Best Solar Vents for your home : Buying Guide & Expert Advice

Solar Vents rock – they are great for the environment and save you money. A solar roof vent aka solar roof fan aka solar attic fan consists of a solar-powered fan that drives air out of the attic and ventilates the entire attic and thus your home. The solar vent is installed on your roof to remove hot air from your attic. They best solar attic fans or solar vents are inexpensive to install and can save money by decreasing the air conditioner’s workload.

Hot air tends to rise and during the summer months into your attic making it unbearably warm. If you go into your attic on a warm day you will be shocked by the heat wave you will face there. Of course in the winter the attic is the warmest place in your home. There is always a significant temperature difference between the rest of your home and the attic.  The solar vent is designed to remove this hot air especially during summers and help lower the temperature in the house. If your attic cools down it cools down the rest of your home as well. This reduces your air conditioners load and reduces your electric bill.

A solar vent as you must have guessed is powered by the sun.  The solar roof vent will come with a handy solar panel attachment which usually mounts on top of it on the roof. This unit captures the energy of the sun and and helps power the vent to remove hot air.

Solar roof vents are green and environment friendly and use no electricity.  The solar vent actually helps reduce the amount of time your air conditioner runs during the summer months thus decreasing carbon dioxide and other harmful emissions into the environment.

All good things come with some baggage. The solar vents are not suitable for all homes. Homes which get little sun light are obviously unsuitable for solar vents.  The location of a home as well as the solar vent also determine the effectiveness of the solar vent. Some homes may not see much benefit from a solar vents due to their location and the position of the solar vent. Solar roof vents don’t work well on cloudy and overcast days.

The positives win and and you are seeing more and more folks rushing to get their attics vented using solar vents. Here are some of the most best reviewed solar vents available in the market.

Contents

Comparison Table
Thermal Switch for Attic Fan
Difference with Ridge Vent 
What size of attic fan do I need?
Solar Vent Reviews


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Image Brand Watts CFM Fan dia Price Review
Rand 8 w 435 cfm 9″ Prices Read Review
Ecoworthy 25 w 1500 cfm 14.5″ Prices Read Review
Brightwatts 12.6 w 1000 cfm 15″ Prices Read Review
Durabuild 20 w 1250 cfm 12.5″ Prices Read Review
Ecoworthy 30 w 1960 cfm 12.5″ Prices Read Review
Ventamatic 12.6 w 1000 cfm 12.5″ Prices Read Review
Natural Light 12.6 w 1339 cfm 12.5″ Prices Read Review
Energy Systems 12.6 w 1550 cfm 12.5″ Prices Read Review

Do you need a Thermal Switch along with your Solar Attic Fan?

A thermal switch is recommended in colder locations where you have temperature dropping below zero during winters an snow accumulation is common. Since the Solar attic fan or vent removes air from your attic and moves it outdoors, it could lead to significant heat loss in winter if the warmer air inside your attic is moved out. This will result in high heating bills which is something you definitely want to avoid with todays high oil and electric heating costs.

The thermal switch will prevent the fan from operating when the attic is below 80-90 degrees F. A thermal switch is wasted if you live in warm areas like Florida, Texas or Arizona.  Another frequent misconception is that the solar attic fan would lead to reduced moisture buildup and also prevent ice dams during winter.

This is not true as the attic fans typically work during the days an not at night when ice damming and moisture buildup happens.

What is the difference between a Solar Attic Fan/Vent and Ridge Vents or gable vents ?

Most homes have Ridge or Gable or Dormer Vents and these are vents are not mechanically powered. They vent out hot air relying on the natural convection i.e. the movement of hot air rising and moving out naturally through these passive vents to the outdoors.

However, as you have probably noticed, they are not very effective at reducing the temperature of your attic. The limitation of natural convection, mechanical problems and the dependence on draft all make these passive venting options inferior to the active or forced draft air convection solutions like Solar Attic Fans or Vents.

Active vents create a much more powerful air draft through your attic compared to the natural draft created by Ridge, Gable or Dormer vents.

The strong active movement of air created by solar attic vents keeps the attic cool throughout the day.

What size of solar attic fan do I need?

This answer is a little technical but you might want to spend some time doing this research. Typically a solar attic vent or any other active vent or fan should recirculate 10 attic air volumes per hour.  The first step is find the volume of your attic in cubic feet; think length x breadth and height in feet.  Multiply that by 10 for the ten air changes it needs. This gives you the volume in cubic feet (CF) of the air that needs to be removed every hour.

Attic Vent specification will have a CFM figure or cubic feet per minute figure to indicate size. Divide the CF figure you calculated earlier by 60 minutes to give you your required CFF for your attic. If the figure is larger than the CFM rating of your selected attic fan, just increase the number of fans to match your CFM requirement.

Since you are exhausting out the hot air from your attic to the outside, it is very important that you have inlets for letting in fresh air from outside to replenish the exhausted air. The inlets for fresh air are typically your Soffit vents. You need about a square feet of inlet for every 360 com of exhaust.

The size of the motor powered by the solar panels is another consideration. If you want to see your attic fan spin a little faster you might want to invest in an additional solar panel.

In those circumstances it is beneficial to have a higher powered (watts) motor.

BEST SOLAR VENTS

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This listing of the best solar vents is based on customer reviews.  I  have included the most popular solar attic fans with the best reviews. These are available for immediate shipping through Amazon and have extensive positive reviews.

Rand Solar Powered Attic Fan-8 Watt-W Roof Top Ventilator

Best Solar Vents Rand SolarThe new Rand 8 Watt Solar Attic Fan with its high quality attic fan, you will dramatically cut your cooling costs in the summer. Your attic can get hotter than 160 degrees in the summer. This heat works its way into your house, and makes it more difficult to cool it in the summer. With this attic fan, you can cool your attic temperatures by up to 50 degrees. In the spring and fall, you may not need air conditioning at all! In the summer, it will dramatically decrease the amount of time that your air conditioning needs to run. And, since it is all powered by the sun, you will get these benefits at no cost to you! It also provides needed ventilation to decrease moisture and water vapor in your attic.

This, combined with the decreased attic temperature, can increase the longevity of your entire roof system. This Rand Solar Attic Fan provides up to 435 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of ventilation, and can successfully cool an attic space up to 700 square feet. This compact fan is great for small spaces. Or, for larger spaces you can add more fans to get the job done. This solar vent is great for sheds, greenhouses, campers, boats, covered patios, dog houses, chicken coops, etc.

The features of this Rand Solar Attic Fan are as follows: The hole diameter that needs to be cut for installation is approximately 11″. Fan blade diameter is 9″. Includes 5 year parts warranty.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 700 sq ft Attic Fan Unit
Ventilation : 435 cfm w inbuilt Solar Module
Poly crystalline Solar Module Weight 5.6 pounds
17″ L X 17″ W X 4.75″
Fan diameter : 9 inches


Eco-Worthy 65W Solar Power Attic Gable Fan

Best Solar Vents Eco Worthy

This Eco Worthy solar powered  attic fan with high efficiency brushless motor keeps you a quiet environment. It can fully vents up to 2,200 square feet area, and provides up to 1500 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of ventilation.

The 25  watt poly solar panel comes with 16 feet of cable and allows for the panel to installed at the optimum locations with maximum exposure to the sun. The corrosion-resistant aluminum frame ensures extended life for the solar panel. The fan works at low voltage as well, so you also get great ventilation even in cloudy days.

This shell of the unit is made of high strength stainless steel. The blades are made of Aluminum alloy and are rated for more than a 1000 hours of operation. The solar panel is warrantied to produce up to 80% power for 25 years. A very good option in the list of workhorse solar vents.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 2200 sq ft 1pc 65W Solar Gable Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1500 cfm 1pc 25W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module 1 set Mounting Brackets
20.5″ x 14.4″ x 0.7in
Fan diameter : 14.5 inches


Brightwatts: Premium Solar Attic Fan, Ultra Efficient Brushless DC Motor, Rust Protective Material

Best Solar Vents Brightwatts

This Bright Watts solar powered gable attic fan with high efficiency brushless motor keeps you a quiet environment. It can fully vents up to 1,200 square feet area, and provides up to 1000 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of ventilation.

Installation is quick and easy with no electrical wiring required.  Its a fully assembled in the box unit. This unit has been weather  tested at 110 mph sustained wind with 8 inches of rain per hour and there was no water entry into the attic.  The unit is built with heavy duty powder coated galvanized steel.  The panels are built with high-impact tempered solar cell casings and are hail and wind resistant. Solar vents like this are great for mid sized attics.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 1200 sq ft 1pc 24W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1000 cfm 1pc 12.6W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module 1 set Angle Brackets
24.25″x 24.25″ x 14.5″
Fan diameter : 15 inches

Durabuild 527S-DUB-106-BLK Roof Mount Solar Powered Attic Fan, 20-wattBest Solar Vents Durabuild

The Durabuild 20W solar attic fan helps reduce energy usage by exhausting hot air from attics by using a solar powered attic fan. This will reduce potential mold and increase roof life by exhausting moist air. A whisper quiet 24 volt motor is powered by an industrial grade 20 watt solar panel that is thermostatically controlled. When the conditioned space reaches 85 degrees, the motor turns on and once it cools to 65 degrees, it will shut off.

One unit will condition up to 1850 square feet. Since it is powered by solar energy, there is zero cost usage and it does not require an electrician to install. The durable Grade 5 ASB shroud is impact and UV resistant. Shroud and panel are adjustable to maximize sun exposure. Oversized galvanized & powder coated flashing resists rust and protects against leaks. Wire mesh keeps unwanted rodents out.

There is a limited 5 year warranty on the fan and 20 year warranty on the solar panel. This unit could qualify for federal and/or local tax rebates. This is another workhorse in the list of best solar vents.

Specifications In the Package Check Pricing
Attic size per fan : 1850 sq ft 1pc 20W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1250 cfm 1pc 20W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module
23 x 9.7 x 26.2 inches
Weight 20.5 pounds

ECO-WORTHY 25W Solar Powered Attic Ventilator Gable Roof Vent Fan with 30W Foldable Solar Panel

Best Solar Lights Litom LED 200This Eco Worthy solar powered  attic fan with high efficiency brushless motor keeps you a quiet environment. It can fully vents up to 2,200 square feet area, and provides up to 1960 CFM (cubic feet per minute) of ventilation.

The 30W foldable watt poly solar panel comes with 16 feet of cable and allows for the panel to installed at the optimum locations with maximum exposure to the sun. The corrosion-resistant aluminum frame ensures extended life for the solar panel. The fan works at low voltage as well, so you also get great ventilation even in cloudy days.

This shell of the unit is made of high strength stainless steel. The blades are made of Aluminum alloy and are rated for more than a 1000 hours of operation. The solar panel is warrantied to produce up to 80% power for 25 years. Another sturdy workhorse in this stable of best solar vents.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 2200 sq ft 1pc 20W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1960 cfm 1pc 30W Poly foldable Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module Adjustable Angle Mount
15.2 x 14.5 x 9.8 inches
Weight 14.3 pounds

Ventamatic VX2515SOLUPS Solar Gable Attic Ventilator with 12.6-Watt 18-Volt DC Motor and 12.6-Watt Panel

Best Solar Vents Ventamatic 30

This premium 24 V bushless DC motor fan is thermostatically controlled at 80 degrees. The accompanying  12.6w Solar Panel is constructed with high efficiency polycrystalline cells  that generate DC power at 18 Volts to power the DC attic fan.

The Ventamatic Solar Powered Gable Ventilator with a powerful 12.6 watt 18 volt DC Motor has no energy costs. It is powered by a 12.6 W solar panel. You would need an additional panel to make the unit affective in spaces upto 1500 sq feet. It comes with a steel flange and steel dome. With an additional panel it can ventilate attics up to 1,000 cfm. There is no wiring to the AC main power source. The total weight of the unit with solar panels is 23 pounds. The Ventamatic factory is 100% powered by wind , 95% of all waste products are recycled and the packaging is recycled cardboard. A green and socially responsible company. Amongst this list of solar vents , this solar attic fan is suited for a mid sized homes.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 1500 sq ft 1pc 18 W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1000 cfm 1pc 12.6 W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module Adjustable Angle Mount
16 x 16 x 11 inches
Weight 12.9 pounds

Solar Powered Attic Fan – 24 Watt Gable Exhaust Vent – Natural Light

Natural Light Solar Powered Attic Fan – 24 Watt Gable Exhaust Vent – Natural Light Solar Attic Fan is a simple and environmentally sensible solution that can protect your home and even save you money. Powered completely by free solar energy, this sleek and efficient attic vent is compact, quiet and powerful! Simply, the function of a solar attic fan is to improve attic air circulation resulting in a healthy, energy efficient home. Solar attic fans pull hot air and moisture out of your attic extending the life of your roof. In summer months, it keeps your attic cooler helping reduce the load on your HVAC system. In winter months, it prevents moisture build-up and ice damming. Natural Light Solar Attic Fans are one of the best in their class with the highest standards for quality and functionality. It caries a  25 year product warranty – which is amongst the best in the industry. The Easy 1 Hour Typical Installation also qualifies for solar tax credits. Common Application: Used on residential homes with an existing gable vent. Operating up to 1,339 cfm, the Natural Light Energy Systems 24-W Gable Mounted Solar Attic Fan can fully vent up to 2,100 square feet. This makes it our list of workhorse solar vents.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 2100 sq ft 1pc 24 W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1339 cfm 1pc 12.6 W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module Adjustable Angle Mount
21.6 x 21.6 x 9.2 inches
Weight 12.9 pounds


Energy Systems Solar Powered Attic Fan 30 wattBest Solar Vents Energy Systems

The Energy Systems Solar Powered Attic fan has a  30w crystalline solar panel with mounting brackets. With a fan Blade:12” diameter and 5-blade aluminum with balanced hub Protective Animal Screen: 304# stainless steel wire screen mesh Fasteners and nuts: 304# stainless steel Solar Attic Fans provide active ventilation and space and lower the temperature and removing moisture build-up – giving you a cooler house, reduced attic mold and mildew, and a more comfortable living environment can ventilate up to 2800 square feet of attic space with a single fan making it a worthy entry in the list of workhorse solar vents.

Specifications In the Package
Attic size per fan : 2800 sq ft 1pc 30 W Solar Attic Vent
Ventilation : 1550 cfm 1pc 12.6 W Poly Solar Panel
Poly crystalline Solar Module Adjustable Angle Mount
22″ x 22″ x10.5″ inches
Weight 24.3 pounds

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