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Carefree University
A place to find answers 
for common electrical questions.

Keep your cool with Whole House Fans and Attic Fans

What is the difference between a whole house fan and an attic fan?

These 2 terms are not interchangeable although many people think they are and this can cause confusion.

Whole house fan

A whole house fan is a motorized electric fan that mounts in the ceiling of the uppermost living area in your home. It generally has louvers that open to the attic when the fan is running. The purpose of a whole house fan is to draw cooler air from the lower reaches of the house up to the higher (and hotter) areas whilst pushing the hotter air in the attic out through attic vents. For a whole house fan to work properly it needs a window or windows open in the house to draw air in and vents in the roof to push air out of the attic. Most homes do not have enough vents to allow modern whole house fans to function at their full potential and in most cases additional passive vents or power vent(s) must be installed.

Attic Fan

An attic fan or power vent is a fan that pulls air from

the attic and pushes it outside while drawing fresh

air into the attic through vents. Attic fans are usually

installed on the roof. A hole is cut in the roof and fan

is installed and wired for electricity. Attic fans can also

be installed inside the attic to push the air out through

a gable vent.


A proper whole house fan installation usually costs between $900 and $2500.

An attic fan will usually cost between $350 and $600 installed.

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Attic fan electrical electrician coupon
Attic fan electrical electrician coupon