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Do Solar Attic Fans Work on Cloudy Days?

Yes. Superior quality multi-crystalline solar cell modules provide the power for all Attics And More solar fans. Because these panels have high-penetration light sensitivity from morning to evening, there is no need to adjust the angle of the panel to meet the sun’s rays. When the sun starts to rise, your Attics And More solar fan starts its day as well.

Multiple layers of high tech aerospace grade material, including low iron super glass, sandwich our imbedded solar panels to provide highly sensitive light penetration. This proprietary process also makes Attics And More’s solar fans weather proof in even the most sever weather conditions.

Receive a no-cost solar attic fan.

Contact Michele DuCoin at 856-809-2744 to schedule your free attic inspection and learn how to receive a no-cost solar attic fan!

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How Solar Attic Fans Work (And Why You Need One)

This article will take approximately 4 minutes to read. By the end of this article, you will learn how to improve the comfort of your home, save money, protect your home, reduce your carbon footprint, and make your home safer.

 

All year long in the Delaware Valley, your roof is absorbing heat from the sun. That energy can do a lot more for your home than heat up your shingles — if you know how to use it.

With the right tools, homeowners can create cost savings and a comfier home. One of the best tools to implement is a solar attic fan. Solar attic fans revamp your attic’s temperature control and ventilation processes, saving energy and ultimately costs down the road.

You may think your attic’s insulation is enough to keep the heat out of your home, but the insulation only slows the process down rather than stopping it completely. According to HGTV, your attic’s temperature could rise up to 150°F if not properly ventilated. That heat works its way into your home where it forces the air conditioner to work harder, and as a result, your energy bills will go through the roof (no pun intended). Here’s where the solar attic fan comes into play.

So a solar attic fan helps make a home energy efficient, healthier, and stronger. That sounds great on paper — but how does it actually work?

At Attics And More, we know homeowners want the hard facts. So we’re here to give it to you.

Solar attic fan basics

How attic ventilation works

The Building Science Corporation explains the importance of year-round ventilation. In cool climates, ventilation allows the moisture from the living space to escape through the attic. In warm climates, ventilation is necessary to push out the hot air that becomes trapped in the attic. It is imperative for homeowners in the Delaware Valley to reap the benefits of ventilation throughout the year, especially with the common occurrence of experiencing all four seasons in the course of a week.

Ventilation allows a home to breathe and improves the quality of life of your loved ones inside the home. Along with controlling heating and cooling costs, proper ventilation also ensures homeowners get the maximum amount of life out of their roofing materials.

The importance of attic ventilation has been studied since the 1930s, and research architect William B. Rose quickly discovered that an attic with proper ventilation has little to no ‘trouble’ compared to an attic that is not ventilated.

Why your attic needs ventilation

What happens to an attic that is not properly ventilated? William B. Rose lists potential problems in his research ranging from failure of roofing, buckling of roofing, rotting of wood materials, and moisture accumulation in insulation.

A poorly ventilated attic could also allow for the growth of mildew and rot. Mildew and rot not only impact the air quality in the attic but could also decrease the air quality of the home’s living spaces.

The benefit of having a well-ventilated attic is further proven by research from the University of Florida where it was found that “conditions in a ventilated attic are stable through seasonal changes and promotes cost-effective, energy efficient climate control of unconditioned spaces in hot, humid regions.”

How to properly ventilate your attic

Fortunately, there is a simple solution. A solar attic fan works to lower the temperature of your home, keeps your attic dry and ventilated, and helps to maintain the structure of your roof. The main function of a solar attic fan, explained by Energy Star, is to cool down a hot attic by pushing hot air from the attic outside and drawing in cooler air from outside. By providing steady and constant airflow into the attic, a solar attic fan causes warm and moist air to be vented out.

One of our solar attic fan installations on a home in southern New Jersey.

Why you should choose a solar attic fan

Solar attic fans improve the comfort of your home

By moving hot, stuffy air out of the attic and improving ventilation, solar attic fans work to decrease the attic’s temperature. Regulating the temperature of the attic helps the lower level rooms and occupants in your home feel cooler and more comfortable.

Solar attic fans help you save money

After installation, solar attic fans are free to operate since they use the power of the sun for efficient operation. Homeowners in New Jersey are eligible for a 30% federal tax credit through December 31, 2019, for solar attic fan installation. A solar attic fan also eliminates the need for your air conditioner to overcompensate for heat entering the home — leading to lower energy bills.

Solar attic fans protect your home

Solar attic fans prevent moisture-related damage from damaging the roof. Having a solar attic fan expels moist, warm air from the attic year-round and prevents the growth of mold and mildew, and significantly reduces the chance of rotting roofing materials.

Solar attic fans help you save energy

Solar fans reduce your carbon footprint as well as your consumption of fossil fuel. Energy Star acknowledges that installing an attic fan helps to save energy by preventing your air conditioner from working overtime — as previously mentioned, this saves you money on your energy bills, but it also makes a big difference in your energy use.

Solar attic fans are safe

It is important to note that a conventional electric fan has the potential to pull carbon monoxide and dangerous fumes from the basement or ground-level gas appliances through your home. Solar attic fans move air gently, keep your attic pressure at a safe level, and provide effective airflow without endangering your loved ones.

Feeling intrigued?

We offer a free in-home attic inspection and assessment.

To find out if a solar attic fan is right for your home, contact Michele DuCoin at 856-809-2744 or send an email directly to Michele by clicking here. We like saving homeowners in the Delaware Valley a pretty penny without sales gimmicks or pressure.

 

Written by Samantha Brumbaugh and Michele DuCoin

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Why Attic Fans Are Important During Delaware Valley Winters

Written by Michele DuCoin and Samantha Brumbaugh

Many homeowners install attic fans in the summer because they are designed to vent out accumulated hot air in the attic. However, too few homeowners know that attic fans have year-round value.

In the wintertime, the role of an attic fan is reversed — this is arguably the most important time of year to have one. This is especially the case in New Jersey’s Delaware Valley. With Northeast winter temperatures ranging from bone-chilling cold to almost spring-like sunny days, an attic fan is essential to prevent damage to your home and to help you save money on your energy bills. 

What do attic fans do?

Attic fans work to equalize the temperature inside and outside of your home. The New Jersey Field Guide for Energy Auditors and Inspectors explains the importance of a properly ventilated attic, stating that “Attic ventilation is supposed to remove moisture from the attic during the heating season and to remove solar heat from the attic during the cooling season.”

Attic ventilation impacts a home’s energy efficiency and attics are often one of the most poorly ventilated areas of a home. Ventilation is essentially what allows a home to breathe and this is vital for a healthier living environment, a stronger and longer lasting home, and reduced energy costs. The main function of proper home ventilation is to retain cool, clean air and remove heat, moisture, and pollution.

There are three different types of ventilation that each uniquely works to improve the state of your home and the life of its inhabitants. The first type of ventilation is natural ventilation. Examples of natural ventilation include windows, screen doors, and pet doors. Natural ventilation is present in all homes to some degree. The second type of ventilation is whole-home ventilation and this is the most common form of ventilation found in modern housing. Whole-home ventilation includes exhaust ducts and vents throughout the home that work to circulate airflow and provide deliberate ventilation. The third type of ventilation is spot ventilation. Spot ventilation provides ventilation to a specific area of the home such as attics and basements.

An attic fan is a type of spot ventilation and its primary function is to remove moisture and hot air from the attic. They work simply by pushing out hot air from the attic and pulling in cooler air from outside. The constant exchange of moist, warm air from the attic with dry, cool air from outside prevents condensation. This same process also helps to prevent ice dams from forming by keeping the attic at an even temperature. Having an attic fan in the cooler months prevents the likelihood of costly home repairs and structural damage.

A look at one of Attics And More’s technicians installing a solar attic fan.

What could happen without an attic fan?

Condensation. In the winter, heat rises through a home and takes moisture and humidity along with it. The moisture and humidity originate from spaces like the kitchen, laundry room, and bathroom showers in addition to the heat that is constantly running in your home. When the humidity rises and increases in a space such as an attic, moisture condenses out of the trapped air and drips onto insulation and the building structure itself. 

The Department of Energy states that proper ventilation is one important piece of having a moisture control strategy. Without a strong moisture control strategy, your home is at risk for a whole host of problems.

If the insulation absorbs too much water, it becomes less effective and ultimately leads to heat loss in the home. If the structure of the home begins to absorb water it can result in wood rot, mold and fungus growth, and the breakdown of roofing materials altogether.

Water damage due to water leaking through a roof. [source]

Ice dams. When warm indoor air rises to the peak of an attic, snow on the heated part of the roof melts and flows down to a part of the roof that is below 32°F. The process of snow thawing and refreezing causes an ice dam.

Ice dams prevent proper drainage through gutters and downspouts and can wreak havoc on your home’s eaves, gutters, and roofing. Eventually, the water pushes its way into the attic through cracks in the roof and could then seep into your ceiling and interior walls. A solar attic fan prevents the attic from becoming warm enough to cause ice dams. 

Concentrated hot air in the attic could also heat up space under roof shingles. Over time, this will cause the shingles to become brittle and ineffective, ultimately shortening the lifespan of your roof.

Photo of ice damming on a roof. [source]

Why choose a solar attic fan?

According to the State of New Jersey Construction Code Communicator, “adequate attic ventilation is a long-standing requirement in building codes for moisture control.” It is imperative to have a properly ventilated attic at all times of the year.  All it takes to prevent attic-related winter woes is to install a solar attic fan on your home. Solar attic fans draw their power from the energy of the sun, cost nothing to run, and are an excellent way to improve a home’s energy efficiency all year long. Compared to solar attic fans, the increased costs to run electric-powered attic fans offset the cooling benefit they provide. Solar attic fans save energy and help you save money in the long run.

Choose Delaware Valley’s Best

Call us at 856-809-2744 or click here to schedule a free attic inspection and to learn how to prevent condensation and ice damming from causing your home the winter blues.