Like many people reading this review, you’re probably wondering what's the best bathroom extractor fan to use in your bathroom to stop bathroom smells and condensation dampness from ruining structures around your bathroom.
Bathroom fans are must home improvement if you’re going to be doing some DIY and need to tidy up that old bathroom with something slightly more economical, quieter or simply better. As soon as you have it up and running you will see the the benefits
Choosing a bathroom extracted fan can often be a really difficult choice as there is so much competition on the market. The biggest problem is that extractor fans are so easy to design and manufacture that you not only have those by the brand named companies on the market, but also a selection of cheap imports that have been made in china.
One thing that all extractor fans have in common is that they have been designed to fit the industry standard 100mm/4-Inch ventilation duct size as set out by the building regulations across the UK.
The problem is, this is about it and as we found in this review, there is no one extractor fan that is the same as the next. In this review we’re looking at the best bathroom extractor fans across the market and deciding which fans you should be buying and more importantly, which you should be leaving in the shop.
The Best Bathroom Extractor Fan
If you don't want to read the whole review and simply want to know what's the best bathroom extractor fan on the market then check out the Manrose QF100T “Quiet” Extractor Fan. It's easily our favorite and whilst it does not come with all the technological advancements of others, what it does come with it does extremely well.
It's easily our favorite and whilst it does not come with all the technological advancements of others, what it does come with it does extremely well. We love the fact the Manrose extractor fan has been designed both for window and wall use and has been designed as a "quiet fan" meaning that you can get to sleep even when the fan is on. According to the manufacture sound levels can be as low as 27db, however we could not get it lower than 30db which is still very good.
It comes as standard with a timer which can be set to run from 1-to-30 Minutes, has an extractor rate of 22 lires per second whilst using a maximum of 4.8Watts. The backdraft shutter works well and whilst we could not get the sound as low as the manufacture, there are over 500 reviews online here, with over 300 being 5-stars. For a value for money extract fan, this is definatly a great product that will not let you down.
What is a Bathroom Extractor Fan?
Bathroom extractor fans have two key uses. Firstly they are an important feature in a bathroom that does not have windows to draw out and replace the air. This is useful for any bad smells that may occur when you use the bathroom.
The second use and probably the most important use for an extractor fan is to draw out the damp air after you have had a hot shower for example and replace it with dry air. Damp, mositure rich air can cause serious damage to your home as it will cause mould to grow and can weaken structures costing thousands of pounds to repair.
Bathroom extractor fans are required as per building regulation across the UK meaning that if you do not have a bathroom extractor fan, it’s important that you fit one if you’re thinking of renting your home out.
Bathroom Extractor Fan's - The Range
Timer / Humidity
21 Litres Per Sec.
Envirovent Silent 100 HT
26 Litres Per Sec
70 Litres per Sec
Vents 100 Silenta
22 Litres Per Sec.
22 Litres Per Sec
28 Litres Per Sec.
19 Litres Per Sec.
If You Don’t Have A Bathroom Extractor Fan
If you don't have a bathroom extractor fan, you need to fit one to see the benefits. Fitting an extractor is not a difficult process and should not be something that you should worry about, however it may require some specialist tools if you’re wanting to do it yourself. Choosing where to fit your extractor fan leaves you with three options:
The Window Extractor Fan
The easiest and most simply place to fit your fan is through the bathroom window. It’s a simple process that simply requires you to cut a whole in your window using a glass cutter, and fit your fan to the window.
The problem is that many older homes across the UK have central located bathrooms meaning that they do not have windows in the bathtroom. This leaves you with two choices, either a ducted wall fan or a ceiling bathroom extractor.
Both of these options will require you specialist tools and some building knowledge as you’re going to be cutting into your home.
Ducted Wall Fan - This is where you simply cut a whole through the inside and outside wall of your home. The fan will sit on the bathroom side of the whole, whilst plastic tubing connects the extractor fan to the whole through the outside of your home.
Ceiling Extractor Fan - Very much like the wall fan, with a ceiling fan you simply cut a whole in the ceiling of your bathroom where the fan will sit and a whole either in the roof or outside wall and connect the two together using plastic tubing. It’s worth noting that if you’re planning to use either a wall fan or ceiling fan, you need to make sure that you buying yourself a powerful fan as it will need to overcome the force of cold air down through the tube. I would highly recommend that you at the very least buy a fan with a flow rate of above 30 liters of air per minute.
Bathroom Extractor Fan - Reviews
In this section we have the top five best bathroom extractor fans across the whole maker. We’re looking for the best performing extractor fan, but taking into account both the price and the noise.
If you're looking for the best bathroom extractor fan on the market, then check out the Envirovent Silent below as it is easily the best product of all the fans that we have tested, however its more than twice the price of our recommended fan.
If you're anything like me, you will want to buy a decent fan that is not going to break down, but the thought of having to spend over £50 per fan just puts me off. Maybe its a good idea to buy the Envirovent for your main bathroom and then buy the Manrose for the others to keep the price down, but that's a choice that you need to make. Personally for the slight difference in performance, we can do without a humidity sensor and half the price, I would take the Manrose everytime.
The Manrose QF100T “Quiet” Extractor Fan with Timer
The Manrose QF100T Quiet Extractor Fan is easily the best extractor fan on the market today and comes with a range of features to save you money and ensure performance. Its made from heavy duty ABS plastic that has been designed to last you well into the future.
The key features that we like include an extraction rate of 22 litres per second with a power usage of 4.5 Watts whilst also a selection of built in features to include a back-draught shutter and overrun timer.
Faults are slim, however it does not come with a humidity sensor, and whilst its very quiet to run, it’s does run at the top of our 30db noise sensor reading. The manufacture suggests that you can get it run as low as 27db, however during our test’s we could not get it to run this low. What’s also great, we’re not the only ones who like the QF100T, there are over 500 reviews online of which over 300 are 5-star reviews.
Envirovent Silent 100 HT Extractor Fan Humidistat & Timer
The Envirovent Silent 100 HT Bathroom Extractor Fan comes with very similar features and performance to the Manrose above, however with two key differences. Firstly it comes with a humidity sensor allowing you to set the humidity levels and and the fan will keep those levels under control
Secondly and we think more importantly, it comes with a price tag that is nearly twice that of the Manrose above. If you're specifically looking for an extractor fan with a humidity sensor then the Envirovent Silent is a great model and will do the job.
Personally we’re quite happy with an overrun timer and therefore cannot justify the price tag. The Envirovent comes with decent performance figures using 5.3 Watts at Max power, a recorded noise level of 33db and a maximum extraction rate of 26 Litres per second which basically means its slight more power hungry and better performing than the Manrose above, but with a price tag that is nearly twice the Manrose.
Manrose MF100T In-line Fan Timer Extractor
The third extractor fan review is one that specifically has been designed to be used with wall or ceiling mounts and therefore comes with a much higher power usage, but also a much larger extraction rate of up to 70 Litres per second.
The Manrose MF100T has been designed to overcome even the heaviest of cold air down forces and allows you to run an extra long tubing out the top of your roof if needed. The down side of all this extraction power is that it does use a lot of energy and is actually very loud and during our test's on the highest speed, yes it comes with three different speed settings, the sound reach 75db.
This means that you need to run tubing from your bathroom to the middle of your roof and then tubing to the outside-vent. This way you ensure that the sound is kept away from you and to a minimum. If you build it correctly, there should be little or no sound during operation, however this may require some sound proofing.
Whilst it's pretty easy to fit, the electric cabling can be a nightmare and therefore its a great idea to get help from a professional electrician. Performance figures are great and on the highest air extraction setting we got 75 litres per second with a noise of 72db using 25 Watts, however at the lowest of the three settings watts are reduced to 18w and air extraction reduced to 18 litres per second which is still impressive.
Best Humidity Sensor Extractor Fans for Bathrooms
Above, we have specifically looked at the best extractor fans on the market, however many of the questions we have received over the last year are around the best humidity sensor extractor fans.
Personally I don’t think humidity extractor fans are worth the money either to buy, or to run. The sales pitch is that the fan is only switched on when the humidity reaches a certain level and then is automatically switched off once it decrease. In reality, we found that our extractor fan would often switch itself on during the day especially in the summer when no-one has used the bathroom, and would not switch itself on in the winter when the humidity levels are low.
This could be because they are nothing more than good marketing or it could be because we did not have it set up correctly for the size and humidity levels in the room, however what we did like was the fan not switching on every time we entered the bathroom for a quick toilet break or to wash hands. If you really want the best bathroom extractor fan with a humidity sensor then check out the Envirovent Silent below.
Envirovent Silent 100 HT Fan With Humidity Sensor
As we discussed above, we do like the Envirovent Silent 100 and quite frankly the only reason we didn't give it the top spot was the due to the fact that it comes with a Humidistat and therefore the price increased above levels that we were comfortable with.
In this section we’re looking the best extract fans with a humidistat and therefore the price is expects. We do like the fact that this model comes with both a humidistat and a timer meaning that you can control your extractor fan with both humidity and time. Whilst it is quite expensive, performance of around 27litres per second, 25db of sound and a power usage of 8watts per hour, easily make this extractor the fan our top model.
Best Silent Bathroom Extractor Fan
The one problem with extractor fans whether they work using humidity sensors using a timer is the noise they make. There is nothing worse than listening to a fan swirling around whilst you’re trying to go to sleep because you have just used your bathroom before going to bed.
If this is you, you’re choices are to either place the extractor fan in the attic where the roof insulation will help to drown out the noise or you can buy a bathroom extractor that has been designed to run quietly.
Unfortunately, no fan has been designed to run in complete silence, however with new models and technology being used to design extractor fans, they are becoming much quieter than previously thought possible.
Wherever you decide to place your fan, I would recommend that you choose a design that makes no more than 30db of noise, however if this is going to be in your bathroom next to your bedroom, you noise should be more of a concern than performance.
Vents 100 Silenta Silent Extractor Fan
Of all the models we tested, the Vents 100 Silenta Silent Extractor fan was firmly the quietest model from across the market. In terms of pure sound, according to the manufactures sales pitch, you make this fan produce less than 26 db of noise whilst running it flat out from 3 meters away. Whilst we could not get it this low, with the bathroom door closed, we could not hear a thing.
Above we looked at the different types of extractor fans that are available to you, however in this section we’re looking at the different features that you can find on the many different types of extractor fans on the market. Remember, the best extractor fan does not have every feature below as some are more important than others and depending on your situation you will not need them.
Overrun Time - This is an important feature if you’re anything like me and forget to switch things off. An overrun timer will allow the fan to run for a set period of time, then switch itself off. This means that you can shower, switch off the light in your bathroom, the fan will continue drawing out the moisture rich air for a set period of time whilst you’re not in room.
Back-Draught Shutter - This is another very important feature that you should be looking out for especially if you live in the UK where it’s cold in the winter and are using a wall or ceiling fan. The biggest problem with ceiling fans is that if you don’t have a shutter, there is effectively a whole in your roof that will be continually letting in cold air. The shutter closes off the airflow when the fan is not being used and stops the cold air running back down the tube into your home.
Sound - This is an important feature if you’re buying the extractor fan for your bedroom or a bathroom next to your bedroom. The last thing you want is to take a shower, go to bed and then listen to your extractor fan whistling away for 30 minutes whilst you’re trying to get to sleep. I would highly recommend that you look out for fans that operate at less than 30db as these tend to stop the sound penetrating through your walls.
Power Usage - This is a more difficult feature to choose from. Ideally you want the lowest power usage extractor fan as possible as this will be the cheapest to run, however low power usage and poor performance go together. It’s much cheaper to buy a power unit that cost twice as much to run, but works as twice the power and therefore requires less time in use than buying a cheap to run fan, that you have to run for hours to draw out the moisture.
Extraction Rate - As we mentioned above, extraction rate and power usage go together, however as a minimum, i would aim for an air flow rate of at least 20 cubic feet per minute.
Humidity Sensor’s - These allow your fan to turn itself on-and-off as per the humidity in the room. Rather than using a timer, humidity sensors, sense how humid the room is and therefore how long they need to extract air for. You might think this is a gadget that you do not need, however test’s have shown that this bit of technology can save you money in the long run.
Price - This is important, not everyone wants to go out and spend hundreds of pounds buying the latest and greatest, brand named extractor fan. That all said, choose carefully, extractor fans are easy to make, there are a lot of cheap fans on the market that might look like a great deal, but if you’re buying two because the first one broke down, not only is it a pain to replace, but can get quite expensive.
Any questions, we’re here to answer, however one point, as with any electrical installation, i would highly recommend that you fit you extractor fan by a qualified electrician