Hi All, I have 4 unit building in chicago and doesn't have vent fans in bathrooms. I see molds in bathrooms, so planning to install vent fans. Do you have any experiences/suggestions/price estimations. Can you plz message me good handy man contact details.
assuming the bathrooms are on an outside wall, if the ceiling joists run toward the outside wall then its a pretty easy job. Use a low-noise fan (I use panasonic FV-0511VQ1 from Amazon) and wire it directly to the overhead light so it comes on with the light switch - tenants won't even know its running. if you put it between the wall and the light you can punch through the outside wall from the cutout you make for the fan and also reach the electric in the light. This is a pretty simple DIY.
If you are on the top floor then going up and through the roof is another option. note the panasonic model above requires a pretty high joist - they make a smaller unit but it's noisier.
@Raj David where is your property located? Almost none of the buildings I own have bathroom fans and I haven't had significant issues. Sometimes if a unit hasn't been turned in 20 years there is some mildew, but we just kilz primer it to death and paint over it.
The code is that you need to have a window or a fan, so if you have a window you don't need a fan. Also, as @Kendall S Jones referenced, if the fan isn't on the same switch as the light fixture then the tenants won't use it anyways. I just purchased a new building in Berwyn and one of the tenants was complaining about mold in the bathroom. I asked if they had used the bathroom fan and the gentleman sheepishly said they didn't regularly. I tried to turn it on and it wasn't working... I will replace it and wire it in with the light fixture to tenant proof it.
My building had some bathroom mold when bought it and clogged up vents. I cleaned the vents and replaced with new fans from home depot which work great and were only around $50 a fan. Been 2 years since and no signs of mold or even mildew.
If you need to make a duct and install a fan that hasn't been there before it's an easy job and any handyman can get this done in a few hours and use a similar hole as laundry escape for where the air will go outside. Probably a few hundred dollar job or if you go the full permit route will be significantly higher.
You should be able to find someone to come install a fan for $300-$500 depending on the location and what the exterior building material is.
If you shoot me a PM I can provide a contact for a decent handyman, but curious to exactly where you are at in Chicago as it's such a big area?
@Kendall S Jones - Thank you, sure will order this.
@John Warren - ya Thank you, that's good point. I will put combined switch for light & Vent
@Henry Lazerow - Thank you & Can you PM me kitchen counter top warehouse guy contact details
@Jonathan Klemm - Sure will drop a message