The most important job for a ventilation fan, particularly in a well-sealed home, is to exhaust the excess moisture from the air. Moisture needs to be kept from building up indoors to keep the interior environment comfortable. To help with this, Panasonic is introducing a new series of WhisperSense fans with dual sensors which will be available starting in June 2011.
These are the only vent fans on the market with dual motion and humidity sensors, according to Panasonic, and enable the fan to work more intelligently and effectively by running only when needed.
Simple switched fans work while the space is occupied, but then do nothing for residual moisture after the fan is switched off. The alternative to leave the fan on after leaving the room is a workable but inelegant option, and is subject to forgetting that the fan is still running.
Panasonic’s new fans use both motion and humidity sensors to ventilate the space only as much as is needed. Motion sensors identify when the room is occupied, and set a delay timer to run the fan for a set period after the occupant has left. If there is more than normal humidity in the room, as when the occupant has taken a shower or a bath, then the moisture sensor overrides the timer and continues to run the fan until the humidity reaches a preset level (from 30-90% relative humidity).
In addition to providing more intelligent operation of the fan, the WhisperSense fans are exceptionally quiet, as low as 0.3 sones. They’re also designed to be easily adaptable for retrofit installations, and can be connected to either 4″ or 6″ diameter exhaust ducts without an additional adapter. Some models of the new fan also incorporate energy-saving CFL lights.
The company also states that the ceiling-mounted model WhisperSense fans were “designed specifically to meet the requirements of ASHRAE Standard 62.2, LEED for Homes, and the new CalGreen standard.”
Image credit: Panasonic.