Installing radon fans is a popular way to control and prevent increasing radon levels in your home, but it could not be evident for starters. So, you might be wondering, are they supposed to be loud, and how can you reduce the noise? We've looked these up and summed up the answers in this post.
Unlike most fans, a radon fan comes with a pipe that pulls radon gas from beneath your home and vents it outside. It generates noise during operation due to ventilation and vibration.
These methods could help to reduce the noise:
- Install a smaller pipe size for quieter airflow noise.
- Add rubber couplings to minimize the vibration.
- Wrap insulation tubes onto the pipe.
- Clean the blades to keep the fan balanced.
Other sounds, like whirring or crunching, may imply that your fan needs repairing or requires a replacement.
Radon fans usually stay on all the time, so the noise could bother you if you're new to it. Keep reading as we delve into radon fan noises and learn what to do about them.
Should A Radon Fan Be Loud?
Usually, a radon fan makes noise when it runs due to the process of pulling and releasing the gas from under your home. The sound closely resembles a low humming sound but may be louder depending on the size of your system and where you install it.
In some cases, the hums are louder depending on the structure of your system. During operation, your radon fan vibrates the pipe as it pulls air through it, adding to the operational sounds of the system.
The loudness of your radon fan's operation may also vary on where you install it. If it's close to the indoors, it's more likely for you to hear it while it runs.
Read this post to know where to install a radon fan: Can A Radon Fan Be Inside My Home?
However, when the noises from your radon fan seem unusually louder, there could be an issue with its components that may require repair or replacement. Be sure to thoroughly examine your radon fan before marking it as damaged or have a professional inspect it.
Can I Soundproof A Noisy Radon Fan?
Radon fans are bound to be loud when it runs, so there's no exact way to eliminate the sound. But, even if you can't fully soundproof a radon fan, there are ways you can reduce the noise it produces.
You can try doing this with the following methods.
One of the primary reasons for operational noise in a radon fan is the size of the system. The bigger they are, the more sound they are likely to produce. If you own a smaller home or want to install the radon fan indoors, consider getting a smaller pipe size.
Note that the installation should be done by a professional. And so, you should consult a company or professional to see how small you can have the pipe, depending on your circumstances and needs, or to replace the existing system pipe.
Some manufacturers offer additions that help with sound reduction in these systems. You can ask your manufacturer if they have any available before proceeding with the installation.
Amount Of Vibration
You can minimize pipe vibration sounds by changing the type of pipe or using rubber couplings on the clasps, allowing it to shift back to the building. Instead of installing two rubber couplings, make it four.
Wrapping each fastener supporting the exhaust with rubber also significantly reduces the vibration transfer.
If the noise comes from the fan touching other parts of your home, consider loosening or removing the clamps holding down the pipe. If the supports seem necessary, add foam or cushion-like material between the bracket and the tube.
One of the benefits of using insulation is its soundproofing properties, specifically from options including cellulose, fiberglass, and foam materials. You can install it to your radon fan if the loud sounds come from the system's basic operation rather than its components.
This video explains a quick DIY solution to quieting a noisy radon fan with insulation.
Here's a brief of what you should do.
- Purchase insulation tubes the same size as your radon fan pipe. If you can't find the exact size, consider getting a smaller size or any foam insulation wrap.
- Cut the insulation accordingly to fit your pipe.
- Attach tape, or stick them around the pipe, ensuring you don't cover the top.
Radon Fan Cleaning
Another way to reduce noise is by cleaning the fan blades. It keeps it balanced, making it unlikely for additional vibration to occur within the fan.
Note that cleaning won't make as significant changes as if you adjusted the components or wrapped them with rubber or insulation. It's also vital to note that only a licensed professional should clean the fan for you.
If the sound continues to bother you even after these remedies, you can make do with purchasing an even quieter model before applying these tips. That way, it won't make as much noise within your home, especially when you install it outside.
Is A Noisy Radon Fan Damaged?
Although it's normal for a radon fan to make noise, the sound may indicate damage within your system. Generally, a radon fan can last five years or more before it shows visible wear, but it may vary on use.
Here are a few noises you may encounter from your radon fan other than its usual operational humming.
Unusually louder operation is a sign your fan's components are wearing out. And so, you might have to replace it soon before it stops working completely.
If you're unsure about the loudness, use a manometer to check the current reading, then compare it to the reading on the info sticker on the pipe. If the current reading is lower, the fan is moving less air, which means it's losing efficiency.
When your radon fan operates, the motor constantly spins, causing it to be unbalanced and worn out in the long run. Once the ball bearings in the motor become loose or displaced, it could produce a loud, grinding sound.
You can have this repaired, but this problem may become frequent for older radon fans. If so, it would be better to start looking for a replacement with improved motors.
When water levels get too high, you might hear gurgling noises from the radon pipe. It's essential to check the sump pump to ensure everything is in working order or contact a professional to diagnose the noise.
Water Or Ice Sloshing
You may also hear water or ice around the fan, but it's not much of a concern. During cold spells, condensation forms above the fan and runs back down into the fan when it freezes. Contact a professional to inspect your system if it bothers you or doesn't seem to disappear.
Read this post to learn more about how to deal with sounds from your radon fan: Radon Fan Making High Pitched Noise – Why And What To Do?
Radon Fan Repair And Replacement Cost
You can expect to pay around $150 to $400 to get your radon fan repaired or replaced by a professional. You can contact the same people who installed your radon system to work on this.
While it may be tempting to work on a DIY project to save on costs, hiring a professional is best to ensure it functions correctly.
If you're interested in DIY for your radon fan, it would be better to try it during installation rather than on an already-installed system.
Do I Need To Run My Radon Fan Continuously?
Yes, you do! Running your radon fan non-stop is essential to remove radon gas from underneath your home. Turning off a radon fan, even if only for a few hours, makes room for radon levels to rise, posing a risk to your family and home.
Fortunately, radon fans typically run continuously, making them less likely to break down. However, you might have to check on it once in a while to ensure it continues working efficiently.
Testing the radon levels in your home is also one way to determine whether or not the system is still working in top condition or if it's starting to deteriorate.
To Wrap Up
Radon fans generate noise during their usual operation, which can disturb some homeowners. You can reduce the sounds produced by adjusting its components wherever necessary. Changes can include pipe sizing, vibration reduction, or adding simple remedies, like insulation or cleaning.
Other noises besides a low humming sound indicate a problem with your radon fan. And so, you should contact a professional to examine it and determine if it should be repaired or replaced.