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All you need to know before embarking your DIY Renovation Journey Part 8 – Creating a Hotel-styled Bathroom with KDK Ceiling Exhaust Fan

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Why are bathroom exhaust fans important?

Exhaust fans are excellent solutions for poorly ventilated bathrooms since they keep moisture at bay by removing a high level of moisture. It is critical to keep moisture levels low in the bathroom in order to prevent damage to the un-tiled walls and ceiling which is caused by the mold and mildew growth. They are also useful for removing nasty odors from the bathroom!

Most of the poorly ventilated bathrooms can be found in Condominium private apartment unit designs for some of them come without any bathroom window! To address this issue, the developers would usually include a ceiling mounted exhaust fan in the affected bathroom.

Design: Artistroom


Design: akiHAUS

Image from Steamshower and bath us

Image from trendir

Image from myhouseidea


What are the types of bathroom exhaust fans available?

There are the two main types of bathroom exhaust fans suitable for HDB and Condominium and private apartment units in Singapore: ceiling and window mounted exhaust fans.

(A) Ceiling Mounted Exhaust Fans
Ceiling mounted fans are commonly found in hotels and Condominium and private apartment units. As they are mounted in the false ceiling, the stale air will be expelled upwards through the false ceiling and duct, before the air is exhausted outside the bathroom via a grille vent.

KDK ceiling mounted ventilation fan, model 17CUF
Image from KDK SG

“Cleaner” and sleeker looking.
Can be installed in the bathroom that comes without windows.

False Ceiling needs to be installed.
More expensive and difficult to install.


(B) Window Mounted  Exhaust Fans
These are installed directly on the window and thus, no ductwork is required to make a pathway for the stale air to be expelled outside the bathroom.

KDK window mounted ventilation fan, model 15WUD
Image from KDK SG

Cheaper and easier to install.
No need to have a false ceiling to be installed.

Can’t be installed in the bathroom that comes without windows.
Not aesthetically pleasing.


4 things you need to look out for in a Bathroom Exhaust Fan

a. Strength of the Exhaust Fan
The size of your bathroom will influence the strength of the exhaust fan you should get. Generally, the strength of the exhaust fan is measured by the airflow of one cubic foot per minute (CFM) for every square foot of the bathroom area. Therefore, it is highly recommended to get the exhaust fans which have CFM labeled. The CFM numbers can be used to calculate the number of exhaust fans you need if your bathroom is very big. In addition, a general rule of thumb is to get 2 medium strength preforming exhaust fans to load balance instead of relying on 1 heavy strength performing exhaust fan.

b. Exhaust Fan Noise
Generally, a heavy performing exhaust fan would be much louder than a light performing exhaust fan. The noise is usually measured in A-weighted decibels, dB(A). Generally, the higher powered exhaust fan is nosier than a small unit.

c. Dimensions
If your bathroom has already come pre-installed with the false ceiling, it is imperative that you check out the height of the internal false ceiling to ensure that there is enough clearance to install the ceiling mounted exhaust fan. You should leave at least 4 cm of the buffer so that the unit can be comfortably installed or removed in future.

d. Warranty
Since a lot of work is required to install a bathroom exhaust fan, it is best to purchase one from reliable resources. They should come equipped with at least a few months of warranty.


3 DIY bathroom ceiling exhaust fan Challenges

a. Hard to incorporate ceiling exhaust fan in the bathroom design
Window mounted exhaust fan is the most widely available, cheaper and easier to install. Unfortunately, it is not approved for installation by the developer. Therefore, we had to turn to ceiling mounted exhaust fan instead. Before we begin searching for a suitably sized and powered ceiling exhaust fan, we had many rounds of discussion on the most appropriate location to position the ceiling mounted exhaust fan.
The ceiling exhaust fan should be situated right in the middle of the bathroom. To ensure efficiency, it is best to ensure that the ductwork has the shortest travelling distance.

b. Extremely difficult to source for the parts
Before we start to search for the ceiling mounted exhaust fan, we need to understand how it works. Aside from the ceiling mounted exhaust fan, there is a flexible duct pipe, also known as ducting hose, and  soffit vent, which is commonly known as ventilation grill. This meant that we had to source for all these 3 different parts before we can get them installed in our bathrooms.

Here is how the  flexible ducting hose looks like.

Here are some examples of the ventilation grills.

Based on the specifications of the 17 CUF KDK model, the diameter of the ducting hose must be 100 mm. Well, we had a tremendously tedious time calling up many suppliers to find out whether if they carry the ceiling mounted exhaust fans and the accompanying flexible ducting hose.

In the end, we managed to order two 17 CUF KDK ceiling mounted exhaust fans from CHOO CHIANG MARKETING PTE LTD. They  also provide the flexible ducting hose at a very reasonable price. Always remember to contact them for the availability of the items before making a trip down to purchase the items. Lastly, we ordered the ventilation grills from Taobao.

c. Finding the right people to install
Finally, finding the right person for the installation was a challenge too. Fortunately, our renovation Project Manager was able to find someone trustworthy and experienced to do it.

Here are some pictures of how the bathroom looks like after the installation is complete.

Next Post: 12 Bathroom DIY Renovation Lessons – All you need to know before embarking your DIY Renovation Journey Part 9


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