarkable amount of air.
How noisy are the fan systems?
We sell and install the highest grade, quietest operating fan systems available. This includes shutters, fans and motors. Also, we specifically engineer the framework of the fan so that the finished product is extremely quiet as well as incredibly strong.
Can the system be put on an automatic timer to turn the fan on?
Every fan comes with an auto-shut off timer, but we do not recommend having the fan turn on automatically. In order for the fan to work properly it needs open windows or doors in the home to draw air from, therefore it is necessary to create openings on the home before starting the fan. The cooling effect of a whole house fan is felt immediately once the fan is turned on, so it’s not necessary to run the fan when you aren’t home.
Are the whole house fan motors guarded against overheating?
Each of our Triangle fan UL listed motors comes with a thermal interrupt, so that in the rare case that the motor might overheat it will automatically shut off. Also, the motors are constructed with sealed ball bearings. Because of this, the motors do not require regular oiling and are maintenance free.
How much air do the fans move?
On high speed, the 30″ Triangle whole house fan moves 7,600 cubic feet per minute (cfm). The 36″ moves 9,700 cfm on high, and a 42″ fan moves 12,600 cfm on high. QuietCool offers fans that move between 1,500 and 7,000 cfm. To know how much air is moved by a given QC fan, simply look at the name of the fan. A QC 3.3 moves around 3300 cfm, the 7.0 moves around 7.000 cfm and so on.
Can I see some technical specifications on fan size, cfm, and rpm?
Yes. Please reach out to us and we are happy to help you find the right fan and explain all the technical details associated with your home cooling system.
How many square feet of venting do I have in my house?
A typical home has two square feet of total net free attic ventilation in place, but each home is different. The fan will not work properly if there are not enough openings from which to draw air. The more openings to the outdoors, the more distributed the breeze in the home will be. With a whole house fan, it is possible to direct the breeze through certain rooms or from the basement. To do this, you simply only open the windows in the rooms through which you want to draw cool outside air. Contact us and we will gladly give you a free estimate on your home. Our expert advice is always free.
How are the vents installed?
In most whole house fan system installations, oversize roof vents are installed to create the total amount of net free ventilation that is required for the system to operate as the manufacturers intended. These vents are installed underneath waterproof materials and are completely weatherproof. See our photos in the Attic Fans information for examples. If you have a concrete tile or exotic roof material, we evaluate other options for ventilation first, and can suggest several roofers who can work confidently on these roofs.
What is the difference between an attic fan and a whole house fan?
Though the terminology can be confusing, Attic Fans and Whole House Fans are very different from one-another. Attic Fans are smaller fans mounted on the roof or gable of your home. They work on a thermostat and help to flush out the hot air trapped in the attic but do not pull air through the living area of the home. These systems are ideal for homes that have existing cooling sytems which need help in cooling the home, or for homes that stay naturally cool with the exception of days where the temperature reaches 100+. Whole house fans are located in the ceiling of the home and pull air through the whole house (from the basement to the attic). These fans move anywhere from 3 to 7 times the amount of air as an attic fan, and have many other benefits as outlined in the Whole House Fan System information.
What if I want to cool my attic space only?
In the case that you want to cool the attic space only, contact us and we can talk about installing a Power Vent/Attic Fan. See our page for Attic Fans.
MY HOME AND SAVINGS
How much do the fans cost to run?
Around 4-7 cents per hour to run, depending on the fan that is installed, where you live, and which power price tier you are in. Also, the fans only need to operate a few hours a day in the summer to cool the entire home and allow you a great night’s sleep.
How quickly do whole house fans cool the home?
Our goal is to create a whole house fan system that provides a complete air change in under a three minutes. With this much airflow, cooling will be felt immediately once the fan is started. Since the cooling happens immediately, there is really no reason to run the fan when you aren’t home. Please note that this results is best achieved with a whole house fan system that includes the proper ventilation in the attic.
Will the fan pull air from the basement of my home?
Absolutely. In fact, this is one of the most highly recommended ways to cool your home. Basements are naturally cool in summer. By opening only the basement windows with the fan running, cool air will flow up the stairs and into your living floors.
What do I need to know if my roof is replaced after you have installed a fan?
A crucial part of our fan system is the ventilation in the attic. Building code on ventilation for attic without a fan is much less than you will probably have once a fan system is installed, and in many cases we see roofers replacing the vents in customer’s homes with the bare minimum according to the building code. In those instances your fan will be severely underventilated and most customers will find that their fans become more noisy and much less efficient. When you are having a roof replaced make sure that the roofers install enough ventilation to accommodate the airflow from your whole house fan. There is lot of misinformation on how much ventilation is supplied with ridge vents, for example, so make sure that the total net free area is satisfied for what’s required with the fan you have installed. Feel free to get us involved in the conversation, we can verify and make sure the system isn’t compromised by inadequate ventilation.
Can you install with vaulted ceilings?
Yes, we can. It's deceptive, but even with steep vaulted ceilings, there can be a large attic space. We can also apply proven techniques to install fans vertically or in tight spots so that we can find the right, customized solution for your home.
Can you work with plaster ceilings?
My home has a tile roof. Can you work with that? What about a metal roof?
We work with homes with all types of roofs, though some require that we be creative with soffit and vertical exhaust shutters because working directly with some roof types is not cost-effective. Give us a call and we can find the right solution for your home.
Do I need HOA approval?
Colorado House Bill 08-1270 of August 2008 extends and clarifies Colorado's citizens' existing right to do two separate but related things on their own property: 1) Make their homes more energy-efficient and 2) Install renewable energy generation devices (solar and wind). Energy-efficient measures include "garage or attic fan and any associated vents or louvers," which may be subject to reasonable aesthetic considerations but cannot ban these improvements. Give us a call if you're concerned with HOA approval and we'll help you gather the right information.
What about my allergies?
Most homeowners find that extra ventilation does not exacerbate allergies as they suspected, and recent studies have found that indoor air quality is far inferior to the fresh air outside. Thus, most people experience an improvement with indoor air quality with their whole house fan system. However, if this is clearly a challenge, we have special screens we can install that filter the air better than traditional home screens. Pollentec screens are proven to capture up to 98% of airborne pollen allergens and both large and small particles in the air such as household dust, pollen, dust-mite debris, mold spores, and pet dander.
Is CHC insured?
Yes. We have a full liability insurance policy plus a workman’s comp policy. Our installers are CHC employees!
Is the personal information I give to you safe?
Yes, we guarantee privacy.
What sets CHC apart from its competitors?
Colorado Home Cooling takes the time to assure that the quality of work is always at its highest level. We spend a considerable amount of time training our technicians to make sure you are receiving the most current and up to date installation available. Our products are state of the art and our installation process is the best available in the industry. There are cheaper fans out there, and businesses that will cut corners to save time and materials under the guise of saving the customer money. Colorado Home Cooling does not sacrifice our quality to cut corners in order to offer a lower price. We value our reputation and you will value our professionalism and level of service. In service as in life, you get what you pay for, and our goal is to give you a product that you can enjoy for decades.
Can I speak to some of your satisfied customers?
Yes. Contact us and we’ll gladly get you in touch with them. Also, make sure to see the testimonials page on this website. Another place to see testimonials is on www.angieslist.com, www.yelp.com, and also on www.google.com. Also, CHC has a showroom for our potential customers to see, hear and feel our finished product. Contact us if you’re interested in scheduling an appointment to visit our showroom.
What kind of warranty is included with the fan?
Triangle fans carry a 10 year warranty and the motors have a 1 year warranty. QuietCool Trident Pro fans carry a 15 year bumper-to-bumper warranty. All CHC labor is warrantied for 1 year. Active Ventilation carries a lifetime guarantee against any manufacturer defects. Customer satisfaction is our first priority. Although problems are extremely rare, we will do whatever we can to make sure the customer is happy with the finished product.
Do you provide follow up service with the fans if necessary?
Yes, although it is very rare that fans need follow up service because the bearings in the fans and motors are sealed and the units are designed to be completely self-sufficient. But we are happy to come back to your home in the event that you have any lingering concerns.
What are my payment options?
We accept checks, cash, and credit cards.
What does the process look like from start to finish?
For a new fan, we will collect your address, look at your home on Google Earth and other online resources, and create an initial estimate. We may ask clarifying questions and then will finalize the estimate over the phone or via email within a few hours of your request. We will then schedule an in-person visit to confirm your choice of fan and ventilation system, and we will come equipped with all materials to complete the installation. Unless your home has very unique attributes that we could not have identified prior, the estimate will not increase. Within a few hours, we'll have your whole house fan installed, payment collected, and we'll be out the door. Then, it's up to you to enjoy the fan as much as you want.