What should I look for in an energy efficient, quiet bathroom fan/light combination for a small bathroom?

Asked by Mary
Maple Valley, WA

Changing out a 25 year old fan/light combination. 4-inch duct. No heat. Also looking for brand/supplier options. 


Danny Kelly

Answered by Danny Kelly

Charlotte, NC

Kelly McArdle Construction

May 2, 2012

Look for an Energy Star fan and one that has a SONE rating of less than 1.

Be sure to:

  • size the fan properly;
  • install the proper size vent; and
  • run the vent all the way to the exterior.

I prefer the Panasonic fans as they are designed to measure the static pressure and will increase the fan power to be sure they exhaust the designed CFM. They also have many options for automatic turn on/off with motion sensors, humidity sensors, low speed continuous run, etc.

Nutone makes good fans as well.

We purchase ours through EFI


For more information:

Read "We are debating the merit of a solar tube fan vent for an interior bath vs. a high-efficiency fan only." a Q&A answered by Elizabeth DiSalvo.

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