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Question

With the recent high winds, we have noticed some noises coming from the attic and would like to find out what is making the noise. First, there was a loud sound coming from the attic that sounded like a fan spinning extremely fast.   Not quite sure what this might have been but it seemed to be in the vicinity of where the guest bathroom fan might be.  Still not sure how this would be occurring.   Secondly, the fan in the upstairs ceiling (the house fan) began turning very quickly and the fan louvers began opening so that the attic was open to the interior of the house.   Am certain that that is not supposed to be the case.   This all occurred during the windy period last week and again over the weekend.


Thoughts or suggestions? Mark


Answer:

This is a common occurrence during high winds. My house does the same thing. What is happening the wind is causing the house to be pressurized and then depressurized. The vents in the attic and the bathroom exhaust vents allow air to enter the house. This is what is causing the whirling noise in the bathroom. With the high winds the house is trying to equalize the pressure with the outside pressure. Just like a balloon. The air pressure has to escape and it will take the path of lease resistance. In your case it the whole house fan.  The fan will spin as the air passes through it. This equilibrium is always occurring without you noticing it, but it is intensified with the extremely high winds (50+mph) we have recently experienced.