Most exhaust fans work best when placed near the bathing area to maximize their effectiveness. In such a position, exhaust fans will remove the moisture and odors and add to the home’s safety and occupants by reducing fumes from cleaning agents that could potentially cause health-related issues.
However, can you install an exhaust fan with light directly above a shower and still eliminate moisture to the outside of the house?
You can place a fan directly over the bathtub or shower base only if it’s UL listed for installation over a tub or shower. If the bathroom has both a tub and shower or a shower and a whirlpool tub, the fan should go somewhere between the two fixtures. Units that include any heating function cannot be installed over a tub or shower.
Why You Need a Bathroom Fan
Bathroom fans are essential devices for any home. Here are a few reasons why you need a bathroom fan.
- Proper air circulation. Bathrooms are tightly closed and receive a lot of moisture from the shower. This often leads to the accumulation of stale air in bathrooms. The air in the bathroom may also be smelly because of the dirt. A bathroom fan can help remove the stale and smelly air and allow fresh air currents to flow into your bathroom.
- Improved look of bathrooms. Some bathroom fans have integrated LED lights with unique design features. Such LED lights can be used to enhance the look and feel of your bathroom.
- A greater level of control. Modern bathroom fans that come with integrated LED lights allow users to control the features differently. One can separately operate the fan and the lamp using simple on-the-wall controls. This convenience level helps you control the lighting levels in your bathroom and ensure that excess moisture is eliminated.
How to Size a Bathroom Exhaust Fan
Bathroom fans are sized according to the amount of air that they can move every minute. The Cubic Feet per Minute measures refer to air volume that the fan moves in every 60 seconds. Fans with high CFM scores are ideal for large bathrooms.
Getting the right size of a fan in terms of CFM ensures that your bathroom is properly ventilated. If you use a small fan in a large bathroom, the air quality will remain poor even if you let the fan run nonstop. Similarly, using large fans in small bathrooms amounts to wastage of electric power because such fans consume a lot of wattages.
Here is a simple procedure that you can use to size a bathroom exhaust fan.
- Calculate the total volume of the bathroom. This process entails multiplying the length and width, and height of your bathroom. For practical purposes, assume that your bathroom measures 10 feet by 10 feet by 10 feet. Therefore, the total volume would be 1000 square feet.
- Multiply the volume of your room with 8. Figure 8 is the standard number of air changes per hour. This gives you 8,000.
- Divide your answer with 60 to determine the correct CFM needed for your bathroom. in your case, the final solution would be about 133 CFM.
- Adjust the final CFM based on the conditions of the bathroom. If the bathroom is poorly insulated, add about 50 units to get the final CFM required to ventilate the space properly.
Things to Consider when Choosing a Bathroom Exhaust Fan
Getting the right bathroom fan can help you have an ideal indoor environment in your bathroom. With many brands with different specifications available on the market, getting a suitable device may be a herculean task.
Here are a few things that you should consider when choosing a bathroom fan.
Bathroom exhaust fans can be installed in two ways: through the wall or on the ceiling. Installing an exhaust fan through the wall is more demanding than mounting it on the ceiling. When installing your fan through the ceiling, there are several technical details that you must get right for the fan to work correctly.
After choosing between the ceiling and through-the-wall fans, go for brands that can be easily installed to save time and costs.
The noise level of exhaust fans is measured in sones. The higher the sones rating, the louder the fan is when operating. A general rule of thumb is to go for fans that have the lowest possible sones rating.
Fans that have a sones rating of less than two are considered quiet models. Fans with sones rating of 5 and more are quite loud. Such fans will always cause distractions in the bathroom when running.
Exhaust fans can have as many additional features as possible. Some of the most common other features found in exhaust fans include integrated lighting and humidity sensors.
Fans with integrated lighting can be used to provide beautiful illumination in your bathroom. The integrated lighting unit often comprises a large LED lamp with specific designs to enhance your bathroom’s look and ambiance.
Humidity sensors help bathroom fans to be highly efficient. The sensors monitor the air’s humidity levels in the bathroom and trigger the fan to start running the atmosphere is highly humid. Humidity sensing bath fans help to maintain the bathroom more conveniently and effectively.
Efficiency relates to the amount of energy that a fan utilizes. Fans with high-wattage LED lights are less energy-efficient than fans with low-wattage LED lights. Some bathroom fans come with integrated LED lights that are rated as high as 16 watts. Others have integrated bulbs that are rated as low as 11 watts.
Best Exhaust Fans With Light Directly Above Shower
1. Broan-NuTone 744 Recessed Light Combo
- HIGH-QUALITY FAN: High-efficiency centrifugal fan with a 1. 5 Sones rating at 70 CFM and a 4" round duct connector
- MODERN: Trim matched to designs of major recessed light manufacturers
- PRACTICAL: 6. 87" high housing fits in new construction and 2" x 8" ceiling joists to allow for easy installation where you need it most
- EFFICIENT: Uses a 75-Watt bulb, either R30 or BR30 for standard applications. Multiple units can easily be used in larger rooms
- EASY TO USE: Includes optional wall controls for easy, simplified use. Fan not for use over cooking surfaces
The Broan-NuTone 744 is one of the easy to install and operate exhaust fans that you can use to create a comfortable environment in your bathroom.
A large housing is 6.87 inches high, and ceiling joists are 2 inches by 8 inches. The large housing fits perfectly with the requirements of modern construction. More so, one can use the joists to complete the installation process quickly.
Operating your Broan-NuTone 744 is a breeze. For starters, you can decide to use wall controls to adjust every aspect of its functioning. Using the wall controls to change the mode of performance of this exhaust fan is a straightforward process.
This exhaust fan produces very little noise. When operating optimally, its noise level reaches a mere 1.5 sones. You will hardly hear its soft buzz in the bathroom.
However, with a CFM score of 70, this exhaust fan is limited for use in small to medium-sized bathrooms. You will have to get additional units for use in large bathrooms.
- Easy to use because it comes with optional wall controls
- The large housing and ceiling joists allow for quick installation
- Ultra-silent operation: 1.5 sones
- The exhaust fan is limited for use in small bathrooms
2. Air King DRLC702 Round Bath Fan with Light
- Decorative bath fan comes with a stylish grill (13-1/2" diameter) in nickel finish and ribbed frosted glass light lens, giving your bathroom a sophisticated and illuminating glow, along with an even distribution of light
- Operates at 70 CFM at 4.0 scones, and comes with a 4" round duct collar with damper for quiet operation and protection against back drafts
- Exhaust fan and light can be wired to function separately
- Easy installation with included adjustable hanging brackets or housing mounting tabs
- Uses two 60-watt maximum standard, type A19 medium base bulbs (not included)
- Bath fan with light designed to bring style to your home
- 70-CFM blower at 4-sone for quiet operation
- Exhaust capacity for rooms of approximately 70-square feet
- Easily installation by using the included adjustable hanging brackets
- Comes with a 1-year limited warranty
One of the most remarkable things about the Air King DRLC702 is its design. This exhaust fan is specially made to provide great ambiance and style in your bathroom.
It has a large, all-around, and stylish grill that has a nickel finish. The grill is perfectly decorated to provide aesthetic value in your home because its colors and style match modern and contemporary interior décor styles.
The large frosted and ribbed glass of the light of this fan is another great addition. It provides soft illumination in the bathroom, which creates a sophisticated ambiance that your modern home deserves.
Apart from the design and styling, this is a highly functional exhaust fan that you can rely on to keep your bathroom dry enough. It has a large collar that prevents back-drafting from taking place.
The only notable drawback of using this exhaust fan relates to its noise level. You are likely to find the low buzzing sound at four sones that produce a significant distraction when in the bathroom.
- The large, frosted, and ribbed glass lens provides sophisticated illumination in the bathroom
- The sizeable stylish grill with a shining nickel finish enhances the look of your bathroom
- Effective operation because the 4-inch round duct collar prevents backdrafts
- The exhaust fan is quite noisy
3. Homewerks Worldwide 7117-01-BN Bathroom Fan
- OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE: This Homewerk's bath fan ensures comfort in your home by quietly eliminating moisture and humidity in the bathroom. This exhaust fan is 1. 1 sones at 80 CFM which means it’s able to manage spaces up to 80 square feet.
- BATH FANS HELPS REMOVE HARSH ODOR: When cleaning the bathroom or toilet, harsh chemicals are used and they can leave an obnoxious odor behind. Homewerk’s bathroom fans can help remove this odor with its powerful ventilation
- BUILD QUALITY: Designed to be corrosion resistant with its galvanized steel construction featuring a modern style round shape and has an 4000K Cool White Light LED Light.
- EASY INSTALLATION: This exhaust bath fan is easy to install with its no-cut design and ceiling mount ventilation. Ceiling Opening (L) 7-1/2 in x Ceiling Opening (W) 7-1/4 x Ceiling Opening (H) 5-3/4 in. 13 in round grill and 4 in round duct connector.
- HOMEWERKS TRUSTED QUALITY: Be confident in the quality and construction of each and every one of our products. We ensure that all of our products are produced and certified to regional, national and international industry standards. We are proud of the products we sell, you will be too. 3 Year Limited
If you are looking for an easy-to-install and highly powerful exhaust fan for your large bathroom, the Homewerks Worldwide 7117-01-BN may be the right choice.
It can move up to 80 cubic meters of air per minute; this means that this fan can effectively clear damp and smelly air in your large bathroom. This outstanding performance will help maintain a dry atmosphere in your bathroom at home.
Installing the Homewerks Worldwide 7117-01-BN is a straightforward and effortless process. Its standard housing measures 7.5 by 7.25 inches, making it unnecessary for one to cut the ceiling for additional space.
Another great benefit of using this bathroom fan relates to its noise level. The Homewerks Worldwide 7117-01-BN has an amazingly low noise level of 1.1 sones. You will hardly hear it running in your bathroom.
Sadly, this fan is not as energy efficient as one would expect. Its large built-in 16-watt bulb and an AC motor that runs nonstop consume a considerable amount of electricity.
- Outstanding performance suitable for bathrooms that measure an average of 80 square feet
- Easy installation because you do not have to cut the ceiling for additional space
- Ultra-silent operation of 1.1 sones for your ultimate comfort
- The built-in 16-watt bulb and an AC motor that runs continuously consume a considerable amount of electric energy
4. Panasonic FV-08VRE2 Ventilation Fan with Recessed LED
- Architectural grade recessed fan/LED light
- Ideal for use in bathrooms, living rooms or laundry rooms
- Quiet and powerful 80 CFM ventilation hidden above the ceiling
- Includes (1) replaceable 11W, ENERGY STAR 2. 0 certified GU24 base LED lamp
- Beautiful lighting with 6-1/2-in aperture and advanced luminaire design
The Panasonic FV-08VRE2 is a unique fan because of its classic recessed light design. When properly installed, the LED lamp remains deeply buried inside your fan to offer a fantastic aesthetic value. Moreover, the black finish of the LED light edges blends perfectly with modern and contemporary interior décor styles.
This fan is as powerful as it is aesthetically appealing. It has an amazingly high CFM score of 80. This means that you can rely on it to keep the air in your large bathroom clean and dry. The fan effectively moves out damp and smelly air to keep your bathroom comfortable.
Installing this fan on your ceiling is a simple process. You do not have to cut your ceiling to create additional space. Besides, the fan comes with all the hardware that you need to ensure that it is correctly installed on your ceiling.
- The recessed LED lamp and the use of a luminaire design provides wonderful lighting
- Quick installation because you do not have to cut for additional space
- Excellent design that provides aesthetic value to your bathroom
- The fan is slightly noisy
5. Hunter 83002 Ventilation Sona Bathroom Exhaust Fan
- 110 CFM, 3.0 Sones
- This quiet bathroom exhaust fan is a sophisticated fixture with flowing scrollwork and a Imperial Bronze finish
- Reduces excess moisture and humidity and circulates air to fight odors
- ETL damp listed for use over shower or tub with GCFI circuit
- 5-Year limited warranty
- Sophisticated fixture with flowing scrollwork and a Imperial Bronze finish
- ETL damp listed for use over shower or tub with GCFI circuit
- Requires two 60 watt A-15 bulbs (not included) and one C7 watt for nightlight (not included)
- UL Listed for use over shower enclosure/tub with GFCI circuit
- 110 CFM, Sons: 3.0
If you are looking for an amazingly powerful fan with an elegant design to remove all excess moisture and odor from your bathroom, the Hunter 83002 may be a perfect choice.
This fan is the ideal embodiment of design and performance excellence. It features a large lamp with edges that have flowing scrollwork and an imperial bronze finish.
These design features give the fan an elegant look that you can take advantage of to improve your bathroom’s overall look.
Besides, this fan can effectively move 110 cubic feet of air per minute. This outstanding performance enables the fan to efficiently create a dry and comfortable environment inside large bathrooms that measure up to 110 square feet.
Operating this fan is an easy process. Once you have the buttons properly installed, you can change every aspect of its functioning at the buttons’ press.
However, you may need the help of a technician to help you install this fan. The installation process is extended due to the design of the fan. Also, you will have to bear with its high noise level of 3 sones.
- Outstanding performance of 110 CFM
- A sophisticated design that includes an imperial bronze finish and flowing scrollwork
- Easy to operate and control using buttons
- High noise level of 3 sones