Going online to find the biggest bathroom exhaust fan wasn’t as easy as I expected, but I’ve finally found nine that fit the bill. During my search, I was hoping to find a small list of a few good products to choose from. Instead, I got lost in what seemed like an endless maze of confusing websites with missing product information. It was a nightmare. I wasn’t a fan of it. (See what I did there? 🙂 )
There are many good reasons to choose a bigger bathroom fan. It’s your main defense against moisture, mold, mildew, and microorganisms that pollute air quality and can cause a lot more damage over time.
I’ve seen first-hand the damage that moisture and humidity created by a bath or shower can do over time. When a bathroom isn’t ventilated properly or doesn’t have an exhaust fan large enough to do the job, things get ugly in a hurry. I’m talking about things like peeling paint off walls and cabinets, warping doors, rusting fixtures, destroying wall board, and completely rotting out framing above the bathroom. Those definitely aren’t repairs you want to get involved with, especially when they are easily prevented.
A bathroom exhaust fan’s capacity to move air is measured in cubic feet per minute (CFM). So when I talk about big bathroom exhaust fans, I’m referring to those with higher CFM values. The Home Ventilating Institute recommends 1 CFM per square foot of floor space. In other words, if your bathroom measures 8’ x 10’, you want a fan with at least 80 CFM.
Call me a rebel, but I usually like to go a size or two larger than the recommended CFM for whatever bathroom I’m working on. So in an 8’ x 10’ bathroom, I usually opt for a fan in the 100 to 110 CFM range, instead of the recommended 80 CFM. Maybe that’s overkill, but with all the problems moisture and humidity can cause, I’d rather be safe than sorry, ya know?
Since it took so much time doing my own research, I thought I’d make it easier for anyone who might be reading this post. Below is a short list of the largest bathroom exhaust fans I could find. There are options for both ceiling-mounted exhaust fans and in-line exhaust fans. In-line exhaust fans can be mounted in an attic or other space above the bathroom (instead of directly in the ceiling) for quieter operation.
Here’s a quick video that shows how an inline bathroom fan works if you aren’t familiar with the term.
I capped my research at around 400 CFM, although I did include a couple larger options. Why? Because that’s getting pretty heavy-duty for a bathroom. You can find fans with CFM values well above 400, but those are typically used for other purposes (like moving air from room to room or throughout your entire house). And things start getting pretty noisy as the CFM’s rise.
I tried to select fans that were the quietest for their size. However, I was not able to locate sone values for all models. When that was the case, I tried to rely on customer reviews noting whether the fan was quiet or not.
Noise level is a consideration that’s important to a lot of people, myself included. Maybe I’ll do another post sometime on the quietest bathroom exhaust fans for people who are more concerned with sones than CFM.
So here are the biggest bathroom fans I felt were worthy of inclusion. Just click on any image if you want to find out more about each product.
Fantech PB270H2 Ventilation Fan (270 CFM)
Panasonic FV-30VQ3 Whisper Ceiling Ceiling Mounted Fan (290 CFM & 2.0 sones)
Broan MP280 Multi-Port In-Line Ventilator (290 CFM & 3 Sones)
Broan Manufacturing L300 Broan Lo Sone Exhaust Fan (300 CFM & 2.9 Sones)
Broan QT300 High Capacity Fan (300 CFM & 4.5 Sones)
Panasonic FV-30NLF1 Whisper Line Fan (340 CFM & 1.7 Sones)
Broan L400 High Capacity Commercial Grade Ventilation Fan (434 CFM & 2.3 Sones)
Fantech FG-8 Inline Centrifugal Duct Fan (461 CFM)
Broan L700 Ventilator Fan (701 CFM & 4.7 Sones Mounted Horizontal; 687 CFM & 5 Sones Mounted Vertical)
It wasn’t easy to find the biggest bathroom exhaust fans available. It took a lot of diligent digging to find all the size, CFM, and sones information I needed, and then even more time to sort through it all to find the best ones. I hope this post helps others out there in the same spot.
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