23 June 2009

The Tale of the Attic Fan

photo of attic where fan will goI will be taking a break from working on the berm, so I can have a barrel of fun installing our new attic fan. Yes, it came today and I went up and started taking measurements. What I discovered did not fill me with happiness. In order to install the shutters, I need to have a minimum of 19 ¾". This will allow the shutter to be installed flush with the front of the house. Now, as you can see from this picture, the distance from the stud on the left to the one in the middle is 15". This means that I will have to move that portion of the stud to the right. Since this is a load-bearing wall, I will have to make sure I support it correctly.

photo of attic where fan will goI am no carpenter, nor have I ever claimed to be, but this is not going to be a fun task for me. It is not only the carpentry aspect that has me thinking, but it is the environment that I will be working in. If you take a look at the last picture, that is how I have to travel through this warren of pain (I have to go through 8 of those rafters). I have to walk hunched-over and make sure I stay on the small 2 x 4 that the construction workers were kind enough to leave behind. To add a little more to this fun-fest, the temperature is a good 30° higher in the attic. Today it was only 84° outside, but it was well over 105° in the attic. Too much fun. Anyway, I will need to paint the shutters to match the house and then figure out how I am going to cut the hole in a perfectly good gable.

photo of atticOnce the fan is installed, I will than have to wire it. I was planning on just direct-wiring it (with no switch), but have now decided that I would like to have a little more control, so I will be installing a master on/off switch. In addition, I will also be installing a thermostat override switch. This will allow me to activate the fan during the winter time (I don't have the $90.00 for the humidistat). This, of course, requires running 3 wires and a ground (14/3), instead of just 2 wires and a ground (14/2). Naturally, the Romex I have is 14/2...go figure.

photo of attic fan

Broan-NuTone 353 1140 Cfm Gable-Mounted Powered Attic Ventilators

This is a picture of the attic fan I purchased (plywood was purchased at Home Depot).


  1. The words "move a portion of the stud", "load-bearing wall", and "I am no carpenter" are making me nervous! Your wife is way more trusting than I would be. I'd be handing you a phone book! Hope all goes well!

  2. Wow, well best of luck with the project....I certainly am not that brave!

  3. BeadedTail: Me too! It's not a technically difficult thing to do, it's just that I have never done it before, so I'm a little nervous about it. I just need to remember: measure twice, cut once:)

    Meghann: Thank you, I'll need it:)


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