Bathroom exhaust fan broken

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Jul 22, 2005
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So you ask what is the big deal? Replace it!

Here is the big deal! It is about 20 feet high from the floor! And I am scared of heights. I would see what can be done from the attic but will need to wait until Fall season to even think about going there! Looking from bottom, it does look like it needs to be accessed from the tall ladder because replacing the fan would NOT be possible from the attic but that is just my guess. This is fan only until. Having replaced the fan units in other (accessible) bathrooms, I know that the fan unit comes out from the bottom but do not remember if it can also come out from the top or something blocks it.

If you guys can identify this exhaust fan unit by the photos, I will order the fan and then have somebody come in and do the replacement in single visit if it comes to that.
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I’d call a local electrician or handyman and get a cost to replace the fan. If you have someone install a fan you bought generally they won’t warranty the work. If they supply the fan and install it then there’s a better chance of them dealing with it if there’s a problem.

Just my $0.02
 
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the cover has to come out from the outside . the fan motor and housing itself can be done either way depending if there is good access to that space
 
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Twenty feet is a tall ceiling, especially for a bathroom. If you have a iPhone you can measure it to get the real height.
 
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All (3) bathrooms in our house had the same Braun exhaust fan and Braun makes a retrofit "kit" for it. It pulls a little bit more air than originally and is quieter too. You remove the plastic faceplate, unplug the fan motor, and lightly "pry" out the fan, motor, and sub-housing. You leave the main housing installed, attached to the vent hose, etc and the replacement hooks, clicks, and plugs back in. See if that option is available for yours..... You have to get up there to determine this though unless, by chance, other bathrooms use the same fan and is more accessible.
 
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Pretty much any way you go, some of the work has to be done on the bathroom side, not the attic side. The attachment hardware all is typically on the bathroom side, and to get the cover on and off has to be done on the bathroom side.

I've replaced all three braun bathroom fans in our house (contractor originals) with Panasonics. No complaints on the Panasonics at all. The Timer switch we installed was slightly complicated by the minimal power these things draw on startup, but getting the correct timer switch fixed the issues. All of these were retrofits and all done from the bathroom side.

We tried the retrofits with minimal reductions in noise, etc... Not worth the effort in our opinion unless you are trying to do a minimal repair of a dead motor which may apply here. And that has to be done on the Bathroom side as well...
 
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Vancouver Island
Looks like it certainly needs a good clean. I might start by getting somebody to get up there somehow and remove the cover and unplug and remove the fan/motor assembly (this is often a single screw)
I have found that often the motors are an open design and can be returned to good working order ofter just a good clean and lube.
But you might just want to replace it. Note the serial #, chances are you can find an equivalent motor on Amazon for little money.

Replacing the whole fan could be quite a bit more involved, and somebody would still have to get up a ladder anyway.
 
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Tip for all: Remove the grill and clean the blower wheel and grill with compressed air at least once per year.

From an air compressor, not a can.

My first home has a small main bathroom with a Broan fan that was in the house when I bought it. I fired up my air compressor, cleaned the grill outside, dragged the air hose inside and cleaned the blower wheel. It always worked better after a cleaning. You could feel the tiny bit of more vacuum when softly closing the bathroom door.

The fan started making noise years ago. The blower motor developed a tiny bit of play, lowing the fan down with gravity a millimeter or two that caused it to rub against the metal cover under it. The metal cover is held in by screws and I grinded a little metal away which fixed it.
 
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Tip for all: Remove the grill and clean the blower wheel and grill with compressed air at least once per year.

From an air compressor, not a can.

My first home has a small main bathroom with a Broan fan that was in the house when I bought it. I fired up my air compressor, cleaned the grill outside, dragged the air hose inside and cleaned the blower wheel. It always worked better after a cleaning. You could feel the tiny bit of more vacuum when softly closing the bathroom door.

The fan started making noise years ago. The blower motor developed a tiny bit of play, lowing the fan down with gravity a millimeter or two that caused it to rub against the metal cover under it. The metal cover is held in by screws and I grinded a little metal away which fixed it.

Just make sure you dont blow the exhaust hose off the housing.. ask me how I know :LOL:
 
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TX, USA
Panasonic fan with ez-fit should be very easy to use as replacement.
The installer needs to cut a bigger hole.
If the duct is only 3" dia, then it needs an adapter.
Some Panasonic fan comes with adapter.
Installation can be done from the bottom.
In your case, needs a tall ladder or higher a professional.

Another good brand is Revent. It is slightly cheaper than Panasonic especially if you want the one with LED light.
I have installed both Panasonic and Revent in current house, also AIrking in my previous house as DIY or have installer do it.
 
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Bad bathroom fans are a common cause of house fires. Make sure to disconnect it, regardless of your plans to replace it.
 

Vikas

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Motor started making weird noise and in a day or two it became worse and now it is fully jammed. It is either Nutone or Braun (may be they are same now?) The other bathrooms have fan+light combo, so this one is little different. The cathedral ceiling is about 16 feet but still higher than my limit to monkey around from the bathroom side.
 
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That used to be a pretty standard design you could find at Home Depot, but like everything after a few years they stop carrying it. Pretty much any replacement fan should fit. The key is to get one the same size or bigger, smaller will leave gaps where the hole is.

 
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