Short Answer:
  • Basic Summary: This blog guides you through identifying and fixing ventilation issues in your bathroom, focusing on a common venting mistake.
  • The One Lesson: Proper bathroom ventilation is key to preventing dampness and maintaining a healthy environment.
  • My Expertise: I share firsthand experience battling dampness, uncovering a builder error, and successfully implementing a solution.
  • Benefit to Reader: Readers gain knowledge to troubleshoot bathroom dampness, avoiding costly problems and improving their home’s health.
Full Article:

Banish bathroom dampness forever! I discovered a common builder’s blunder – my extractor fan vented into the loft. But I fixed it, and I’ll show you how. Learn from my experience, get expert advice, and transform your bathroom with proper ventilation. Say goodbye to damp ceilings and enjoy a fresher, healthier space.

I discovered the classic lazy builder mess-up – an extractor vented straight into the loft … so lazy! Here’s how to fix a loft-vented extractor fan.

Introduction: I thought the gathering dampness in our bathroom ceiling was due to our two kids, who seem to think 30 minutes in the shower and an atmosphere like the tropical house at Kew is perfectly normal. I looked up, and there it was – my bathroom ceiling slowly gathering moisture. 

Dampness coming through the plasterboard - how to ix a loft-vented extractor fan

The culprit? I thought I needed a more powerful fan, but as it turns out when I installed it, the lazy builders of my house had committed a colossal blunder by venting it straight into the loft void. In this blog post, I’ll take you on my journey from dampness to dryness, sharing how I devised a solution to install a better extractor fan in the loft space and vent it properly outside. The result? A much quieter fan and the end of my perpetual damp bathroom ceiling woes. Here’s how to fix a loft-vented extractor fan.

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Bathroom extractor fan repair (a moisture-fighting hero)

Before diving into the specifics of my story, let’s establish why repairing a faulty bathroom extractor fan is essential. These humble devices play a pivotal role in preventing moisture problems, making them unsung heroes of any bathroom. A malfunctioning fan can lead to all sorts of issues, including the dreaded dampness.

Identifying the issue

Discovering a damp bathroom ceiling was a clear sign that something was amiss with my extractor fan. This chapter delves into how I identified the issue and recognized the importance of addressing it promptly before things got even damper.

A more powerful extractor fan

My initial assumption was that a more powerful extractor fan was the answer to my moisture problems. 

Poor ventilation design (the lazy loft void blunder)

To my dismay, I discovered that the builders of my house had made a colossal ventilation blunder by venting the fan straight into the loft void. This meant moisture was going straight into the loft space and condensing on the cold felt underlay. Then running back down into the bathroom ceiling. Apparently, this is one of the top snags for new builds and causes huge amounts of damage if not fixed 

The Solution

Here’s where the real action begins. I devised a plan to install a larger extractor fan in the loft space and vent it properly to the outside. 

Installing a tile vent on our high roof proved to be impractical and expensive and I didn’t really want to go messing about with cutting into the roof felt or removing tiles. 

An alternative ventilation path

The alternative ventilation path I picked, involved 4 metres of rectangular Flat Ducting between the rafters and down to a vent installed through the eaves.

This proved to be a crucial part of the solution, allowing for efficient moisture removal.

Vent in the eaves, fix a loft-vented extractor fan

These are easy to connect to flexible round tubing with a rectangular to round spigot:

Quieter extractor fan operation

One unexpected perk of my new installation was the much quieter operation of the extractor fan. Having it hidden away in the loft means even a much more powerful fan is far quieter. I bought a Devola MF100T Mixed Flow in-Line Extractor Fan with a Timer (for use with 100mm / 4 Inch Ducting).  It’s basically the same as a more expensive Manrose MF100T (in fact the fan in the box is branded Manrose ..bargain!). Here’s a link for you:

Eliminating dampness (the happy ending)

The ultimate test of any home improvement project is whether it effectively solves the problem. I’m pleased to report that my revamped bathroom ventilation system put an end to the dampness issues, creating a more comfortable and hygienic environment. I just need to leave it a while for the dampness to dry out and do some running repairs and a bit of decorating. And the kids can recreate the tropical house at Kew – without ruining the ceiling.

The Importance of Bathroom Ventilation. In conclusion, my journey to fix a loft-vented extractor fan taught me invaluable lessons about proper ventilation. It’s not just about comfort; it’s about maintaining a healthy living environment. And means the kid’s bathroom is the lovely space we designed. By sharing my experience, I hope you’ve gained insights into addressing similar issues in your home.