When you turn on your bathroom fan, you may not think about where all that air goes and why, but that fan serves an important purpose. Bathroom ventilation fans remove humid air from the living space to the outside of the home. Removal of air with high moisture content is necessary to avoid mold and failure of your gypsum products such as drywall and plaster. If your ceiling absorbs too much water through constant exposure to steam and showering, then you probably have noticed the paint bubbling or cracking or wallpaer curling at the edges. The most effective way to remove moisture is having a good quality ventilation fan and ensures that it runs during showering and remains on for at least 15 minutes after finishing the shower.
If you don’t have an attic fan you should strongly consider installing one. If you do have a fan, that doesn’t mean it was installed properly. Often times bathroom fans are installed but not properly ducted out of the home or the duct material isn’t sufficient. The best material for duct work is always solid sheet metal, but often times due to space restrictions flexible ductwork is needed. The ductwork should always be installed in the most vertical way possible to avoid condensation build up in the material which can lead to pockets of water actually sitting in the ductwork itself.
The most common flaw in many households is that the ductwork is left in the attic space and not vented through the soffit, exterior wall, or roof. If your bathroom lacks a fan or if that fan has no ductwork then there are multiple do-it-yourself kits with installation instructions included. Installing a fan and making sure it is properly ventilated will not only help remove air moisture, but will also extend the life of your wall and ceiling coverings.