"Understanding Your Home" by Building Inspector Mark Visser
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Bathroom exhaust fan. Spot ventilation. Bathroom exhaust fan with light. Bathroom exhaust fan with heater
Exhaust fan heaters and heat lamps should be installed at least 450 mm (18 inches) away from the door swing to prevent hanging clothes or towels slung over the door from igniting and starting a fire. These minimum distances should be checked against local codes.

Water stains around the bathroom exhaust fan are an indication of venting problems. Ignoring the problem will lead to costly repairs. Check the exhaust duct for blockage (bird nests) or insulate the duct in the attic area

Open window for spot ventilation

Bathroom Exhaust Fans
with or without a light or heater

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Bathroom exhaust fan. Spot ventilation. Bathroom exhaust fan with light. Bathroom exhaust fan with heater
Adequate ventilation is especially important for newer, airtight homes, for older well sealed homes with a high efficiency furnace, and for electric heated homes.
All these homes have one thing in common, a low rate of air exchange. This means that less warm, moist air is escaping and being replaced with cold air.
Cold air can hold less moisture than warm air and will keep moisture levels low. So, with fewer air exchanges, more moist, warm air will stay in the house, creating more moisture problems.

Bathroom exhaust fans are required for all bathrooms that have no windows that can be used for venting. Fans should be vented to the exterior.
Vent pipes passing through the attic should be insulated, as illustrated, because the condensation from the warm house air can freeze which may partially or completely block the vent. This frost will eventually thaw and cause water damage to the exhaust fan and surrounding ceiling. There are also exhaust fans that come with a light and/or heater.

Spot ventilation can be used selectively to ventilate moisture producing areas such as bathrooms, laundry rooms and kitchens. Open windows can also be used for spot ventilation.

Roughed-in insulated bathroom vents

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