Whole House Fan

Has anyone had success using a regular 20" box fan (2500cfm) as a whole house fan?
The $200 WHF's are more sturdy and move more air but since I would only use the fan 15-20days a year I think the cheaper box fan would be sufficient. My top floor area is 1600sqft and the basement is approx 1200 sqft.
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I use the cheapo $20 window fans. Put one blowing out in each window at one end of the house. At the other, put one in each window blowing in.
If you want to blow inside air out (like in the evening when its cooler outside), either set up all the fans to blow in, or all the fans to blow out, and open the other (non-fan) windows.You can control what rooms gets ventilation (and how much they get) by adjusting the amount that the windows in that room are open.
A whole house fan doesn't work in our house because of hte way its laid out - its too broken up and compartmentalized.....
--JD

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It would work fine by adjusting window openings. If you can do it with window fans, a whole house fan would work too.
The only thing that may prevent a whole house fan from working correctly is insufficient roof ventilation.
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Except window fans don't move 4500 cubic feet of air per minute or cool off the attic.
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I have used that idea, but I use a 20 inch round industial fan, moves 2x the air a box fan does. I place mine into the crawl space hole blowing up. Then open some widows on the opposite side of the house. The more air you move the cooler you house will get. I get a +5-7 degree difference to the outside air. House is higher by that much.
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Box fans are next to useless in this application. However, you do not have to go all the way to an installed whole house fan. Lakewood makes a large "high-velocity" fan that fits in a window and has AC-like accordion sides to block air from leaking back through the same window. This fan works very well. I bought mine locally but I have also seen it on the web, about $70 or so last time I looked. They have 2 sizes, use the larger one if it will fit.
Make sure you close all windows near the window the fan is in, and open windows on the far side of the house. Work with prevailing breezes--if your ummer breezes are from the south, put the fan in a north window (blowing out, of course). Go the one of the open windows and test with the fan on and off---you'll feel a huge difference. Do the same test with a cheap box fan---nothing.
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I use a 3-speed 16" Patton industrial fan, a PVC automotive fan shroud, and a 24-hour lamp/applicance timer for my "window-mount-whole-house-fan". Works great! And everything was "dhove" from a dumpster.
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