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How To Repair or Replace an RV Vent Fan

It’s no secret that the RV vent fan that comes standard in most motorhomes and trailers is a wonderful accessory. The fan can be used to get rid of excess moisture, get air moving through the rig, or send bad smells outdoors. 

Unfortunately, your RV vent fan probably won’t last forever. At some point, it will inevitably start to malfunction in one way or another, leaving you with the task of either repairing or replacing it to continue enjoying its benefits.

The good news? Repairing and replacing RV vent fan accessories is something most handy individuals can do on their own. Here’s what you need to know. 

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Repairing Your RV Vent Fan

First, let’s talk about repairing the fan. After all, this is a cheaper option and is often much easier than replacing the entire unit as well. 

Check the Wiring and Circuit Board

First, unplug the RV from electricity, disconnect the batteries, and remove the interior trim ring on your RV vent fan to take a look at the fan’s wiring and make sure nothing has come disconnected. If it has, reconnect it using wire nuts. 

If that all looks good, visually inspect the circuit board to see if anything looks fried. If so, a plug-and-play circuit board from the manufacturer might do the trick. 

Change the Remote Batteries

If the fan will turn on using the switch on the unit, but the remote is acting up, you may just need to replace the remote batteries. (This applies only to fans with remote controls, of course.)

Open the Lid Manually

Sometimes, the lid motor dies, but the fan itself works fine. Try opening the lid manually. If this solves your problem, replace the lid motor rather than the whole unit.

Look for a Stuck Button

Fan-Tastic Vent fans, for instance, are equipped with a safety button that activates when the lid is closed, preventing the fan from operating. Occasionally, this button may become stuck, causing the fan to not run even when the lid is open. To resolve this, go up to the roof and manually press the button to ensure it pops back up.

Replace the Lid

If the only problem you’re having is a broken vent fan lid, you can actually just replace the lid instead of the whole fan. 

The Best RV Vents Fans

If these solutions don’t resolve the issue, it might be necessary to replace the entire unit. Unsure about which replacement fan to choose? Below, you’ll find three outstanding options for RV vent fan replacements. One of these might be the perfect fit for your needs.

Our Top Pick: MaxxAir MAXXFAN Deluxe

Our favorite RV vent fan on the market right now is the MaxxAir MAXXFAN Deluxe. This awesome vent fan has all the bells and whistles, including a built-in cover that prevents rain from entering the RV, along with a remote control. This fan delivers the most powerful airflow compared to other RV vent fans on the market, making it an ideal choice for boondockers who need to stay cool without relying on air conditioning.

Quietest Option: Fan-Tastic Vent Fan

The Fan-Tastic Vent Fan is also a wonderful choice and doesn’t come in far behind the MaxxAir in terms of quality. The air current it provides is not quite as strong, but it is much quieter when running. It also provides buyers with a variety of upgrade options. 

Best Budget Option: Ventline RV Roof Vent Fan

There is absolutely nothing fancy about the Ventline RV Roof Vent Fan. That said, it is incredibly budget-friendly and a great option if you need to replace your fan but don’t have the funds to purchase one of the upgrades listed above. Not only is the fan super affordable, but it also includes an install kit with putty tape, screws, and everything else you need to get the job done. 

How To Replace an RV Vent Fan

Once you’re ready to install your new RV vent fan, prepare for some hands-on work. While the process isn’t overly complex, it’s advisable to read these instructions and watch the accompanying video to fully understand the steps involved:

  1. Safety First: Begin by disconnecting your RV from any external power sources and disconnecting the RV batteries. This ensures no electricity is flowing to the fan during installation.
  2. Interior Preparation: Inside the RV, remove the interior fan trim ring from the ceiling. You’ll need a screwdriver for this step.
  3. Roof Work: Next, go up to the RV’s roof. Here, you’ll remove the existing sealant around the vent fan, unscrew and disconnect the old fan, and then carefully lift it out of the roof.
  4. Wiring the New Fan: Connect the new fan’s wiring to your RV’s wiring system using wire nuts. Before proceeding, reconnect the RV batteries and test the new fan to ensure it’s working correctly. Once tested, disconnect the batteries again for safety as you continue the installation.
  5. Securing the Fan: Place the new fan into the roof opening and secure it with screws. Apply lap sealant around the fan’s exterior, making sure to cover all screw heads to prevent leaks.
  6. Final Touches Inside: Return inside the RV and attach the new trim ring with screws to complete the installation.

Safety Warning: Disconnecting the batteries after testing and before finalizing the installation minimizes the risk of electrical accidents or damage.

Care for Your RV Vent Fan

Once you get your RV vent fan repaired or replaced, you probably won’t want to deal with any more fan issues for a while. For this reason, we highly recommend using the following tips to keep your fan in tip-top shape:

  • Run the fan only when you’re actively using it. This will help keep the motor from being burned out prematurely. 
  • Clean the mesh screen on your vent fan unit regularly to remove debris and buildup. 
  • Close the fan lid when it’s raining unless you have a rain-proof cover. 
  • Check roof seals regularly for water leaks. 

As you can see, repairing or replacing your RV vent fan is totally doable, and taking good care of your fan is even easier. Why not get your fan up and running again so you can enjoy your next camping trip in complete comfort?

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