Are you planning to install a radon fan in your home, and do you want to know how to properly wire it? You’ve come to the right place, for we have researched this question and have the answer for you.
Wiring a radon fan is simple. You just need to note the wires' colors because some brands have different colored wires. Follow the summarized steps below to wire your radon fan:
- Open the radon fan wire housing.
- Connect the power supply wire inside the wire housing.
- Close the power supply housing.
Learn about the complete steps in the succeeding sections. We also included some useful information about radon that you might be interested in. Read on!
What is radon gas?
Before we talk about the complete steps to wiring a radon fan, let’s look briefly at what radon is.
Radon gas comes from the bedrock underground. It is harmless in the open air because the air can easily dilute radon gas and make it harmless. However, radon gas becomes a problem when it accumulates inside houses and buildings.
Radon gas is a radioactive gas that is colorless, odorless, and tasteless. Prolonged exposure to it causes an increase in the risk of lung cancer. In fact, it is the second leading cause of lung cancer—second only to smoking. If you don’t smoke, then radon gas is the biggest risk of you getting lung cancer.
A radon fan sucks the radon gas from the ground through a pipe. It then sends the gas outdoors, where the air will render it harmless.
How to wire a radon fan?
Now that we know more about radon gas and the health risks that it brings, let’s proceed to the complete steps on how to wire a radon fan.
Preparing To Wire Your Radon Fan
- Open the box of your radon fan and take out the main fan assembly. Set it on a well-lit, level surface. Set aside the bag of screws and wires.
- Open the wire housing on one side of the radon fan. The wire housing on some radon fan models requires that you remove the screws that keep the housing cover in place. Some models have clip-on wire housing covers that you can simply pry open.
- Some models have a potentiometer that you can set to change the speed of your radon fan.
Securing The Power Supply Wire
- Take the bag of wire and take out the thick wire that connects your radon fan to the wall socket and the bushings that will fasten the wire to the wire housing.
- Get the opposite end of the power supply wire—not the end that you plug into the wall socket—and trim the tips off to get it ready to be installed into the radon fan. Expose at least half an inch of wire on all three wires on that end.
- Twist the wires together.
- Insert the wire into the bushing or grommet. The screw end of the grommet should be pointing towards the end of the wire that you trimmed.
- Insert the wire into the wiring hole on the fan housing. This will bring the wire inside the wire housing.
- Insert the wire into the nut that will keep the grommet or bushing in place.
- Tighten the nut to keep the grommet in place. You might need to use a pair of pliers to tighten the nut to the grommet. Just take note of the material of the grommet or bushing. Most radon fan models use plastic for the grommet or bushing. So, be careful not to overtighten the nut, or you might strip the grommet or crack the nut. Just make sure that the nut is snug.
Connecting The Power Supply Wire
Take the wire terminal inside the wire housing. This is a piece of plastic with six or seven wires coming from one end. It has several connectors on top that make it look like a Lego block. Position the wire terminal in front of you so that the wires coming out of it will be pointing away from you. The opposite edge that doesn’t have wires should be facing you.
If the radon fan model that you have does not have a wire terminal, simply connect the wires inside to the wires that you stripped. In most cases, if the radon fan does not have a wire terminal, the colors of the wires will match. Two of the three wires that you trimmed earlier will be colored black and the other white. The third wire can vary in color.
Now, look at the wires on the wire terminal that you’re holding. The second wire from the left is black. Connect the black wire from the power supply wire to the port that is opposite the black wire. Insert the black wire into the small hole on the opposite port and screw the black wire in place.
The black wire should now stick out on the opposite side of the wire terminal where the other black wire is sticking out. If your radon fan model uses a different color coding for the wires, always look for the wire that has a black stripe or a gray color and connect that wire to the port that is second from the left and facing you. Just make sure that you are holding the wire terminal the correct way.
Take the white wire from the power supply wiring and connect it to the leftmost port opposite the last wire on the left. This wire on the wire terminal can be blue or white. Insert the white wire into the port and tighten the screw to keep the white wire in place.
Take the third and last wire from the power supply wire and connect it to the port that is third from the left of the wire terminal. This port is to the right of the black wire that you connected earlier. Insert the third wire into the port and tighten the screw to keep the wire in place.
Securing The Wire Terminal
- Connect the wire terminal to the wire housing. Some models have a hole on their wire terminal where a matching prong inside the housing will slide inside the hole. Some models require you to screw the wire terminal into the wire housing to keep it in place.
- Once the wire terminal is in place, tighten the grommet to make it grip the power supply wire. This will prevent the power supply wire from pulling the wire terminal connections and getting the connections loose in case someone accidentally pulls the power supply wire or trips on it.
- Test the power supply wire by trying to pull it in and out. Adjust the nut in the grommet to tighten the grip on the wire.
- Reinstall the cover for the wire housing.
- Test the radon fan by plugging it into a wall socket. Keep in mind that most models do not have a power switch. The radon fan will turn on automatically once you plug it in. Be careful where you hold it, and make sure that your hands are not caught in the fan blades.
Do radon fans need to be hardwired?
Home inspectors require that radon fans are hardwired to an external electrical circuit. They will also check the condition of the surrounding area of the plug and switch and whether there are hazardous conditions surrounding them.
Can I install a radon fan myself?
You can install your own radon fan. You can save around two-thirds of the cost that you need to pay to install it professionally.
However, you need to keep in mind that your radon fan installation will be inspected by a home inspector. Any mistake in the installation, and you might end up redoing most of what you did. Redoing an installation might cause you to spend a lot more on materials than what you would have paid for a professional installation.
Additionally, a professional installation can ensure that radon gas mitigation for your home really does drop the amount of radon gas to safe levels. If you’re willing to take these risks and are handy with tools, then you can install them yourself.
Should radon fan be on GFCI?
No, radon fans should not be on GFCI.
A GFCI or a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter monitors the flow of electrical energy on a circuit. If there is a change in the current that is greater than five milliamps, the GFCI will terminate the flow of electrical energy on that circuit.
A radon fan should not be on GFCI because a cold snap can generate condensation inside the radon piping and inside the radon fan. The condensation can trip the GFCI and stop the flow of electricity to your radon fan. This will interrupt the job that your radon fan is doing.
Wiring a radon fan can be tricky because different manufacturers and models might use different color codes for the wires.
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