How to select a Utility Room Fan

Firstly, you need to measure the size of your Utility Room. To use our fan selection tool (located in the search area to the right) the measurements need to be in metres.

Definitions

A Utility room for the purposes of this how to” guide is a room or area where your Washing Machine and or Tumble Dryer are housed 

If this area is included in your Kitchen area, please use the how to select a kitchen fan” guide and include this area in your measurements. 

Example

Let’s say the length of your Utility Room is 3 metres, the width is 2 metres, and the height is 2.4 metres.

WxLxH

That would be: 3 x 2 x 2.4 = 14.4 m³ (the volume).

For a Utility Room we recommend 20 air changes an hour, or a minimum of 108 m³ an hour (or 30 litres a second).

In this example the amount of air that should be extracted from the Utility Room is:

  • 14.4 m³ (the area of the Utility Room)
  • x 20 air changes an hour
  • = 288 m³/​hr

This is above the minimum we recommend of 108 m³/​hr.

So in this example the fan required for a Utility Room 3 metres x 2 metres x 2.4 metres is:

288 m³/​hr or 80 litres a second

Most domestic fan manufacturers publish the fan performance in m3/​hr or litres per second (l/​s).

If you use our fan selection tool a list of fans suitable for your Utility Room will be displayed. The only thing left to consider are:

  • Price
  • Design
  • Noise
  • Extra functions e.g. Back Draught Shutters, Run On Timer, Humidity Sensor, Passive Infra-red (PIR) Sensor

Important Note — Building regulations state in a room with no openable window, an intermittent extract fan should be used with a run on facility set to a minimum of 15 minutes.”

We assume this is what the majority of people usually consider – with price being the biggest driver. With that in mind, we would recommend you should consider the following:

  • Price – remember most of the time you get what you pay
  • Noise – Not usually as much of a consideration as other areas of the house, this room houses your washing machine and your tumble dryer which normally make more noise than the fan, we would however still recommend a fan with a noise level no higher than 45dB(A) at 1.5 metres from the listener to maintain comfort
  • Extra Functions – For a Utility room we would suggest the use of a humidistat, the reason? Washing Machines and Tumble Dryers will create humidity, which can lead to damp and moisture related problems
  • Design – you will always find a fan to suit your design requirements, we would suggest this is not as important as the other areas of the house.
  • Environment – Legislation requirements for fans (such as Part F and Part L) now mean Utility Room fans are available to suit every environmental need. These include Low carbon and Low voltage as the major options. In the short term the greener you want to be the more you pay. But in the long term the overall cost to you and the planet should be lower.
  • Note on Extra functions – If you think yes” I want my Utility Room extractor fan to have extra functions, we suggest where possible these are bought a separate items. For example for a Utility room we recommend a fan with a humidistat, buy the fan and humidistat as two separate items, the reason? Buying the fan with a built in humidistat will cost a lot more than without, and if the fan or the humidistat becomes faulty (nothing lasts forever) you’ll need to spend more money to replace it. If you buy them a separate items and one becomes faulty you only need to replace that item, thus saving money.
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