10 Best Bathroom Extractor Fan Reviews 2020 [Silent and Adjustable]

Bathroom-Extractor-Fan

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To avoid mold growing behind the tub or slippery algae film on the tiled floors in your bathroom, you have to do only one thing. Purchase and fix up a bathroom extractor fan. This will solve the issue of dampness or moisture.

Alongside, it will ensure a crisp, dry, and comfier bathroom. However, finding the right extractor fan out of hundreds with various designs and quality is not an easy job.

Understanding this, we came up with some of the best bathroom extractor fan reviews, covering every aspect, i.e. the FAQ and reasons behind using an extractor fan. Hopefully our effort is going to be helpful for you to pick the best extractor fan. Let’s start!!

The first exhaust fan to kick-start our list of the best bathroom extractor fans is the Breeze GBR80H GreenBuilder 80 CFM Exhaust Fan from delta Production Corporation.

The GBR80H GreenBuilder Exhaust Fan is undoubtedly one of the smarter fans out there, thanks to its ability to adapt and adjust. First of all, the GBR80H fan measures 10.8 x 10.8 x 6 inches in dimension and offers you air ventilation power of 80 CFM.

This makes it easy to install and ideal for bathrooms that are 80 square feet or under. As for the noise level, it is fairly quiet at just 0.8 sones. This well-built exhaust fan is also HVI certified and quality tested, as well as energy certified. It uses almost 90% less energy!

That’s going to save quite a few pennies, and we are all up for that. However, the thing we liked most about the GBR80H GreenBuilder Exhaust Fan is how smart it is built. To begin with, it has an indicator light built underneath the grills that let you know the fan is running and well.

 But the best part is the adjustability humidity setting which can be set from 50% to 80% RH.

But whenever the humidity is above the set level, the fan will run at full power, and whenever the humidity is lower, it runs on a lower preset CFM. See how intuitive that is? It’s got a mind of its own!

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Good CFM limit
  • Adjustable humidity set points
  • Self-adaptive CFM changes
  • Quality construction
  • Easy to install; both wall and ceiling mountable
  • HVI certified
  • Power saver

Cons :

  • Weak air ventilation for an 80 CFM fan
  • Not as quiet as anticipated
  • New construction,

If you are looking for a decent exhaustion fan without spending a fortune, then the Ultra-Quiet Bathroom Ventilation and Exhaust Fan is proof that quality does not have to be expensive!

The Ultra-Quiet Exhaust Fan from BV is one of the best and most affordable bathroom exhaustion fans of its class. It has a mounting opening of 9.25 inches by 9.0 inches with a height of about 7.5 inches and a 4-inch collar, making it very easy and convenient to install and adjust to your bathroom.

Speaking of which, this exhaust fan offers you a CFM (cubic feet minute) of 90. This means that the air movement performed by this fan would make it ideal for a bathroom that measures about 90 square feet. That’s quite the capacity for an exhaust fan so affordable we reckon.

As for durability, the BV Ultra-Quiet Exhaust Fan is up there too. Made from quality aluminum housing and parts, this thing should last you a while, but the thing that we always look into, and so should you, is the noise output. And let’s just say, the Ultra-Quiet Exhaust Fan is not called that for no reason. The fan operates on Silent Clever technology and produces a mere 0.8 sones worth of noise output.

So far, the Ultra-Quiet Exhaust Fan from BV looks and sounds like a quality buy, but to certify this, it even comes with HVI-2100, ETL, and CSA approval! This means the fan comes tested to standards before reaching you. On top of that, the cherry on top is that you get a yearlong limited product warranty with technical support upon purchase. Sounds like a pretty good deal to us guys.

Pros :

  • Good CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Easy to install
  • HVI certified
  • Power saver; 120V
  • Comes with warranty and tech support

Cons :

  • Gets loud
  • Does not perform like a 90 CFM fan; made for smaller bathrooms

The Panasonic FV-08VQ5 WhisperCeiling is definitely one of the products that have made a name for themselves among consumers. Let’s find out why!

The FV-08VQ5 WhisperCeiling has a detachable 4-inch diameter duct adapter and measures 15.75 x 14.87 x 10.25 inches. You can attach the grill directly to the housing with torsion springs.

The housing for it is built in backdraft damper and has an expandable extension bracket up to 24 inches. You also have a double hanger bar system which allows you to position it to your liking. Overall, it is absolutely no trouble to install whatsoever, so cheers to that.

As for the power factor, it has a power rating of 120 volts and 60 Hz and also features a thermal-cutoff fuse which is absolutely fantastic. One point for safety! With a CFM of 80, this ceiling mountable fan is perfect for 80 square feet bathrooms. As for the noise level, the Panasonic FV-08VQ5 WhisperCeiling has a noise output of just 0.3 sones.

Anyway, the Panasonic FV-08VQ5 WhisperCeiling is also HVI certified and comes to you after meeting both UL and CUL standards. You also get 3 years limited warranty on parts.

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Good CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Very easy to install; ceiling mountable
  • HVI certified
  • Comes with warranty

Cons :

  • Not as powerful as generic 80 CFM fans should be
  • Produces a light humming noise

The 4th contender to make it to our list of the best bathroom exhaust fans is the very popular and very renowned QTXE080 Ultra Silent Bath Fan from Broan!

If you are looking for an exhaust fan that will work without exhaustion, then the Broan QTXE080 Ultra Silent Bath Fan is a great start. This bathroom fan has been made specifically for continuous use. It uses high-quality motor along with durable parts and wiring that makes it strong enough to work all day!

The housing measures 10 and a half inches in length, 11 and 3/8 in width, and 7 5/8 inches in height. It also has a 6-inch ducting size. You will also find hanger bars for fast and universal installation in all types of construction.

It is easy to install and set up, no doubt about that. As for the CFM, the Broan QTXE080 Ultra Silent Bath Fan gives you a good 80, making it ideal for a bathroom as big as 80 square feet. And with a sound and noise output of just 0.3 sones, you can expect your time in the bathroom to be as quiet and peaceful as you want it.

Last but not least, the Broan QTXE080 Ultra Silent Bath Fan is HVI certified so you know you are getting something more substantial and reliable.

It is also energy star qualified which ensures a much lower power consumption. If you don’t want to be engaged in a mess of having to change and install an exhaust fan for a few years, at least, then QTXE080 Ultra Silent Bath Fan from Broan is the way to go!

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Good CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Very easy to install
  • HVI certified
  • Saves power
  • Comes with warranty

Cons :

  • Not powerful enough to be 80 CFM.
  • Slightly noisier than expected

Next up, we have an exhaust fan that leaps above our standard and usual exhaust fans; the Fantech 2SHE0721 Axial Wall Shutter Fan.

The Fantech 2SHE0721 Axial Wall Shutter Fan, as you can guess from the name already, does not have the same construction and design like some of the previous exhaust fans. This ceiling mountable exhaust fan has shutters and we are very into that!

The shutters are made from OSHA compliant guards, which are furthermore coated with gray polyester to resist corrosion. It has a 7″ diameter deep-pitched propeller with an enclosed motor for optimum protection against humidity and moisture. As for CFM, the Fantech 2SHE0721 Axial Wall Shutter Fan gives you a whopping 585! That’s enough to ventilate and dehumidify a room as large as 585 square feet! Wowie. Imagine how great it would do in a medium to large size bathroom then? It also happens to be one of the most lightweight exhaust fans on our list! On top of that, the speed of the fan (1725 rpm) is also adjustable to another setting, which is obviously very much needed when you want to control the air outflow more precisely.

Then comes the quality assurance. The Fantech 2SHE0721 Axial Wall Shutter Fan is AMCA Sound and Air Certified, cULus. Quiet, simple, yet so powerful! Definitely worth another look.

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • High CFM limit
  • Durable construction
  • Has shutters
  • Very easy to install
  • Certified
  • Lightweight

Cons :

  • Shutters don’t move up and down too easily
  • Trembling and shaky motor
  • Propellers hit the housing; a design flaw

If you liked the WhisperCeiling from Panasonic, then we are sure that you are going to love the FV-05-11VKS1 Whisper Green Select Fan from the company. It has become one of the most popular and go-to bathroom exhausts fan in the market. Let’s see why!

The FV-05-11VKS1 Whisper Green Select Fan has a duct diameter of both 4 and 6 inches. It has a 10-and-a-half-inch mount opening with 10.25 x 10.25 x 7.38 inches in dimensions.

A flex-z-fast bracket provides flexible, quick, and convenient installation without the drama. Fits and installs very easily so you should have no trouble whatsoever.

Now, for the power components. The Green Select Fan has an all in one customizable DC fan with a noise output of just 0.3 sones. Super hush! On top of that, this exhaust fan has not 1 but 3 speed settings from 50 to 80 to 110 CFM. Oh, and you get a CFM of 110 (maximum) which is obviously more than enough for any standard medium to large size bathroom.

But more performance means more power, right? Nope! The Panasonic FV-05-11VKS1 Whisper Green Select Fan qualifies to ASHRAE 62.2, LEED Cal-Green and Energy Star standards so you can enjoy more value for less money!

For us, personally, above all these feature is the selectable add-on feature which allows the user to plug in a maximum of two plug-ins. Motion sensor, LED night light and condensation sensors, the choice is yours! How cool is that?

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Greay CFM limit
  • Durable construction
  • Customizable motor
  • Offers multiple speeds
  • Very easy to install
  • Certified
  • Allows 2 plug-ins of your choice
  • Has timer
  • Saver power

Cons :

  • Plug-ins will run all day to the slightest motion detection
  • Delay for a while before starting to spin

And up next, we have for you yet another favorite of ours: the 9800512 Metal Shutter Exhaust Fan from Professional Grade Products.

To begin with, one of the main reasons we favor the 9800512 Metal Shutter Exhaust Fan is because… yes, you guessed it, the shutters. Much like the Fantech 2SHE0721 Axial Wall Shutter Fan, this exhaust fan also comes with shutters.

This means you can open and shut the fan as you please. The entire unit is painted for protection against corrosion and rusting which is a given under damp and humid conditions. Apart from that, you will notice that the fan is fairly small.

It has a 10-inch diameter and weighs just a few pounds. Having said that, we wouldn’t judge a book by its size. It has a powerful motor located outside the airstream and can offer as high as 403 CFM! Yep. This makes it ideal for large rooms and spaces. And if it can work there, it can sure as heck keep your bathroom dry like a pro! It is very minimal and simple with an old-school vibe.

One neat detail about this fan is that its shutters will open and shut automatically depending on whether the unit is running or not. Comes with a power cord, fairly quiet for a unit so powerful and super smart!

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • High CFM limit
  • Has shutters which operate automatically
  • Easy to install
  • Certified
  • Lightweight

Cons :

  • Very short lifespan
  • Flimsy and cheap construction
  • Tends to turn on and off on its own
  • Blade tend to hit shutters

If you are looking for an exhaust fan that can offer a notch more power and performance than the Panasonic FV-08VQ5 WhisperCeiling, then the FV-11VQ5 WhisperCeiling Ceiling Mounted Fan is your guy!

The FV-11VQ5 WhisperCeiling Ceiling has a 4-inch duct diameter and measures 14.17 x 16.73 x 10.83 inches in dimensions and has a mounting opening of 10 inches.

With double hanger bar system on the unit, you can position the fan to your liking. All in all, installing the FV-11VQ5 WhisperCeiling Ceiling Mounted Fan is not going to be a problem.

As for the power factor, this exhaust fan can offer you a CFM of 110! Ideal for a bathroom as large as 110 square feet. It furthermore has a condenser motor with a power rating of 120 volts and 60 Hz, which is fairly powerful. And yet, despite having such a powerful motor, it has a noise output of 0.3 sones.

On top of that, the exhaust fan is also energy star qualified and therefore uses a minimal amount of power. The FV-11VQ5 WhisperCeiling, overall, seems to be a decently powerful and quiet unit for use in any medium to large size bathroom, and it has quality certifications too!

Speaking of certifications, the Panasonic FV-11VQ5 WhisperCeiling Ceiling Mounted Fan is HVI certified, meaning it comes to you only after rigorous testing and quality check. I think we can all appreciate that, right? On top of that, you also have a limited 3-year warranty on parts and components.

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Great CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Very easy to install; ceiling mountable
  • HVI certified
  • Comes with warranty

Cons :

  • Not as quiet as claimed
  • Short lifespan
  • Not as powerful as expected from a 110 CFM

If all other fans are not making the cut for you, and you want something a little more powerful, then take a look at the FV-30VQ3 WhisperCeiling 290 CFM Ceiling Mounted Fan from Panasonic. The Panasonic FV-30VQ3 WhisperCeiling 290 CFM Ceiling Mounted Fan measures 15 x 15 x 10.2 inches in dimensions and has a mounting opening of 12 and 3/16 inches and a 6 inches duct diameter. As for the unit itself, the housing of the fan is made from heavy-gauge zinc galvanized steel which is resistant to corrosion and rusting from all the moisture and dampness.

Exactly what you’d want in a bathroom. Next, you have the air ventilation capacity which goes on to offer you a good 290 CFM! This means it can cover an area as large as 290 square feet, so it should be more than enough more for any bathroom.

Now, here’s the thing about the Panasonic FV-30VQ3 WhisperCeiling Ceiling Mounted Fan and its noise level, despite claiming to produce 2.0 sones (which is rather high when we initially saw the description), the unit is fairly quiet! You do get a slight humming, but it is nowhere near audible unless you try really hard to hear something. Weird, but great, nonetheless.

And a majority of the credit goes to its enclosed condenser motor and double-tapered, dolphin shaped bladed blower wheel which moves the air nice and slow to prevent noise.

The Panasonic FV-30VQ3 WhisperCeiling Ceiling Mounted Fan is also energy star qualified, meaning it uses less power and saves a few bucks. And finally, you have the standard 3-year warranty on parts and components from Panasonic. Not a bad deal at all.

Pros :

  • High CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Saves power
  • Comes with warranty

Cons :

  • Produces this metal rattling sound
  • Difficult to install; poor instruction and no hardware included

If you are willing to spend a few extra bucks to experience something a little more refined and premium, then the final name on our list, the Panasonic FV-11VHL2 WhisperWarm 110 CFM Ceiling Mounted Fan, should be a major consideration for you.

The FV-11VHL2 WhisperWarm Ceiling Mounted Fan is special. Before we cover why, let’s cover the basics. This unit measures 18.1 x 13.3 inches and has a mounting opening of 17 3/8 inches by 12 5/8 inches, and a duct diameter of 4 inches.

Should be pretty easy to install. As for the ventilation capacity, it gives you 110 CFM, which means it’s good for bathrooms as large as 110 square feet. And with a 0.7 sone noise level, we don’t think you will be hearing any of that grrr and brrr any time soon.

Now, let’s get to the best part. The Panasonic FV-11VHL2 WhisperWarm also offers you the feature to serve as a warmer and nightlight. It has a stainless-steel heating element which features chrome wire with magnesium oxide for even and efficient heat transfer.

It is recommended that you install it no more than 8 feet from the floor to experience the best warmth. But that’s not all, this exhaust fan also features two 13 watts self-ballasted GU24 base CFL lamps and a 4-watt night light. Very nice indeed.

The FV-11VHL2 WhisperWarm Ceiling Mounted Fan is also an energy conscious fan thanks to the energy start qualification. And then finally, to seal the deal, you get the standard Panasonic 3-year warranty on parts and components. Impressive.

Pros :

  • Quiet operation
  • Features light and warmer
  • High CFM limit
  • Quality construction
  • Saves power
  • Comes with warranty

Cons :

  • Underperforms for a 110 CFM
  • Heater tends to overheat and malfunction
  • Bulbs are difficult to source

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Reasons why you need a bathroom extractor fan…. ...Right Now!

Gets rid of moisture.

Let’s start with stating the obvious. The first and most important reason behind getting a bathroom exhaust fan in the first place is to eliminate air and moisture.

The bathroom, out of all the other rooms in the house, is obviously going to have a much higher moisture level in the air. This is due to all the water, steam, and heat being trapped inside it.

The extractor fan will suck out this wet, heavy, and damp air to make room for fresh air. Mind you, wet and overly humid air is breeding ground for bacteria and unwanted growths like mold and what not. So, getting rid of that extra moisture is very important if you don’t want to bring down disease or death to anyone who uses that bathroom.

Keeps air dry and crisp.

No, we are not rephrasing the first reason. Well, yes, we are, but for a different reason.

Ever noticed how when you move from a normal room into a badly ventilated bathroom you feel weirdly heavy and uncomfortable? This happens due to the excess moisture in the air. A well-ventilated bathroom will have air just as good as your bedroom, light, dry, and zero stickiness.

Safety.

Fever and diarrhea from molds and mildew isn’t the only health risk of a wet, badly ventilated bathroom.

A steamy and humid bathroom is bound to be and stay wet most of the time.

This not only means death to your in-bathroom furnishings (especially wood), but it also poses a threat to you. Wet tiles and wet walls can end up being extremely dangerous.

One slip of the foot and BAAAM! An extractor fan does a lot more than preventing fogged up mirrors, it tries and keeps everything dry so that there’s zero risk of slipping and sliding in the bathroom. Get it installed before landing into a major accident. Prevention is ALWAYS better than cure.

Odor control.

Just because it’s a poop station doesn’t mean it has to smell like one. In order to get rid of all the funky odor in a bathroom, it is very important that you keep it very, very well ventilated.

Without an extractor fan, the bathroom air remains trapped inside, or worse yet, diffuses into the air out the bathroom and into your bedroom or hall. Do you want everyone around to barf and gag to their graves? Didn’t think so!

Buying Guide: Bathroom Extractor Fans Advice

Selecting the right power.

Before you step into the store and check out just about any bathroom exhaust fan you find, you need to know that it doesn’t work like that, there is a little math involved.

You see, you can’t expect one unit to be able to ventilate both a50 square feet bathroom and a 500 square feet basement, right? It’s common sense.

The rule of thumb here is the larger the space, the more powerful your exhaust fan needs to be. Fair enough. The power, or air movement capacity, of an exhaust fan is measured in CFM or cubic feet per minute. Here’s what you want to get:

Formula = 1 CFM X 1 square feet of space.

Therefore, for instance, if you had to get a fan for a 100 square feet bathroom, the absolute bare minimum you need to buy is 100 CFM. Simple!

Noise level.

Wherever there is gushing air involved, there is noise. We totally get it. But believe us when we say this, some exhaust fans can get terribly loud. Nobody needs to hear a T-rex roaring while they pee, totally unnecessary.

For your bathroom especially, which tend to be smaller than other rooms and spaces, you obviously want something decently quiet. Now, the noise level of these units are measured in sones, and it could range anywhere from 4 down to 0.3 or lower. The higher the number, the louder it gets. For a bathroom, you want to stick to a fan that is rated sones lower the 1.

Ease of installation.

Installing an exhaust fan in your bathroom is pretty easy as long you have the right resources; hardware and instruction. Unfortunately, many units don’t come with sufficient info or accessories. So, look out for all the necessary stuff you will need to install a unit. We personally recommend getting screws instead of nails. They hold better and do not rattle.

Although this part isn’t mandatory, we personally favor getting a unit with shutters. This allows you to open and shut the pathway of the fan as you need. Keeps dust, bugs, water, etc. away.

Construction.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out a bad design from a good one. And you won’t need much guidance in this department either.

Start off by checking that all the parts and components, big or small, look and feel proper. Some motors are notorious for vibrating and rattling wildly during operation, so lookout for that. Also, make sure that the blades of the fan do not do the housing. This is obviously going to create friction, noise and a mess.

HVI certified.

Here’s one thing we really, really want you to pay attention to… certifications. Luckily, most exhaust bathroom fans come to the market after meeting standards and quality tests.

One of the more popular being the energy start qualification which lets you know that the unit you got is going to be a lot more power conscious than a unit without an energy star qualification. And similarly, there are many more like these.

However, one thing we want you to look for, specifically, is the HVI certificate. This certificate ensures the unit is independently tested and certified to meet certain industry standards; it is reliable and going to perform as promised and claimed as long as the user uses it properly.

Warranty.

And finally, you have the after-sale security factor. Any bathroom extractor fan, more or less, is supposed to last at least a decade or more. So, if you are paying a premium price for a unit, you want to make sure it lasts long and at least as long as the manufacturer promised.

Many reputable companies will go on to offer warranties on parts and components for up to 3 to 5 years. You can look forward to refunding, repair, or replacement policies.

Getting a product with a warranty isn’t fundamental because there are a handful of units that surpass the quality of warranted products. But like we mentioned before, it always nice to have a little backup, especially if it was an expensive fan.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Bathroom Extractor Fans:

Would it be an overkill to install a 290 CFM extractor fan in a 90 square feet bathroom?

Answer: We are so glad someone asked. The rule of thumb when deciding CFM is that it must always equal the space in square feet.

But there is of course absolutely no problem in getting higher CFM against the square feet. Having said that, choosing a very high CFM for a decent size bathroom is obviously not necessary. You will, after all, be charged as per the CFM. So yeah, a little overboard is fine, just don’t go crazy buying a Herculean exhaust fan for a shoebox bathroom.

Will I be able to install a wall mount or ceiling mount horizontally?

Answer: A wall mount is made and designed to be installed on the wall while a ceiling mount is, of course, specifically designed to be installed on the ceiling. We obviously recommend that you stick to the manufacturer’s recommendation.

On the other hand, we have heard of hundreds of users who were successful in installing their ceiling/wall mountable units horizontally. You may still want to speak with the seller beforehand, just to be on the safe side.

How should I go about cleaning the exhaust fan? And how frequently?

Answer: Great question! We want to start off by saying that you should really avoid getting too hands-on with the unit. Don’t get the brush, or the detergents, or the oil. Take it easy. Just vacuum clean the grilles every 4 to 6 months to get rid of the gunk that’s accumulated.

However, if you think the unit could use a thorough deep clean, then turn off the power and get busy with a damp cloth and some soapy water. But we recommend that you leave the deep cleaning part to professionals.

Would you recommend venting the extractor fan out into the basement or attic?

Answer: Absolutely not! We know many people do it, and we know that they get away with it. But we, personally, are strongly against this, it’s common chemistry guys.

The humid and wet air that the fan suck out of the bathroom will regenerate the same effect if you vent it out into yet another closed and non-ventilated room, like the attic, basement, storeroom, etc. It’s only a matter of time before the moisture starts disintegrating your attic or basement too! We highly suggest that you vent it out into the external air. Take the chimney for instance, would you want to vent out the smoke into another room?

My extractor fan is doing its job fine, but the air still ends up feeling a little heavy. What is wrong?

Answer: One thing many people don’t know is that that they should install a bathroom door that’s at least ¾ of in an inch from the floor. This allows new, fresher air to make up for the air that the extractor fan is venting out.

Final Words

There are some things in the house that you can’t, and shouldn’t, skimp with, your bathroom extractor fan is definitely one of them. Get it right and you can expect years to pass very smoothly.

Get it wrong, and well, you know what happens! And our article here is to make sure that you steer clear of such messy outcomes. We have covered everything from A to Z about bathroom extractors, so you know what to get.

Each and every section in our article, from the buying guide to the reviews, we put together to provide you maximum information and take you one step closer to buying like a pro! We have everything from basic to fancy, from minimal to multi-featured. So, look around, take notes, and get the best bathroom extractor fan you can find!

With this, it’s a wrap. We hope you found our little class very helpful and informative. Be a good friend and share the article with your friends who need some bathroom makeover too! Thanks for staying with us and we will catch you next time. Cheers!

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