How to Install a Dryer Booster Fan for Better Ventilation

If a dryer is vented to a piece of ductwork that is very long, the dryer may not be powerful enough to push the hot air through the entire duct and out of the house. To solve this issue, you can install a “booster fan” into the ductwork, which is a small fan that, once installed, is located within the duct and works by drawing the air from the dryer towards the exterior vent. You can install a dryer booster fan yourself easily using basic tools and construction knowledge, saving your home from potential humidity and molding issues.

Locate the Installation Area

Determine where in the ventilation ductwork you want to install the booster fan. The fan should ideally be placed near the mid-point between the dryer and the ductwork’s exit vent, however, the fan must be at least five feet away from the dryer due to heat issues. Find a location that seems most suitable and mark it with a marker.

Prepare the Duct

Pull the ductwork apart where two pieces connect if applicable. If the ductwork is one solid piece, you’ll need to saw the duct in half using a hacksaw. Be sure to wear safety goggles and a respirator before cutting. Once cut, the metal will be sharp, so exercise caution.

Install the Fan

Place the booster fan, which is in the shape of a piece of ventilation, onto one half of the duct, then slide it onto the other half. Press the pieces together firmly to ensure that the fan is wedged in place all the way. If your fan has a control box, you should make sure that it is facing outwards so that you can easily access it if necessary.

If your booster fan has a mounting bracket, be sure to screw it into a stud in the wall or a floor joist, depending on where your booster fan is located. The bracket will help support the fan’s weight and keep the blades from pinching or the ductwork from sagging.

Power the Fan

Once the fan is completely installed and secured with a mounting bracket, you’ll need to power the fan in order to use it. Most fans have a simple cord that you plug into a wall outlet or extension cord. Some more sophisticated booster fans, however, have wires that you can splice into a power line; do not attempt this unless you have advanced electrical knowledge; incorrect splicing could result in a house fire or fatal injury. Turn the fan on by flipping its switch. The fan will detect when the dryer is venting air and automatically turn on, aiding the appliance.

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