Best Bathroom Fan: A Complete Guide for Beginners

Latest Update on : 24 April 2021

When planning for a house, most of your time is generally spent on thinking about perfecting your bathroom. You don’t wanna spare any details. You want just the right sink for your bathroom, the bathtub which will go nicely with your décor, have already even picked a theme. Done all your researches by thorough browsing on the Kohler or American Standard websites, didn’t forget the Pinterest either. With all these details and stuff, you may or may not be very overwhelmed and completely ignore another very important of your bathroom shopping list. And it is your bathroom fan! Do you know that you need a fan in your bathroom? Well, technically it’s not your regular ceiling fan, it’s an exhaust fan with purposes like sucking the humid aid out of the bathroom, removing bad odor and keeping your bathroom nice and fresh. As you can see, even though we may look down upon this matter thinking it’s not significant to bother, an exhaust fan for your bathroom is a pretty important thing. Clearly, we don’t really hear about this too often, so we don’t actually have much information about them either. Well, not to worry, I, as always, have taken boring research works on my shoulder and from all these articles I’ve read, all the instructions I’ve memorized and all the data I’ve gathered from both personal experiences and talking with correspondents and others, I am giving you everything you need to know about exhaust fan and bathroom ventilation in a nutshell. I’m also including some of my favorites which, I think will help you finding the best bathroom fan for your bathroom. So, without any further ado, let’s get into these.

Bathroom ventilation is the term of introducing fresh air to the enclosed area of a bathroom space intentionally, in order to control the condition, temperature and humidity of the area by diluting, dehumidifying and also by displacing the polluting substance out of the bathroom.  Being such a closed and small space most of the time, a bathroom can feel uncomfortably humid and also full of bad odors. When you use a bathroom fan or exhaust fan in your bathroom, it will increase the ventilation. Your exhaust fan will fan away the moisture from the air and enable your bathroom to exhale. Thus, your bathroom will be free of humid, moist and smelly air, which will keep it nice, dry, mold-less and odor-free. So, basically, your bathroom fan is a ventilation system for your bathroom as it generally does not have any window to get fresh air inside and humid air out.

Why Do You Need Fans for Your Bathroom?

The most seen problem in bathrooms is mold and mildew. When your bathroom has a bad ventilation system, humid air stays entrapped in your bathroom. This causes foggy and moist interior, musty odor, molds and mildew and of course water vapor on the mirror. Here are some reasons you should rush to install an exhaust fan on your bathroom:

1. Moldy Bathroom Wall:

Lack of ventilation increases the humidity on air inside of your bathroom. That causes a moist and foggy inside as the moisture from using the bathroom for showering or other reason can’t get out of the space. As a result, you end up with molds and mildew on your wall. These molds cause a musty smell and make the color on the wall and ceiling pilling off, leaving you in an urgent need of 1000 dollars repairing and remodeling. And those are all the trouble that your bathroom fan can minimize as well as solve which you buy with less than 100 bucks.

2. Bad Odor:

Albeit your garlic pizza leaves heaven in your taste buds every time you eat one, but it doesn’t have the same effect on your bathroom. Okay, sorry, ew that was gross! Nevertheless, it is a really big problem you face when your bathroom smells bad. It is also embarrassing and unhygienic. Because a bathroom is such a closed area, smelly air can’t get out of there, and the fresh air can’t also enter, leaving the bathroom smelling disgusting. Also if your bathroom has poor ventilation, there will be molds growing on your bathroom’s wall, ceiling, and furniture from soaking up all the moistures from the air. It will spread a musty smell too. You know, air freshener cannot fully remove the smell. Being honest, your air freshener doesn’t really remove the odor, it only covers it with a nicer smell. These overlapping can only work for some times and then, it will smell worse than before. But an exhaust fan will remove the bad air and replace it with cool fresh air, giving a solution to your problem.

3. Slippery Floors and Stains:

As we have already established that a bathroom with poor ventilation has a foggy and humid air. As a result, there always some water vapors on your mirrors, faucets, and floor. They leave marks on your bathroom interior. Also, the floor becomes so slippery from it and also because of the water from the shower which doesn’t get the chance to evaporate. A bathroom fan will enable good ventilation for your bathroom to dry a lot sooner. 

4. Hygiene:

Well it’s not rocket science that a wet, warm and humid bathroom has an atmosphere more beneficial for the bacteria and other microorganisms to reproduce more quickly. So to keep your bathroom hygienic and safe for children, elderly and people with the poor immune system, a vent-fan is necessary!


What to Look for When Choosing the Best Bathroom Fan?

“The best bathroom fan consumer reports” states that the majority of the time, people look for a bathroom fan which is quieter and dries the air faster. There are also some other things I want you to concentrate on while buying a vent-fan for your bathroom and they are:

1. Size:

In the case of your bathroom fan, size matter! To determine the size of the exhaust fan which is right for your bathroom, you have to take the size of your bathroom on account. People will tell you the greater the capacity of your fan, the better. But it is not impossible for negative pressure to happen when your fan is more powerful for the bathroom. So for a rule of thumb, 1 CFM capacity is needed per square foot of your bathroom. Here CFM means Cubic Feet Minute.

2. Noise:

Try looking at the sound ratings prior to buy a bathroom fan. It can sound fancy, but you will find it distracting when taking a relaxing bath which will not be so relaxing anymore.

3. HVI Approval:

Fans those are certified by Home Ventilation Institute AKA HVI, are individually tested to meet the commercial standards. So HVI certified fans tend to work more accurately as promised than the rest of the options. 


This is another thing to look for while buying your first vent fan for the bathroom. A fan, which will be easy to install and maintain, is the best choice for you. You can also make the most out of your fan if you understand its manual properly. 

How to Install Your Exhaust Fan on Your Bathroom?

Installing the exhaust fan on your bathroom properly is extremely important in order to ensure a better outcome. If you don’t do it right, you may face problems like a noisier and loud fan, and dusty and musty air. So proper installment is crucial. Here’s how you do it:

Step 1 :

First thing first, you have to determine which size you need when it comes to buying an exhaust fan for your bathroom. I’ve mentioned above, that CFM is the unit which is used to measure the capacity of the exhaust fan. Calculate the area of your bathroom in square feet by using the equation;                         A = Length x Width. To calculate cubic feet, use this; V = Length x Width x Height.

Step 2:

After you have determined the size for your bathroom fan, now you have to determine the place where you will install it. Try to find a place where it will be easier for the fan to provide ventilation for the whole bathroom. Remember, your bathroom’s vent-fan must vent outside.

Step 3:

Now, you have to make an electrical route to provide the electric connection for the fan. If you don’t know much about electricity, or not comfortable with that, consult with an electrician.

Step 4:

If you already had an old exhaust fan installed in your bathroom, which was not working for you, remove it.

Step 5:

Install the vent fan following the instruction provided on manuals.

How To Clean the Exhaust Fans of Our Bathrooms?

An exhaust fan needs regular cleaning. There are some specific ways when it comes to clean a vent-fan. But cleaning it in the wrong way will do more bad than not cleaning it. So many consumers don’t know how to clean and maintain their exhaust fan of bathrooms. Then again, most people don’t clean their exhaust fan. Therefore, dust and other pollutants keep getting stuck on the vent. This ultimately lessens the lifetime of an exhaust fan and buyers can’t properly make the most out their products. So it is undeniably important for one to know how to clean their bathroom fans and clean them regularly. Every manufacturer has its own rules when it comes to clean your exhaust fan. So, first, you have to make sure that you have read the manuals thoroughly and carefully, and educated yourself about the dos and don’ts of your vent-fan regarding cleaning it. Here are some ideas that might help you:

  1. First, check for the signs that indicate that your bathroom’s exhaust fan needs cleaning. Foggy mirrors or dust on the vent are the clear indicators.

  2. Read the manuals and try to mentally visualize what you are about to do.

  3. Now turn the fan off and cut all the electrical connection related to it completely off. You have to be very careful about electricity.

  4. Gently pull the cover over the fan down by removing pins and other things that keeping it attached.

  5. Wash the fan cover with lukewarm water and soap/detergent. The most effective method is to soak a piece of cotton cloth on the soap water and then squeeze the excess water off and use the cloth to clean the cover. Try this and the cover will look as good as new.

  6. You may as well as vacuum clean the cover to get rid of all the dust.

  7. Once you are done with the cover, now it’s time to undo the fixture.

  8. With a screwdriver, try to remove all the visible screws and motor one by one.

  9. Separate the blades, motors and other surrounding parts.

  10. Clean them with the damp cotton cloth using the previous method you used on the cover of the bathroom fan.

  11. Now, removing the motor from the vent-fan can be tricky. So if you are uncomfortable or not sure about taking it out, just vacuum inside or use a bottle brush to clean.

  12. Brush the dust away off the surroundings of the vent fan.

  13. Dry the parts you have cleaned carefully.

  14. Make sure you have dried all the parts, before reinstallation.

  15. Reinstall the exhaust fan part by part. Take help from the manual (or YouTube videos).

  16. Once you have reattached all the parts now plugin to turn on the fan. Again, make sure your exhaust fan is dry.

Thus, you can clean your vents without causing harm to your vent-fan or to yourself.

My Top 10 Exhaust Fans for Your Bathroom:

I know how much overwhelming it can be when it comes to purchasing the right vent for your bathroom. To be honest, if you don’t do your research right, there is a strong chance that enormous options provided by the markets can lead you astray. To help you with finding the right exhaust fan which is affordable, durable, easy to maintain and of course which will actually do the job, I’ve added some of my favorites in this article. The list is based on the data I’ve collected both from personal experiences and researches. One more thing, don’t need to pay attention to the order as it is only for the arrangement purposes. So, let’s begin then, shall we?

This consumer’s favorite fan kit is designed to replace the most of the old exhaust fans your house has which need repairing. If you want to change your exhaust fan motors and fan blades, without changing the whole thing, this 5/8 coil stack with an inch and ¾ long shaft is just the right fit for you. Most of the time people just don’t wanna bother replacing the whole thing as it can be very exhausting because you may need to change the face of the vents and where they are situated just to change the motor of your old exhaust fan. It can be very time consuming and costly. Luckily for you, Endurance Pro Electric Motor can replace almost every brand like Ventorola, Panasonic, Broan, and other renowned brands.


  1. Contains a C01575 model motor and a fan with a radius of 4.5, flat.

  2. The main material is plastic.

  3. Voltage is 120V and Wattage is 10 Watts.

  4. Uses the metric measurement system.

  5. Doesn’t include or require batteries.

  6. Weighs approximately 1.45 pounds, mostly the motor.

  7. Retails for only 14.91 USD.

  8. The motor is mechanically reversible.

  9. Comes with a One year one question asked warranty.

  10. There is a 6 inches long electric wire with 2 prong plug.


  1. Can be a replacement to almost every model.

  2. Easy to install, clean and maintain.

  3. Is much quieter and less noisy.

  4. Dries the bathroom perfectly.

  5. Very much affordable.

  6. Durable and has a long life.

  7. Doesn’t need a battery.

  8. Has a pretty valid warranty.

  9. The material used is plastic making it more risk-free as plastic has a very high resistance to the electricity.


  1. The fit between the shaft and the fan can be tight sometimes.

I think it is a perfect fit for old houses.

This is a classic exhaust vent which offers a number of options regarding size, volt and other customizes customer wants. This 70 CFM exhaust fan is a high performing and great quality vent fan for your bathroom which check the box of your list due to customizable size, air flow, noise control and of course budget. This Delta Electronics Breez Slim fan is designed to provide you with improved air quality for your bathroom and home, as it ultimately has a more effecting ventilation system. It has a lower sound rating than most other exhaust fan, thanks to its engineers who made it producing sound as low as 0.3 sones. Not to mention that it has passed all the rigorous checking by EPA to ensure a quality service.


  1. It has a dimension of 7.5 x 7.3 x 4 inches.

  2. Provides an air flow of 70 CFM with a noisiness rating of 2.0 sones!

  3. Has a power consumption of 13.1 Watts.

  4. Fits into a 4” wall.

  5. Supports both wall and ceiling installation.

  6. Has Energy Star qualification and HVI certification.

  7. Comes with a DC Brussels motor, grille box, fan size of 7.5 x 7.25x 3.49 inches and wire.

  8. Has an LED indicator that lets you know if the fan is working alright.

  9. Retails for about 46 USD

  10. Weighs less than 5 lbs.


  1. Provides a good air flow of 70 CFM.

  2. Doesn’t make loud noises.

  3. Is durable and efficient.

  4. HVI certified!

  5. Light weighted and affordable.

  6. Comes with an LED indicator.

  7. Easily installable.

  8. Maintenance is easy.

  9. Has a less green gas emission, so eco-friendly.

  10. Energy saving.

  11. Has a warranty of 3 years.


Doesn’t support timer switch.

The HVI certificate really says it all.

What else can I say about this Panasonic Bathroom Fan except that it is one of the best and most powerful bathroom fans? This best seller is a bestselling fan for reasons. And quite valid ones, I’d say. With a loud ratting of 1, this exhaust fan produces less than 0.3 sones sound. I’d say it’s the quietest 110 CFM fan in the world. Furnished with a powerful motor and quiet fan, this exhaust fan is perfect for people who are renovating or remodeling their bathroom. It provides customers with a lot of option with a different price range which makes it more appealing. It comes with an easy to install fixture thanks to the Flex-Z Fast Installation Bracket. If you want to expand your budget, you can choose from its light/fan combo or the one with the motion sensor too.


  1. Item model number is FV-08-11VF5.

  2. Has a dimension of 10.2x10.2x5.6 inches.

  3. Weighs approximately 11.4 pounds.

  4. Uses the Galvanized Steel as material.

  5. Has options like a fan only, fan/light combo and fan with motion sensor.

  6. Produces noise lesser than 1.5 Sone.

  7. Includes 4-inch duct and 3-inch duct adapter.

  8. GFCI protected.

  9. Has a detachable installation adapter.

  10. Airflow capacity 80 to 110 CFM.

  11. Measures in the metric system.

  12. The model with light features a flush mount grille with (2) 13W self-ballasted GU24 base CFL lamps.


  1. One of the quietest exhaust fans.

  2. Doesn’t have lingering sound.

  3. Easy to install, maintain and clean.

  4. The lighted model provides sufficient light.

  5. Named as “Most efficient” in 2018.

  6. Flexible and durable.

  7. Budge-friendly and comes with lots of options.

  8. Doesn’t distract.

  9. Has a warranty of 3 years.

  10. A perfect replacement for the older unit.


1.The user manual can be a bit of confusing.

Really don’t see a reason not to buy it.

This is a wall-mounted fan which can be an easy solution for many problems, thanks to its versatility. Not many exhaust fans deliver what they promised, unlike the Broan Ventilation Fan. It removes moisture from the air and bad odors simultaneously, eliminating the chances for the airborne diseases. It delivers a great deal with a customer friendly budget. As the design is compact, it doesn’t take a lot of places. I think most people will find the installation easy enough to comply with. It has acquired critics’ attention with its sleek design and excellent performances without any potential drawbacks. One thing may seem like a disadvantage to lots of people, and it is that this model won’t work as fast for the larger space as it will do for the compact bathrooms. Apart from that, it is a great exhaust fan at a great price.  


  1. This exhaust fan is great for its versatility.

  2. Has a dimension of 7.5 x 7.2 x 3.6 inches.

  3. Weighs around 3 pounds.

  4. Item model number is 688.

  5. Able to eliminate humidity, tobacco smell, and kitchen odor.

  6. Has a 4.0 sone sound rating.

  7. Grilles are polymeric and paintable.

  8. The motor is permanently lubricated.

  9. Has polymeric blower wheel.

  10. Ever so easy to remove the motor, no screw required.

  11. Airflow capacity is 50 CFM.


  1. Has an easily blend-able with the background feature.

  2. Easily installable.

  3. Provides a great efficiency level.

  4. Not too noisy to disturb you when you are taking a relaxing bath, but not too quiet either for you not to know if it’s working or not.

  5. Is very versatile.

  6. Has a sleek design in it that suits your bathroom décor perfectly.

  7. Pretty affordable compared to the other exhaust fans.

  8. Can be a very easy and convenient replacement for your old vents.

  9. Has a very powerful and durable motor.


  1. Not that quiet.

  2. Doesn’t work as good for the big bathrooms as it does for the compact ones.

The motor is very well built, which is a clear indicator of the quality.

One thing is established in this article, and this is that our bathroom needs fresh air in and the humid air out, and BV Ultra-Quiet Exhaust fan does a pretty darn good job regarding this! This particular fan is one of very few the high-end fans that I’ve included on my list, and let me tell you, it will be worth your every penny. I have used this vent fan for my bathroom, and it continuously delivers a very satisfactory result to me. It will remove the moisture from the air and replace the warm, smelly air with the cool fresh air. So bye-bye steamy mirrors and slippery floors.


  1. It is a mounting operable ventilation fan.

  2. It is workable for a bathroom with an area of up to 90 square feet.

  3. Weighs around 10.5 pounds.

  4. The item number is BV-BF-01.

  5. Has a dimension of 10 x 8 x 10 inches.

  6. Used material is metal.

  7. Airflow capacity varies from 90 CFM to 110 CFM.

  8. Has an AC power source.

  9. Amperage capacity is 0.2 Ampere.

  10. Sound level is 0.8 sones.

  11. UL approved and HVI and Energy STAR certified.


  1. Easy to install, as the instruction book provides you with step by step instruction.

  2. Doesn’t produce loud noises.

  3. The price is just right in the light of its quality.

  4. Maintenance is easy.

  5. HVI certificate makes it trustable to deliver excellence.

  6. No question asked one year warranty.

  7. Very durable, well built, and good quality material.


1.This exhaust fan doesn’t provide with on-fan switch.

This exhaust fan does a good job in delivering promises, I’d say.

Just had to add another one from Delta Electronics as this DC brushless motor equipped exhaust fan won’t let you down. The LED indicator light always comes handy letting you when the exhaust fan is running. The modern grille design has a nice touch on it. The brushless motor delivers you a number of advantages, naming- quiet operation, longevity as it Will outrun many of your household item, and of course energy saving. This versatile exhaust fan allows you to choose whether to install it on the wall or on the ceiling depending on what works best for you. It is well built and suits modern bathroom décor. It is not noisy at all, but you still can hear you running which in the case of OCD like me, helps. This is eco-friendly too, as it releases less greenhouse gas.


  1. The part number is GBR100

  2. Fits in a 4-inch duct.

  3. Has a weight of 1 pound.

  4. Product dimension is 8.2 x 8 x 6.8 inches.

  5. Available in so many models.

  6. Some of the models have a fan/light combination.

  7. Some of the models even provide with the motion sensor.

  8. Made with Galvanized Steel.

  9. Airflow capacity is 100 CFM.

  10. Sound level is 1 Sone.

  11. Retails for 5 to 17 USD.

  12. Energy efficiency is near 7.1 to 11 CFM/Watts.


  1. Light weighted.

  2. Quiet and efficient.

  3. Comes with a strong and durable motor.

  4. Well-built and sleek designed.

  5. Has a good air flow of 100 CFM.

  6. Perfect for drying the bathroom quickly and quietly.

  7. Last for years.

  8. Affordable yet fulfill promises.

  9. Easy to install and maintain.


  1. Hard to install if you don’t have full attic access.

The attic access can’t hold you back if you have an existing vent.

Most of the house owners face a certain problem when they try to find the perfect fan for their bathroom and it is to find an exhaust fan with a motor powerful enough to work for the full-size bathrooms. Where most manufacturers don’t make exhaust fan with air flow capacity higher than 190 CFM, Panasonic is ever so different. So typical of it, as Panasonic always delivers quality through quality. This ultra-powerful exhaust fan by Panasonic will work wonder for your luxurious master bathroom. Personally, I’m a big fan. This Panasonic FV-30VQ3 exhaust fan leaves my mirrors bone dry, within seconds after my shower. My floor is no slippery anymore, and I can furnish my bathroom with expensive furniture without worrying about molds. I’d say it will also work great for your master bedroom or conference room. But don’t use it in the kitchen, as it can be hazardous.


  1. Equipped with a fully enclosed vapor collecting motor and attenuated,

  2. Has dolphin shaped bladed blower wheel.

  3. UL listed for the bathrooms.

  4. Has enclosure when used with a GFCI branch circuit wire.

  5. Has an Air flow capacity of 290 CFM.

  6. Uses Sirocco type blower wheel.

  7. Is made of heavy-gauge zinc galvanized steel.

  8. Duct Diameter is 6-Inch.

  9. Mounting Opening is 12 x 3/16 inches.

  10. Has a dimension of 15 x 15 x 10.2 inches.

  11. Color is white.

  12. Weighs around 17.45 pounds.

  13. Retails for around 198 USD.


  1. Dries the bathroom faster.

  2. Has a great powerful motor.

  3. Very well built.

  4. Does wonder for the big bathroom.

  5. Last longer.

  6. Not really hard to install.


  1. More on the pricey side.

  2. Overkill for the smaller bathroom.

If you have a big bathroom like me, you can trust the product.

This is so far the prettiest exhaust fan I’ve seen. And hey, it’s not just a pretty face. This fan/light combo is a real beast when comes to replace an old fan. It has a powerful motor too.


  1. The item number is 83002.

  2. Weighs around 20 pounds.

  3. Product dimension is 16.7 x 16.5 x 15 inches.

  4. Color and finish is imperial bronze.

  5. Has a Contemporary style.

  6. Used material is glass and metal, round shaped.

  7. Power source is AC.

  8. Comes with a 6-year limited warranty for the parts and a 5-year limited warranty for the motor.

  9. Airflow capacity is 110 CFM.


  1. Very chic looking.

  2. Also comes with a light.

  3. Easy to install.

  4. Screwless design.

  5. The exhaust fan does a pretty good job.

  6. Sound level is 3 sones.

  7. Moves a lot of air.


  1. The glass shade kind of blocks the light.

  2. Not a big fan of the noise it produces.

Ah well, it brings about your bathroom aesthetics.

Broan is a reliable name in the world of ventilation. It has been a trustworthy loyal friend 1932. It has produced so many amazing and market-leading products, and InVent Series Single Speed Fan is one of them. It is an ideal choice for people with compact bathroom to keep it mold and mildew free and to be provided with fresh dry air.


  1. Item weight is 10 pounds.

  2. Dimension is 9.2 x 10 x 5.2 inches.

  3. Manufactured by Broan-Nutone.

  4. The item number is AE80B.

  5. Ranked #9 in Household Vents.

  6. Retails for 39.82 USD.

  7. Adapts to 3” exhaust duct.


  1. Very quiet and efficient.

  2. Works charm for the small bathrooms.

  3. Has a great range.

  4. Affordable and handy.

  5. Dries the floor well.


  1. Too thick to mount on the wall. 

Compact bathroom owners can swear by it.

Okay, this is my third Broan exhaust fan and I promise I’m going to give you valid reasons for it. This ceiling exhaust fan for your bathroom is, as the name suggests, very quiet. This product is very good at delivering its promises. And with this price, it’s just magical.


  1. It is made in USA or Imported.

  2. This exhaust fan runs on 0.3 Sones.

  3. Its motor is engineered for continuous operation.

  4. Operates at 80 CFM in bathrooms up to 75 sq. ft.

  5. Needs only 2" x 8" construction space.

  6. If connected to a GFCI protected branch circuit, it can be used over showers.

  7. It has a hanger bar system to make your exhaust fan installation easier for any kind of construction.

  8. Needs a 6" ducting for superior performance

  9. ENERGY STAR certified and HVI certified.


  1. Literally doesn’t make any sound!

  2. Easy to install.

  3. Doesn’t need full access to the attic.

  4. Sleek and modern design, don’t have an overpowering appearance.


1. May require you to change the existing duct.

You won’t even realize that the fan is on. So you will love it, assuming that it wouldn’t be a problem.


So, that was my attempt to educate you guys about the bathroom fans. I hope the article was informative and worth your time. Try to make an educated choice. That being said, please invest your time and money carefully. I wish you all the best buying your exhaust fan. Hope you have a good experience with your exhaust fan and enjoy a mold-free, odor free, dry bathroom.

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(Last Updated On: April 24, 2021)
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