How To Vent A Bathroom With No Outside Access

Ultimate Guide On How To Vent A Bathroom With No Outside Access

Many people wish to upgrade their house for its better aesthetic look, adding to its luxurious touch and enhancing the real estate value. Unfortunately, this makes them invest a considerable portion of their income in renovating their house. The same is the case for the bathroom. It is considered part of a house that needs to be upgraded and furnished with different systems to have a much better experience.


Here in this article, we are going to elaborate on venting a bathroom without any external excess. If you have been searching for the same topic, your search is over now. We are committed to providing a complete and informative guide to cover every possible aspect of it. Consider reading it all; let’s break it together!


Bathroom Ventilation And Building Code


  • Introduction


If we talk about the bathrooms, they are smelly and wet places that are unventilated and closed-in in many cases. And smells in the bathroom is one of the most annoying things a person can experience. To add more, moisture is a real problem as it can create hazardous mildew and mold. They can eat away at your bathroom’s ceiling, walls, and trim. Only some exhaust venting systems can save bathrooms from a lot of harm.


To make it easy for homeowners to conveniently address the issue of moving moisture and odor-laden air from the bathroom to the outside. Surprisingly, some bathroom codes do not require bathroom fans. This is because all municipalities have their own sets of rules and instructions. For instance, some do not draw a hard line on having exhaust fans, but some do. In such areas, proper ventilation of the bathroom is the only condition. And it can be via a window or a ventilation fan, depending on your interests, choice, and personal preferences.


  • Common Indicators That Your Bathroom Needs To Be Ventilated More


Mildew, mold, moisture, and pollution are things no one can expect to have in their house, especially in their bathroom. Because of the poor ventilation system, the air quality inside the toilet is worse than that outside. Besides the harmful mildew and mold in the house, poor ventilation can also harm bathroom walls, floors, and various other structures. It can also put the floors at risk of collapsing and toilets at the risk of leaking.


While talking about the best ways of knowing the proper ventilation of the bathroom, various signs can be observed. Some of them are mentioned below:


  • Excess Moisture: If you notice more excessive moisture in your bathroom than average, it indicates poor ventilation that can cause severe damage. This is a clear sign of thinking of some steps of venting the bathroom.


  • Stuffiness: You must check any of the cooling or heating vents to confirm that they are properly closed or not. Anything that can block dry air from entering your bathroom leads to various condensation issues. Just consider opening bathroom windows if you find your bathroom too much humid.


  • Mold: If you have a damp bathroom, molds and mildews are likely. Not only do they seriously impact your health, but they can also ruin your bathroom’s beauty. Talking about human health issues can cause respiratory infections, asthma, respiratory problems, or Besides that, it can also affect the immune system.


  • Stained CeilingStains of the ceiling, in most cases, are considered as an indication of the by-product of heating appliances, roofs, or plumbing leaks. They tend to seep through the ceiling and are evaporated, leaving an unsightly patch of discolored and dried mineral deposits. This is an alert to paying attention to taking steps for renovation or installation of a venting system in the bathroom.


  • Smells That Stay: If we talk about the smell of a bathroom, it is not a new thing to think of. But, if you notice a smell that persists for an extended period, you must consider measures to prevent it. Otherwise, the issue can cause severe problems in your bathroom.


Picking the Right Vent Fan


To eliminate all of the issues mentioned above in your bathroom, you must pick up the right side of the vent fan. A vent fan will help in good ventilation of the toilet. That is why one must pay some attention to choosing an appropriate vent fan as per the bathroom requirement depending upon its size.


How do you vent a bathroom when you don’t have access to the outside?


If you want to vent a bathroom that does not have access to the outside, installing a ceiling vent would be the best option to go with. It is considered the most efficient method to ventilate a bathroom. To put it in simple words, a ceiling vent is an innovative machine that permits air to escape out of the bathroom. Besides that, it is an open window-like machine allowing moisture to get out of the bathroom.


Installing a ceiling vent in the bathroom will ensure that it does not remain moist or humid. If, as a homeowner, you cannot install it yourself, you must consult with some professional for this purpose. Not only can a ceiling vent help people, but there are various other options that one can choose. Later in this article, we are going to elaborate on that too. Just continue reading this piece of writing.


Tips on How To Vent A Bathroom

 With No Outside Access


If we talk about the wettest room of your home, it is your bathroom. But unfortunately, toilets that flush, steamy showers, sinks that run, and occasional drips can add much to the moisture. And such conditions can lead to mildew, mold, and various unpleasant issues. That is why every bathroom requires a proper ventilation system to get free of any misshaping.


To add more, it is needed by code in most places for building contractors to ensure adequate bathroom ventilation. If you are looking forward to the details of venting your bathroom, you can follow the following tips and tricks to get the best outcomes.


Use of a ceiling vent


To begin with, a ceiling vent is one of the most widely used ones that helps homeowners protect their bathrooms from various damages. However, if we talk about its benefits, the best thing is that it allows you to keep the attic cooler during high-temperature months. To add more, increasing the airflow and lowering the temperature via the ceiling vent helps prevent mold, damage, rot, and various other repairs homeowners may face having an unventilated ceiling.


Using a floor duct vent


For both cooling and heating systems, floor duct vents offer many advantages over their overhead counterparts. They can be customized per your requirements and the size of your bathroom. Like various other types, they help a lot in venting your bathroom to prevent the growth of mildew, mold, and various other harms and damages you may face if neglected.


Using extra ducts


If you live in an area where summers are sweltering, moist, and humid, you must face the problem of more severe conditions and bathroom damage. If you wish to prevent that, you must need appropriate taking steps. To make the bathroom experience good, people may go for additional options to make a huge difference. For example, some consider installing extra ducts to meet the demands of their bathroom size and lowering the high temperature.


Vent Through The Joist


Yes! It is possible to vent through the joist. But, one must remember that it depends on how joists go. As per the way your joists go, you can run the duct through the bathroom ceiling to the outside wall. It is another kind of ventilation that many people choose to enjoy all the benefits of vents in a bathroom to protect it from various hazards.

Using The Right Bath Fan


Considering the size and temperature of the bathroom, it is necessary to install an appropriate size vent fan in the bathroom to get the expected outcomes. To add more, the rating of bathroom vent fans is done for the amount of air they can move. This is measured in cubic feet per minute. So if we talk about the standard size of vent fan, it would be sufficient for 100 square feet or less.


If you wish to determine the proper square footage of your bathroom to install a right-sized vent fan, you can multiply the length by width. It can help you select the most appropriate one for your bathroom to meet all your needs.


Picking the Right Vent Fan


Who says renovation and up-gradation of a house or its parts are easy? On the contrary, it is a diverse and disruptive process that needs a lot of things to be intensely focused on. Otherwise, minor errors can lead to massive damage to the structures. For example, if a homeowner is planning to renovate a bathroom for proper ventilation, he must be cautious enough to make a wise selection of the right vent fan. So before making a final decision, one must be paying focus on the below-mentioned aspects:


  • Vent Fan Size Ratings
  • Vent Fan Sound Ratings
  • Vent Fan Type
  • Vent Fan Speed


Vent Fan Size Ratings


So, if you have finally decided to install a vent fan for your bathroom, you must consider choosing the right size to meet your requirements. That is why the rule of thumb is that you must have about 1 CFM per square foot of the room area. Then, multiply the length times the width of your bathroom to measure the area of the toilet in square footage. It is necessary to have a right-sized fan; otherwise, your money can go all in vain if it can not give you the expected outcomes.


Vent Fan Sound Ratings


We all know that a fan produces some sound whenever a fan runs. It is another aspect to be focused on because if the sound is so high, it can be highly annoying. Also, it can destroy the overall experience and luxury of your bathroom. If we talk about the noise a vent fan produces, it is measured in sones. A fan is quieter if it has a lower sone. To give you an idea of this unit, the supply fans or exhausts installed for continuous must have a sone rating of about 1.0 sones or even less than that. To make a comparison, a refrigerator operates at only around 1.0 sones.


Vent Fan Type


To cover a wide range of customers and requirements, manufacturers have come up with various vent fans. The most important types include:


  • Axial Fans: They look like propellers and draw air through the fan.
  • Centrifugal fans: They look like “squirrel cages” and draw air into the fan and exhaust it at an angle of  90-degree.


Axial or propeller fans


There are three types of axial fans:


  • Propeller
  • Tubeaxial
  • Vaneaxial


Propeller fans are mainly used for cooling or dilution ventilation. They are often mounted on the ceiling or wall. Vaneaxial and Tubeaxial fans are propeller fans customized to fit into a duct. But, unlike others, they are limited to only cleaner air applications like that of exhaust ducts running through the roof.


Centrifugal fans


There are three main types of centrifugal fans based on the type of fan blades:


  • Forward inclined blades,
  • Backward inclined blades
  • Straight radial blades.


The vacuum cleaner, home furnace, and hairdryer fans are the best example of centrifugal fans. Such fans are manufactured to operate against high resistance and are generally used in local exhaust ventilation systems. If we talk about the rugged radial blade centrifugal fans, they are considered the best options to exhaust heavy dust. To add more, they are less likely to become irritated or clogged by a hefty amount of dust.


Vent Fan Speed


Besides the right size, sound, and type of the vent fan, another factor that can never be neglected when choosing a suitable vent fan is its speed. The fan’s speed is the parameter that can describe the performance of a vent fan. So, to get the right speed per your bathroom space requirements, it is necessary to consult some professionals for excellent advice. This is so because a fan with a slower speed will not meet your needs and will not be efficient enough to drain the hot air out of the bathroom. Also, it will fail to get fresh air into your bathroom.


Installation of the Vent Fan


Must follow the instructions that come with your fan. Below are typical steps for an exhaust fan installation without any external excess if you have access to the attic. These steps include:


  1. Adjust your ceiling hole
  2. Patch the ceiling of your bathroom
  3. Attach duct connector
  4. Attach housing brackets
  5. Prepare to connect the wiring
  6. Connect the house wires
  7. Replace the wires
  8. Establish duct connections
  9. Test you fan


Reducing Noise of a Vent Fan


If you feel irritated with the noise, you can follow the following tips to reduce vent noise:


  • You can attach an air duct noise silencers to your ventilation
  • Ensure the ventilation system is placed in a proper manner
  • Select the appropriate ducts for your ventilation system
  • Make use of the mode switch for your ventilation system
  • Go for demand-controlled ventilation.
  • Properly maintain and clean your ventilation system
  • Check if it is time to replace your ventilation system


Ensuring Proper Ventilation When Using a Vent Fan


Installing a proper ventilation system is not the end of the story; you need to keep on checking if the vent fan is properly venting your bathroom or not. To do so: you have to read what we have mentioned below:


Let the Fan Run After a Shower/Bath


If you want an excellent ventilation process, you must keep the vent fan running after the shower. But, on hot sunny days, replacing the lousy quality air out of the bathroom may take longer and filling it with fresh air. And it may also take longer to normalize the temperature.


Clean the Ventilating Fan


During their duties, vent fans may get clogged by the heavy masses of dust they deal with every day. In such cases, proper cleaning of these fans becomes essential. It takes the following steps to clean a ventilating fan:


Step 1: Shut Off the Electrical Circuit


Whenever you are going to clean any electrical appliance or a system that is powered by electricity, the very first step you should take is shutting off the power circuits. It can make the process entirely safe. In the case of cleaning vent fans, the same thing should be followed in the very first step.


Step 2: Remove the cover


In the next step, you need to expose the surface you will clean. So, in the case of a vent fan, remove the cover to start cleaning the fan.


Step 3: Clean the Fans


Now, you are going to do the primary step, start cleaning your vent fans. But, again, you can use different products that you think can go better with your fans.


Step 4: Turn on the Electricity


After completing the cleaning process, please turn on the electricity to get power back to the fan for its functioning. And, boom, you are good to go with your cleaned vent fan now…


Keep the Bathroom Dry


Try keeping your bathroom dry because a moist and humid bathroom provides the growth medium for molds that can deteriorate the structures, including walls, windows, and ceilings as well.


Bathroom Ventilation Cost


As the pricing highly fluctuates from area to area, you must check in your area to have an exact estimate of how much you are going to pay for your ventilation system. On assessment, replacing an old ventilation system can cost up to $150 to $550. On the other hand, a new bathroom fan costs about $250 to $950 to vent the fan via wall or roof.


Related Questions


  1. Can you vent the bathroom with a dryer?


No! You can not. It is considered unsanitary and is against building codes. Also, it will not function properly and poses a fire safety risk.


  1. How long do bathroom ceiling fans last?


It is estimated that bathroom ceiling fans can last up to 10 years. After that period, if you wish to have good ventilation in your bathroom, you must consider replacing the vent ceiling fan with a new one.


  1. What size ventilation fan do I need for a bathroom?


You need to measure the square footage of your bathroom by multiplying the length by width. After having that done, go for the fan that is rated with the same reading as square footage. For instance, 60 CFM fans are the best option for 60 square footage bathrooms.


  1. Do you have to replace a bathroom vent fan often?


It is true that they do not last forever, yet it is also not true that you need to replace the bathroom vent fans often. A vent fan can last for about ten years, which is not that short period.


  1. Can I vent a bathroom exhaust fan directly into a basement or attic?


Before installation, one must note that vent fans must always exhaust the outdoors. Never allow a duct to simply blow into the crawlspace, an attic, or some closed space.


  1. Will a dehumidifier remove moisture and prevent mold growth like a bathroom fan?


To put it in simple words, dehumidifiers just prevent molds by reducing the humidity level, and they do not kill the molds directly.




Poor ventilation can impose various harms to your bathroom. So, whenever you feel even a little thing bad happening about your ventilation system, don’t wait. It is only a sound ventilation system that can keep your bathroom safe. One must be cautious while choosing the right option to meet the requirements as per bathroom space. Not only installation but also cleaning is an essential step in maintaining a good ventilation process of a bathroom.