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The 8 Best Bathroom Fans to Keep Your Powder Room Dry

Keep air circulating, humidity down and mold at bay with these bathroom fans.

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Exhaust fans are critical in rooms with small or no windows at all. Ironically, these window-challenged rooms, like laundry rooms and bathrooms, are most often the ones that have excessive amounts of moisture. The best bathroom fan will suck moist, humid air out of a room and exchange it with fresh, dry air from the outside.

A well-made bathroom fan will not only refresh stale air but will prevent condensation, eliminate odors and stop mold from forming. Here are our picks for the best bathroom fans to dry your damp lavatory.

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Best Bathroom Fan with Ultraviolet Light

Broan NuTone SurfaceShield Bathroom Fan

Indoor air quality is more important than ever, which is why we chose the Broan-NuTone SurfaceShield as one of our top performers. It uses patented antimicrobial violet light-emitting diode (LED) light technology and powerful ventilation to protect against bacteria, mold, mildew and fungal growth. DIYers will especially appreciate the Ezduct connector for easy room-side installation—no attic access is required.


  • Two lighting modes
  • TrueSeal damper reduces air leakage
  • Comes with SnapFit Flange Kit
  • 3-year warranty


  • Faceplate can come loose

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Most Decorative Bathroom Fan

Hunter Halcyon Bathroom Fan

Cast in contemporary chrome with a swirled marble glass cover, the Hunter Halcyon Bathroom Fan is designed to look good while removing excess moisture from your bathroom. Aesthetically, the fan mounts flush to the ceiling to maintain a sleek profile. On the practical side, the Halcyon boasts an airflow of 90 CFM and can be installed so that the fan and light work together or independently.


  • Stylish appearance
  • Light is included
  • Built-in damper
  • Heat- and water-resistant


  • Not fitting for large bathrooms

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Best Overall Bathroom Fan

Panasonic WhisperChoice

Of all the fans on this list, the Panasonic WhisperChoice is best suited for large bathrooms. Besides removing unhealthy air at a rate that exceeds industry standards, the versatile ceiling fan provides the proper airflow based on the size of the bathroom or the amount of moisture.

Toggle between 130 cubic feet per minute (just what you need for standard-sized bathrooms) and the more powerful 150 CFM (ideal for large and en suite bathrooms). It’s also UL Listed, so it can safely be placed above a shower enclosure. Plus, it comes with a Flex-Z Fast bracket for fast installation.


  • Made of durable galvanized steel
  • Can handle larger bathrooms
  • Low-profile housing
  • 6-year motor warranty


  • Doesn’t have a built-in heater

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Most Quiet Bathroom Fan

Panasonic WhisperCeiling Bathroom Fan

A noisy fan can discourage people from using it, rendering it ineffective. That won’t be a reality with the Panasonic WhisperCeiling bathroom fan. Noiseless and powerful, its SmartFlow technology senses static pressure and adjusts the speed accordingly for optimal output. Additionally, the fan has a Flex-Z Fast bracket and a 4- or 6-inch duct adapter for simple installation.


  • Noiseless
  • Airflow selector has low, medium and high speeds
  • Energy Star certified
  • Compliant with most building codes and standards


  • Doesn’t have a light

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Best Bathroom Fan with Heater

Delta Electronics BreezRadiance Fan with Heater

Wouldn’t it be nice to get out of the tub or shower in a warm, toasty environment? With the BreezRadiance bathroom fan, you can. The best bathroom fan for chilly and under-insulated bathrooms, the BreezRadiance comes with a built-in thermostat to regulate temperature. And the heating element does more than add comfort. Keeping your bathroom warm also inhibits vapors from condensing on floors, walls, ceilings and furniture.


  • Heating element with built-in thermostat
  • Energy-efficient
  • Galvanized steel construction
  • DC brushless motor for longevity


  • Air heats in one direction only

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Best Budget Bathroom Fan

Broan-NuTone Ceiling and Wall Ventilation Fan

Plug-in ready, the Broan-NuTone Ceiling and Wall Ventilation Fan is a steal at less than $25. Fitting for half baths and small powder rooms, the compact fan with torsion-spring grille mounting installs easily between ceiling joists and wall studs without tools.

Moreover, the galvanized steel housing stands up to corrosion, and the polymeric damper prevents cold backdrafts. This best bathroom fan pick is UL Listed, so it’s approved for use directly in tub or shower enclosures.


  • Less than $25
  • Doesn’t require professional installation
  • Made in the USA
  • Can continuously run to constantly remove contaminants


  • Not ideal for large bathrooms

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Best Bathroom Fan with Humidity Detector

Delta Electronics BreezGreenBuilder Exhaust Fan

Another standout from Delta Electronics, the dual-speed BreezGreenBuilder Exhaust Fan has a sensor that automatically kicks on the fan when the humidity level reaches a certain threshold. Available in either 80 or 100 CFM (and with or without an LED light), the fan is engineered with a direct-current brushless motor to ensure optimal reliability.


  • On-board humidity sensor
  • Impeller stops if obstructed for safety
  • Hanger bars included
  • Remote-controlled


  • Intended for new construction only

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Best Smart Bathroom Fan

Broan-NuTone Sensonic Bathroom Exhaust Fan

Equipped with dual, high-fidelity Sensonic speakers with Bluetooth functionality, the Broan-NuTone Sensonic lets you play your favorite tunes, listen to the news or catch up on your daily podcasts while bathing or getting ready for the day. The best bathroom fan for music lovers pairs with Bluetooth-enabled devices in seconds, leaving electrical outlets free for your getting-ready necessities.


  • Connects to Bluetooth-enabled devices
  • Quiet ventilation
  • Covers rooms up to 105 square feet
  • 3-year warranty


  • Ceiling mount only

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Types of Bathroom Fans

There are three different types of bathroom fans to choose from:

  • Ceiling-mounted: The optimal position to draw moisture from the bathroom (since warm, moist air rises) is venting through the roof. However, if there’s a problem that needs to be fixed, ceiling-mounted bathroom fans can be more difficult to access.
  • Wall-mounted: Since these fans may be mounted and vented through an exterior wall, there’s often no need for ducting. They tend to be easier to repair, but backdrafting can be an issue.
  • Inline: This type of bathroom fan can be installed within the home’s existing ductwork (often in the attic). The advantage to an inline fan is that it can exhaust more than one area of the house at the same time. The downside? They’re more complicated to install.

How We Found the Best Bathroom Fans

As shopping experts, our only job is to help you find a winning product. We start with the research and reporting basics—what products are made of, what they look like and how much they cost—to ensure that we’re only recommending the buys that are worth your time and money. Then, we research the features that speak to the product’s quality, taking advice from industry insiders and subject-matter experts on what makes a product a smart value (or worthy of a splurge). Finally, we do the work of combing through user reviews to see how real people interact with the product, and if it stands up to the test.


What are bathroom fans for?

The best bathroom fans get rid of excess moisture, odors and pollutants. They also remove vapor that fogs up mirrors and shower doors. In addition to providing proper ventilation in the bathroom, you’ll breathe easier and be much more comfortable.

How do bathroom fans work?

Simply put, a bathroom fan sucks the air out of a room, sending it outside through ductwork. For optimal performance, ensure your chosen bathroom fan is powerful enough for the space and properly installed.

Can bathroom fans run continuously?

Although continuously running the fan can remove excess humidity and contaminants in the air, it could cause the motor to wear out, and increase fire risk from dust and lint collecting in the grate. Be sure to clean exhaust fans of debris periodically.

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Toni DeBella
Toni DeBella is a culture and lifestyle writer, reviews expert and DIYer covering everything from pests to pool cabanas to painting. For over a decade, Toni was the owner of a successful faux finishing, mural and children’s furniture business before moving to a career in writing. Her work has appeared in The Telegraph, Fodor’s, Italy Magazine, DK Eyewitness travel guides and others. She lives in a medieval hill town in Italy where her bicycle “Raoul” serves as her primary mode of transportation.