How to Use an Attic Fan

Attic fans, while not the most commons home appliance in more recently built homes, still do exist in many houses. They allow a homeowner to provide superior ventilation and cooling to their home at a minimum of expense and with far less energy expense than is necessary to provide central air conditioning. The surprising thing, however, is that many people who own one simply don't know how to use an attic fan properly, nor how to use one to its optimal benefit. Do you have an attic fan in your house that never gets used at all?

Attic fan diagram.
  1. Read the directions for your attic fan. Although this may seem a bit redundant, some attic fans do have specific instructions that bear remembering. So, do yourself a favor and read through the instructions before you operate your attic fan.

  2. Open windows around your home. The attic fan works by pulling air up and pushing it out of the house. Therefore, you'll need to open windows throughout your home, or your attic fan won't be able to function properly.

  3. Turn the attic fan onto its highest setting at first. This will allow the fan to power up and to open the slats that cover the attic fan from sight when it isn't in use.

  4. Adjust the power of the attic fan to your desired power level after it has run on its highest setting for three to five minutes.

  5. Use your attic fan to ventilate and cool your house without using the more expensive option of air conditioning.


  • Those with health problems, especially breathing problems or allergies, may want to avoid attic fans and stick with air conditioning because attic fans can pull dust, air pollutants, mold and pollen into the house. All of these things are generally filtered through an air conditioning system.

About the Author

A legal clerk and law school student at The Thomas M. Cooley School of Law who lives in southeastern Michigan and holds a bachelor's degree in English from Western Michigan University. Geoffrey has over a decade of experience working as a freelance writer and has completed hundreds of articles during that time.