Latest Discussions : Basement & Foundation

amieok

06:00PM | 05/15/04
Member Since: 05/14/04
2 lifetime posts
It is terribly hot now and our attic fan is louder than we can bear with a new sound this season. It has a very loud continous squeaking. We purchased the small engine oil recommended by the local hardware store but we can't find the place one would add the oil. I've read about cups for oil on websites....I see what might be described as a cup - its a plate with a recessed area that surrounds the fan shaft. It is directly underneath the fan's belt. It is filthy of course and very dry...I am sure it should be cleaned before we add oil. I have no idea if this is where oil should be added but I don't see any other options. Please advise. This house was built in 1937. It could very well be the original fan for the house.


l8rg8r

09:41PM | 05/18/04
Member Since: 05/18/04
5 lifetime posts
It sounds like it is a direct shaft-driven blade. Or is the fan blade belt driven? Either way, the bearings may be worn out and that may be what is making the noise. If it is belt driven, it could be a dry or worn out belt.

Check the bearings by taking hold of the fan blades (after turning off the breaker, or removing the fuse,of course). Try wiggling the blade from side to side to see if there is significant 'play' in the shaft. If there is, the bearings need replacing. Otherwise, use a small piece of rag on a stick or wire and clean as much dirt and crud off the oiling area as possible. if you can't reach the shaft with the oil container, use an old clock repair trick and run he oil SLOWLY and a little at a time, down a piece of wire. Works great. If you do need bearings, Hunter may just have the parts you need.

amieok

04:18AM | 05/19/04
Member Since: 05/14/04
2 lifetime posts
Thank you for your informative reply. Its much more than I could get from Hunter when I called them about it. The tech person simply knew nothing about their whole house fans would not even try to find someone on their tech division who knew anything about them.

It is a belt driven fan whole house than that pulls air from our house into the attic. I have been turning it on for about 10 minutes at a time once a day just to pull the hot air out of the house. Yesterday it simply quit squeaking. Maybe the oil that was there already had a chance to circulate from the warm up periods. It has been an intermittent thing in that it was squeaking some last year - and this year it has been unrelenting for the past few weeks.

I will try the wire trick when the squeak starts again. Any hints as the the best way to clean this thing? It is old. Our house was a half way house before we moved in two years ago. It looks like the belt was replaced at some point since the box is still in the attic. Many thanks for your suggestions.

l8rg8r

09:37PM | 05/19/04
Member Since: 05/18/04
5 lifetime posts
"Temporarily" is probably the operative word. Once they start to make horrible noises, they usually continue. I have one bathroom fan that I have to take apart, clean and lube about once a year. Purrs like a kitten until it dries out again.

The fan probably has at least one of three kinds of bearings: solid metal bushings, ball bearings, or roller bearings. If they are the solid metal bushings (usually copper or brass), they are just a porus cast metal tube with a shoulder on one end that fits over the end of the shaft. If they get run dry very long, they will wear out of round. That could account for the irregular squeaking, for the times when it gets caught in a bad spot and squeaks metal-to-metal.

The roller or ball bearings can also do that if they get sticky and hang up and wear off unevenly. If they are not machine-pressed into place, they should not be that hard to replace. It may even be a simple bearing you could pull out and take to the hardware store to match.

It could be just the bearing in the fan shaft, just the motor shafts, or all three.

It could also be a glazed belt. You can buy a spray can of belt dressing at an auto parts store or even Wal Mart and try that on the belt first, if the belt is glazed (shiny) on the pully side. If it is very shiny, just replace it. Also check the tension on the belt. Should be snug, but not too tight. If it is loose and slipping, that could be your squeak.

Best fix would be to replace and properly lube the bearings IF they need it.

BV022807

11:08AM | 06/27/20
Just replaced a whole house fan after about 35 years. Bearing in motor shot and overheating to point of turning off and coming back on when cooled. It was a fire hazard!


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