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View Full Version : OMG its 108! Lets talk fans and ventilation!



LookmaNohands
Jul. 22, 2011, 03:33 PM
Okay I am sitting inside recovering from a minor surgery while my horses are dealing with the heat. My main barn is surprisingly cool because it is a well-ventilated bank barn. My helper hung fans and the horses are using them.

My other barn is MUCH hotter but still well ventilated except now I see maybe a copula with a fan would help a lot and may be better than just individual fans--which are not helping at the moment. It is a unique design with four stalls--two back to back. Two look into the hay barn which is open on one side and the other two look to the outside. It has about a 14 foot high roof and there isn't really any kind of venting at the top so that is why I am thinking copula with a fan.

The dumb plastic fans not made for barns scare me so I have been googling fans and copulas made for barns. I do not normally need fans in the main barn but am definitely using them now. I live above so at least I can monitor them.

I already have some construction going on so while I have a crew here I figure I might as well have them help with this. I have found lots of copulas but none with fans.

Can anyone out there help?

msj
Jul. 22, 2011, 04:28 PM
Try www.FarmTek.com. I know they have fans, and probably some good heavy duty ones to boot. I've dealt with them in the past and the service was excellent.

walkers
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:04 PM
Anyone use those battery operated fans from Walmart . I have only run-in sheds with no electricity and wonder if they would be worth buying in this heat wave. I think they take a d-cell.

HPFarmette
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:17 PM
I know people worry about fires, but I think you would wear out batteries really fast.
Here's another question. Since heat rises, has anybody thought about setting the fan closer to the floor?

AliCat518
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:31 PM
I went to walmart the other day looking for battery operated fans when my poor horse had a 103.3 fever in the 100 degree heat.

They dont sell them! At least not at the one here, and its a Super Center!

MistyBlue
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:21 PM
Battery operate fans suck. Don't bother. They're good for a desk at work, useless anywhere else. Plus the battery lasts a few hours only.

get outside safety rated fans. If adding ridge, cupola or vent fans, have them hard wired if possible.

having large vent fans up in the roof will make stall fans more effective. Stall fans usually blow down a bit and pull the hottest air from under the roof into the stall. Running vent fans up in the roof shoves the hot air out and creates a small breeze all the time from the air it sucks in through doors and windows. I have 2 20" roof vent fans in a 24x40 barn and they turn over all the air in the barn every 90 seconds. They can drop the inside temp by quite a bit.

However, when it's this hot and humid outside...even huge vent fans are only pulling in hot air anyway. Today it hit 101 outside with dew point in the 70s...my vent fans could only drop the interior temp to 95 or so by late afternoon. Before 3 pm or so it was in the 80s in there, but as the day wore on the temp kept rising in the barn. When it's not so hot and humid I can drop the temp in there a lot more. Less humid and I can make the barn temp 80 or so on a 95 degree day.

Another enormous benefit to cooling a barn is insulating the roof. The roof will suck in heat all day and after 4 pm or so when the sun angle is lower, that roof will disperse that heat right back into your barn. Making it hotter even as the air cools outside. Before 4 pm if it's really hot out, an uninsulated roof will store so much heat inside under the roof that it builds up and drops until your barn is stifling. so if you can, insulate a lot.

So jealous of your bank barn! So cool in summer and warm in winter!!!

judybigredpony
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:29 PM
Lowes sells Battery operated Fans...they last about umm 8 hours?? possibly more takes a bunch of batteries.

I use mine in my trailer haven't had to put new batteries in for 2 years?? but I only use it here and there for a few hours.

I have 3 vented Cupola's on both barns roofs...I made a frame w/ twine and 2X'4 to hold a box fan suspended in the hay drop center aisle blowing up into loft, between both end loft doors open and the cupola's it is helping draw air flow thru barn...even w/ fans on every stall and a big one blowing @ one end the barn is still 85 in there today..6 horses make alot of BTU's.

Petstorejunkie
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:51 PM
I use a high velocity fan from walmart (http://www.walmart.com/ip/Lasko-20-Wind-Machine-Indoor-Pivoting-Floor-Fan/4756123) placed on the side bars of the stall, so it blows onto mid to upper part of my horse.

You needn't worry about fires if you check your electrical daily and get rid of dust bunnies and cobwebs.

LookmaNohands
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:52 PM
Battery operate fans suck. Don't bother. They're good for a desk at work, useless anywhere else. Plus the battery lasts a few hours only.

get outside safety rated fans. If adding ridge, cupola or vent fans, have them hard wired if possible.

having large vent fans up in the roof will make stall fans more effective. Stall fans usually blow down a bit and pull the hottest air from under the roof into the stall. Running vent fans up in the roof shoves the hot air out and creates a small breeze all the time from the air it sucks in through doors and windows. I have 2 20" roof vent fans in a 24x40 barn and they turn over all the air in the barn every 90 seconds. They can drop the inside temp by quite a bit.

However, when it's this hot and humid outside...even huge vent fans are only pulling in hot air anyway. Today it hit 101 outside with dew point in the 70s...my vent fans could only drop the interior temp to 95 or so by late afternoon. Before 3 pm or so it was in the 80s in there, but as the day wore on the temp kept rising in the barn. When it's not so hot and humid I can drop the temp in there a lot more. Less humid and I can make the barn temp 80 or so on a 95 degree day.

Another enormous benefit to cooling a barn is insulating the roof. The roof will suck in heat all day and after 4 pm or so when the sun angle is lower, that roof will disperse that heat right back into your barn. Making it hotter even as the air cools outside. Before 4 pm if it's really hot out, an uninsulated roof will store so much heat inside under the roof that it builds up and drops until your barn is stifling. so if you can, insulate a lot.

So jealous of your bank barn! So cool in summer and warm in winter!!!

Luckily the roof in this barn insulated but with some very thin stuff. I just need a way to vent some of the heat. It is a small barn with just the stalls back to back. I am not sure I would really need a fan in a cupola or not.

So far I have only found two kinds of cupolas that come with fans. One kind is expensive and the other I don't have a price on yet. I wondered if I could put a regular exhaust fan that usually goes on a wall, in a cupola? I guess you have to be careful that it doesn't get dust in it so I think it should have shutters.

Anyone have experience with a fan in a cupola?

MistyBlue
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:53 PM
85 is pretty good considering how hot it's been. Especially with 6 horses.

Ya know, in temps and humidity like this I don't think anything short of multiple air conditioners is going to do a helluva lot.

MeghanDACVA
Jul. 24, 2011, 09:32 PM
Try www.FarmTek.com. I know they have fans, and probably some good heavy duty ones to boot. I've dealt with them in the past and the service was excellent.

We got the Canarm Industrial Ceiling Fans from FarmTek 2 yrs ago. Put 2 of them in over our 3 stalls. Our barn is big and open with a good breeze thru it but of course the stalls are not in the direct breeze path, have stall fronts, etc. So we were looking for a way to move air over and in the stalls. These sounded great. Researched them as to how high to put them (we had to work with how high our trusses are), how much air they would move, etc. I have been sorely disappointed. Using plain high velocity fans hung on the stalls would have been far more effective.

Jeannette, formerly ponygyrl
Jul. 24, 2011, 09:42 PM
A properly designed cupola and/or ridge vents should act as their own exhaust system by letting out the hot air which rises to them. Added fans can help with that, but if you are looking into structural changes, worth asking around and getting the right size and design for your situation.

Remind me, where is it cool or coolish these days ? Sigh...

KrazyTBMare
Jul. 24, 2011, 11:04 PM
Question - Can you just put exhaust fans just into the tin roof of the barn without a cupola? I have a ridge cap that obviously lets some hot air out that is rising up but thats it. I use high velocity fans blowing down and also in front of the stall bars and that really helps. My barn is like a shed row almost but it has an aisle in front that is covered under the roof along with big windows in the back of the stalls. With the way that we get the sea breeze and the breeze from the river, it comes right through the windows so its not TOO bad.

fivehorses
Jul. 24, 2011, 11:04 PM
I just bought some air king 18" industrial floor fans. They have helped so much, and I almost didn't buy them. One I am hanging from the rafters on one of those loopy di loop ties you use for water buckets. Really some decent baling twine or a lead rope would have worked too.
Anyhow it swings since it is hanging off a hook. So, now I have an oscillating fan! LOL.

I chose them because their motors are enclosed. I like the 18" but am eyeballing a 30" and adding a mister.
I feel guilty I am in ac and they are out there sweltering. I have two barns, one has a great breeze and both sides have drop down windows so virtually there are no walls on the upper half of each stall. And of course the barn doors are open. That barn stays cool, or cool in these temps is a relative term.

In my other barn, not as much ventilation, thus a real need for fans.
I also open the loft doors to allow the air to escape.

I ordered the air kings on line. Love em.

Prime Time Rider
Jul. 24, 2011, 11:36 PM
We bought a Porta Cooler (basically a big swamp cooler) for our barn. It works wel, but they're expensive (the one we purchsaed retails for $1200, we got ours on discount since it was returned to the store.

beaulilly
Jul. 25, 2011, 03:35 PM
Fivehorse, do you find that the casing on the motors becomes burning hot?

I too bought a high velocity fan with enclosed motor to reduce fire risk, but find the casing is so hot you cannot even hold your finger on it more then a few seconds. Mine is similar to yours 18" but made by Pinnacle fans. Pinnacle is actually who makes the fans at tractor supply their "CountyLine" which is where I bought mine. Had I known that before I would have just bought the Pinnacle fan online for $20 less.

When I called they said this was normal with high velocity fans. Seems like another fire hazard to me so I am looking at replacing it, but not sure if other brands do the same?

Honestly, I'm really contemplating just going back to new box fans each year. I don't think it's much safer for being so expensive.

Back to the thread, as far as overall barn ventilation, mine came with four of those twirling dodads on the roof line like you see on home roofs. It's a converted tobacco barn so the ceiling height is crazy. I'm not sure they do much and was just telling hubby the other day that I wanted to look into some sort of venting system.

My electrician was telling me about attic fans/blowers for the house which suck air from one end of the house (needs an open window) and then blows it into the attic at the other end via some grate in the ceiling then outside. Says he has seen it eliminate the need for AC in a home.

He's coming to wire the barn for instant water heaters so I will pick his brain about barn options while he is here.

rmh_rider
Jul. 25, 2011, 08:06 PM
I have one horse to bring in right now. She has a fan at her door with a chain across it. Have the wood stall door open, cooler that way. Then I have a fan over top at her feed/hay. She stands with her face in the fan most of the day snoozing. The fan at her door will keep all the flies off of her. She listens to music during the day. The rear of the stall is open to a run. So I try to blow all air out of the barn that way. Works pretty good.

I feel sorry for her so I bring her in. Too hot to ride. Whew. Humid, did I mention the humidity? 95% in the morning so hard to have any sweat evaporate from the horse. Well, walking along does provide them their own air.

Pray for fall to come quickly. Don't complain this winter how cold it is. Remember this summer.

I am also rinsing her when she is very sweaty and hot. She loves a good rinse and bath. She seems to like this arrangement and is waiting at the gate in the morning pretty much. If I feed her in the pasture, she is usually waiting at the gate to come in around 10-11 when it is radiatingly hot. (is that a word? It is now) She stays in until 3ish.

eponacelt
Jul. 25, 2011, 09:00 PM
Question - Can you just put exhaust fans just into the tin roof of the barn without a cupola? I have a ridge cap that obviously lets some hot air out that is rising up but thats it. I use high velocity fans blowing down and also in front of the stall bars and that really helps. My barn is like a shed row almost but it has an aisle in front that is covered under the roof along with big windows in the back of the stalls. With the way that we get the sea breeze and the breeze from the river, it comes right through the windows so its not TOO bad.

We installed nice stall fans from Tractor Supply (the ones made for barns with completely enclosed motors) in each stall blowing down on the horses, and then we installed exhaust fans (like you'd put in your attic) that are thermostat controlled.

The stall fans alone are nice, but the exhaust fans really cool down the barn. And the fact that they're thermostat controlled makes them easy to operate. Mine are set to come on when the temp in the upper part of the barn gets to 90deg.

fivehorses
Jul. 25, 2011, 09:19 PM
Fivehorse, do you find that the casing on the motors becomes burning hot?

I too bought a high velocity fan with enclosed motor to reduce fire risk, but find the casing is so hot you cannot even hold your finger on it more then a few seconds. Mine is similar to yours 18" but made by Pinnacle fans. Pinnacle is actually who makes the fans at tractor supply their "CountyLine" which is where I bought mine. Had I known that before I would have just bought the Pinnacle fan online for $20 less.

When I called they said this was normal with high velocity fans. Seems like another fire hazard to me so I am looking at replacing it, but not sure if other brands do the same?



Today was cool, so I didn't run them. Not sure if I will need to in the next few days, but I will check that and report back.

beaulilly
Jul. 26, 2011, 07:10 PM
Thanks fivehorses that would be very helpful.

I spoke with a rep at DuraFan which was my number one pick for a fan they are just out right now. Anyway, they said theirs will also get "quite warm" because it's a high velocity, however it does have a thermal overload switch off.

I'll have to check if the Pinnacle fans have that feature even though it wouldn't stop a fire risk should a wayward shaving come to land on the casing.

I see the Air King also has the thermal overload. I'll be interested to see how hot yours gets.

fivehorses
Jul. 26, 2011, 09:35 PM
I had the fans running all day today. It was not that hot out, but I like the fans to run to keep the flies out of the barn.

I checked them before I shut them down tonight. They had been on for at least 8 hours, and they were cool, not a bit of heat coming out behind the motor area.

Now you have me curious, so will check them every night, which probably isn't a bad idea anyhow.
I think towards the weekend it should be getting up to 90, so we'll see if that changes anything.

PS, thanks for checking to see if Air King had the thermal overload...I didn't know about that, I only was interested in the enclosed motor.

I really like them, they push quite a bit of air. BTW, I also run my fans on 3, the highest setting.

beaulilly
Jul. 28, 2011, 05:39 PM
Thanks for checking fivehorses. It looks like I'll go ahead and order from Air King and retire the Tractor Supply fan to garage use or something. Just not comfortable with things that get too hot to touch in the barn!

fivehorses
Jul. 28, 2011, 08:15 PM
Can you return it...I don't think a fan's motor should get hot, especially one designed for ag use.
I'd return it.
I will be going out soon and will check the fans again. They have been running all day.

fivehorses
Jul. 28, 2011, 09:35 PM
Ok, the air king fans were not hot, at all.

I have another fan I purchased at Lowes or HD last year...it does not have an enclosed motor, it also was not hot.

I guess I would be questioning the comment that an enclosed motor gets hot. That just doesn't seem right at all.

Last year, I did purchase a tractor supply fan, but returned it. It was way loud, didn't push a lot of air.

I don't think I'd use a fan whose motor got hot anywhere. I really think it might be defective.
Return it, get your money back.