Whole Lotta Fan aka Whole House Fan
Here’s another tip before you go solar: install a whole house fan. I bought my AirScape Whole House Fan (WHF) about two years ago along with a couple of watt busting buddies of mine. This summer we installed four more fans for our friends; they couldn’t stand to hear us bragging about how much we liked our fans and how little we had to use our AC’S in these hot Bakersfield summers. I do have a small home (1230 sqft) that was built in the 1980’s, no pool. My wife is a teacher and is home during the summer and my largest PG&E bill last summer was $147.38 including gas. (Click Read More to Continue)
The concept of the WHF is basic. Fresh air is drawn from outside through open windows (usually at night) and is blown directly into the attic causing the hot air in your attic to vent outside. This brings down the heat load of the entire house and allows the house to stay cooler during the day. This means you don’t have to run your AC as much to cool your house down to a comfortable level. I’ve also used it to warm my house on those days when it is warmer outside than in. I usually turn mine on at 2 or 3 in the morning. I’ll get up, go to the bathroom (you probably didn’t need to know that) and check my remote thermometer outside. More nights than not the temp outside is as cool or cooler than the inside of my house (I set my thermostat at 78), so I crack a couple of windows in my bedroom and turn it on. Almost immediately I can feel the fan drawing cool air into the house. I don’t know about you, but I sleep better breathing fresh air rather than recycled.
AirScape http://www.airscapefans.com has three models of fans depending on the square footage of your home. I have the smallest model. On high it draws 70 watts at 1000 cfm, a lot less than an air conditioner (they average about 3kw an hour). It was a very simple installation. It fits into both 16” and 24″ stud bays. The most technical part of the installation would be installing an outlet for the fan; it has a 6′ cord. I’m an electrician, so that was not an obstacle for me. The unit is remote controlled, has a 3 yr warranty, and qualifies for a PG&E rebate. This is just one step in lightening the load on your pocket book and mother earth’s shoulders.
Greener Bakersfield Contributor