Bathroom ceiling fan advice

Discussion in 'Repairs & Maintenance' started by GDE, 12th May, 2020.

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  1. GDE

    GDE Member

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    Hi, I recently had an electrician install a new ceiling exhaust fan in the ensuite bathroom as there was not one there already and I could see some mould forming in one of the roof corners. There is a window in the bathroom.

    The fan is vented into a drop ceiling and not ducted outside. I didn't know that I needed strata approval to do this (it's a unit). I am now concerned that this will cause issues in the long-term if the moisture is going into the roof and not outside. But given it is a drop ceiling is this okay? How can I get assurance that this won't cause issues? I am on the ground floor. Should I remove the fan? Replace the piece of drop ceiling it was mounted to?
     
  2. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    I am not a builder, but I'd not want moist hot air from a bathroom being directed into a drop ceiling with nowhere to get to the outside.

    If this was me (assuming I am reading this correctly), I'd remove it and install a fan through an outside wall if possible.
     
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  3. Marg4000

    Marg4000 Well-Known Member

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    Make sure you get strata approval to alter the outside of the building.
     
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  4. Tom Rivera

    Tom Rivera Property Manager Business Member

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    Mould inside the walls/ceilings can also prove a problem. I assume there's not a lot of ventilation around the ceiling?
     
  5. GDE

    GDE Member

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    No there is just a small window on the opposite side of the bathroom to the shower, which is why I had the fan installed in the first place (in the middle of the room). But now I'm worried that it will cause issues in the drop ceiling space and as I din't notify strata before doing it. The electrician said the fan was made to be installed without ducting but I guess I am still uncertain.
     
  6. GDE

    GDE Member

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    do you know who i could get to replace the ceiling panel?
     
  7. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn’t give up on getting a fan just yet because it sounds like one is needed. But it should really be ducted to the outside.

    What have the other apartments done?
     
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  8. GDE

    GDE Member

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    According to one of the other owners who is also on the strata committee and makes me very uneasy, no one else has a fan in the en-suite. They just keep the window open and have curtains to maintain privacy.

    I need to tell strata the fan has already been installed as I have no idea what to do at this point to keep them happy and as I am not sure how to replace the ceiling panel.
     
  9. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    The ceiling is probably plaster - if so, it’s just a matter of getting a plasterer in and then painting.

    However, would strata need to view the ensuite if you applied now to have a fan installed (I.e.maybe they wouldnt find out ?)

    You could then just ‘install‘ the fan (wink wink) but ideally with ducting too.
     
    Last edited: 16th May, 2020
  10. GDE

    GDE Member

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    I thought that because it’s in the bathroom it might need to be some sort of special material for a wet room?

    Do you see any other options for me? I know that strata won’t approve the fan venting into the roof.
     
  11. GDE

    GDE Member

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    I considered this but after my recent interactions with them I am almost certain they won't approve a ducted fan either. If I could figure out how to fix the ceiling panel I would just get rid of it but I feel like the ceiling panel might be some sort of special material also given it's in the bathroom.
     
  12. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    The other material it could be is fibre cement sheeting. But that is used as a backing for tiles / waterproofing so seems overkill for a ceiling.

    You can tell by rapping on it with your knuckles - the sound of plaster is different (compare with walls you know are plaster).

    Or just ask the electrician who installed the fan if it was plaster!

    Both are patched in a similar way. I highly recommend getting a plasterer for an invisible finish.

    Or disguise the gap with a light fitting that covers it! I would push on for the fan though.

    To get rid of mould properly, use the vinegar and three buckets method Choice recommends.
     
    Last edited: 17th May, 2020
  13. GDE

    GDE Member

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    Thank you for all your advice, I am very quickly regretting purchasing into a strata scheme.

    Do you have any tips on how to push through on fan approval?
     
  14. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    Sorry - have no experience at all with strata. But from reading this site, it seems like there are ways.

    Do a search on ‘strata approval‘ or similar on this site for some ideas.
     
  15. bunkai

    bunkai Well-Known Member

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    Join the strata committee. The owners corp needs a solution for bathroom exhaust.
     
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  16. Something_Wrong

    Something_Wrong Well-Known Member

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    Our unit had a Fan mounted into the little sliding frosted window in the bathroom, it made it so the window could not be opened but the fan was quiet and made a big difference to the dampness of the room.
    There was a PowerPoint located near by which had been chased into the wall as it was a brick wall. but you could have it wired to the light switch.

    Don't think strata was involved but there was a few units with them fitted and they are not permanent

    Window Exhaust Fans - Window Mount Exhaust Fans | Fansonline Australia
     
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  17. GDE

    GDE Member

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    Thank you, this is very helpful.
     
  18. Tom Rivera

    Tom Rivera Property Manager Business Member

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    I came back here to suggest this but you beat me to it!

    Just be aware some of those little window fans don't have much of an airflow capacity and can be noisy, so don't just pick a cheap one.
     
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