Fish room ventilation fans. Opinions needed

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by sfsuphysics, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Ok, I know a few of you have ventilation fans due to have either large tanks and/or enclosed fish rooms, and I was wondering what type of fans you have and how large they're rated for.

    I'm looking at the Panasonic whisper series fans, while more expensive than the ones you normally can get at the big box store I've read a lot of good reviews about them, and while I doubt the tank is going to be dead silent reducing one sound source as much as possible sounds like a good investment.

    So what sort of CFM rating should I look at? I'll have in the neighborhood of 500g worth of water volume. It'll be hooked to a humidistat so it doesn't run constantly (better not!). The entire tank is going to be enclosed, I'm not sure if actual cubic feet is relevant, but it'll be somewhere in the neighborhood of 320 cubic feet when you count all the enclosed area, however fish tanks/stand/etc will take up a sizeable percentage of that volume.

    Also there's a slight problem in that the fan can not be ceiling mounted, it needs to be wall mounted (long story, joists run the wrong way for me to be comfortable drilling a 4" hole though a bunch). Panasonic has a wall mount, but it's only for like 110CFM not sure if that's good enough or not. Not sure if I can mount a ceiling fan sideways into the wall or if orientation of the fan is critical to it's operation. I could always use an inline fan as well too as they have some that are rated for fairly large volumes, although they are a bit louder so I'm guessing not as efficient as one where the fan is next to the humidity source.
    JAR likes this.
  2. Kensington Reefer

    Kensington Reefer Supporting Member

    Check the hydroponic forums
    Kmooresf likes this.

    BAYMAC Guest

  4. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I have an older Panasonic fan. Been running non-stop for years. Super quiet. You have to touch it to know it is on.
    The new Whisper Green looks great. Hmm ... Might be worth the upgrade for power savings.

    Personally, I would run the smallest possible - 50 CFM. But run it 24/7.
    Keep in mind that even 50 cubic feet is a lot of volume every minute.
    These fans are built for people taking hot showers. Overkill for even big tanks.
    Something a lot larger can actually impact your entire house, and affect heating/cooling bills.
    Running it non stop really helps keep the mold away.

    For me, the most important feature was lack of noise. I tried to target below 1 sone. (Yeah, sones, not dB)
    I think the Panasonic is 0.3 sones.
  5. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Yeah I was wondering about how much steam/mist gets airborne during a shower, while a shower doesn't put anywhere near as much water in the air as a tank, it also does so over a smaller time frame 10-30 minutes (or more if you're my wife...) .

    The problem I have with running it non-stop is I don't want a permanent 50cfm worth of cool air blowing into my tank enclosure. The whole point of me enclosing my tank is to keep the heat in there as much as possible so I don't build this wundertank and then shit kittens when I see the first electricity bill. I figure a humidistat with a hysteresis control and I can turn the fan on to pull out moist air when it gets too humid (also need to figure out what is "too much" humidity), and it can go on/off as necessary.

    Quiet is high on my list too, unfortunately unless I go to 50cfm there doesn't seem to be any under 1 sone.

    As to the inline fans, I did some measuring and those might not be an option anymore, as there's not a whole helluva lot of space to work with.
  6. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Well, nothing like battling physics in a no-win situation.
    Most of your heat loss is due to evaporation. Probably 80% plus.
    Evaporation is of course, an inverse function of humidity. Less humidity = more evaporation.
    Interestingly, the warmer the air, the more humidity it holds, thus the more evaporation also.
    So weirdly, it is unclear if a warmer stand can cause MORE heat loss.
    You want to do the math on that???

    At any rate, that humidity you want to keep down, and temp you want to keep up, are working against
    that heat you want to keep in. Fun stuff. :)

    PS: Regardless, you WILL crap those kittens as you say, when you get your power bill. :eek:
    Well, unless you are already outside sleeping in the dog house, because the wife opened the bill first.
  7. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Well I'm comparing the heat loss to my current situation, where tanks are in a room that's perpetually in the low 60s, and that radiative heat transfer is a function of the temperatures to the fourth power! Also nothing to scoff at. Assume 80F (299.8K) water 60F (288.7K) vs. someone with their tank in their home that's usually a comfortable 70F (294.3K). I'm losing almost twice as much power just due to radiation, one of the main reasons I tend to run my tanks on the cooler side (75F or so).

    That still think I'll come out ahead. Or I'll have a fire sale after a few months and declare I'm out of the hobby :)
  8. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Or buy a gas heater.:cool:
  9. gimmito

    gimmito Guest

    +1 on the Panasonic Whisper Quite fans. I bought mine at House of Fans in the SF. I have the same problem as you and mounted the fan vertically (the gentleman at HoF said it was fine and actually had a demo fan mounted that way). I have a pic of the fan and model number in my thread...good luck finding it though. :p
  10. JAR

    JAR Supporting Member

    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
  11. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Jon: That was a model I was looking at, I can fit a 6" duct in, the problem is I don't know if I can fit that whole unit in the wall.

    Jim: It's ok, the actual model doesn't matter I've been looking at Panasonic's website and depending upon rating, version, ec.

    Mark: Got a gas heater, and trust me, modifying it to heat the tank has weighed on me since there's only two tiers for natural gas and they don't go anywhere near as high as electricity

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