Dec 18, 2012 3:30 PM  PST

GreenPointers: Kitchen and Bathroom Ventilation Fans

December 2012

Act Now Before
Green Home Label Rebates End

Increased property value, health and environmental benefits are all reasons that Energy Upgrade in Los Angeles County's Green Label Program continues to appeal to homeowners.

Los Angeles County projects that all grant funds allocated for homeowner rebates will be fully committed soon, and has set a program end date of February 1, 2013 at 11:59 p.m.

If you've been thinking about working with a contractor to make green upgrades and get a Green Label for your home, you must act soon to qualify for the $2,000 rebate.

See how you can upgrade your home and take advantage of these attractive rebates before the program ends.

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Do you have a green building question? The "Ask an Expert" forum on is an excellent place to get those questions answered.

Our resident green building expert will give you a detailed answer, and other homeowners will have the opportunity to weigh in with their opinions and experiences.

Ask your question now!

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Full of pointers on how to make your remodel green, healthier, and more comfortable, this guide will help get you started.

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Kitchen and Bathroom Ventilation Fans

Our series of GreenPointers provides helpful tips for a healthier, greener home in a variety of topics. Today's topic is Kitchen and Bathroom Fans.

Kitchens and bathrooms produce odors and a lot of moisture that can cause problems if the rooms are not properly ventilated. Excessive moisture resulting from poor ventilation is one of the main causes of mold in homes, and can lead to rot and other damage to the building's structure. Also, gas ovens and gas cooktops produce carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, water vapor and other pollutants that should be vented out of the kitchen.

Green Pointers

Venting kitchen range hoods and bathroom fans to the outdoors reduces the amount of moisture inside the home and helps keep the indoor air healthier. Energy Star–qualified exhaust fans have durable, high performance motors and on average, they use 65% less energy than non-Energy Star models.

Energy Star exhaust fans are also less noisy. Energy Star–qualified bathroom fans and range hood fans are required to be quieter (less than 2.0 sones) so that people will be more likely to use them.

Here are some pointers for purchasing exhaust fans:
Step 1


  Don't buy overpowered range exhaust hoods; they can cause backdrafting of fireplaces and other combustion appliances. Backdrafting can occur when an exhaust fan, clothes dryer or leaky ducts negatively pressurize a house; this negative pressure can pull carbon monoxide into the house from the flue of a fireplace, furnace or water heater. See our know-how feature on Carbon Monoxide and Combustion Safety for information about preventing backdrafting.
Step 2


  Choose bathroom fans that are controlled by a timer or humidistat to ensure that the fan stays on long enough to adequately ventilate the room. Timers are triggered when the fans are turned on, and then run for a set time; 15 to 30 minutes usually works well. Humidistat controllers are even better, as they automatically switch on when moisture in the air reaches a threshold level, and shut down when the moisture level subsides
Step 3


  The Home Ventilating Institute has detailed information on what to look for when purchasing a bathroom or range hood exhaust fan, including recommended ventilation rates based on bathroom size, kitchen size, oven/range output and location of hood:

Read more tips on Kitchen and Bathroom Ventilation Fans

Learn more about the Green Label Rebate Program and find out how you can qualify for a $2,000 rebate to get a green label for your home today!

For additional information on this article, please contact:
(510) 590-3360
Source: Build It Green  

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