Best RV Roof Fans for Efficient Airflow and Cooling

Last Updated April 22, 2024

I can’t tell you enough how crucial a good RV vent fan has been to my travels! Picture this: you’re out on a road trip, surrounded by breathtaking scenery, but inside your RV, it’s a different story. Moisture from showers and cooking builds up fast, not to mention the everyday odors. Trust me, it gets stuffy. That’s where a top-notch RV vent fan comes into play. It sweeps away the humidity, the cooking smells, and brings down the temperature inside, making your RV feel like a breath of fresh air.

Once, after a particularly long day of exploring under the sun, I returned to my RV, which felt more like a sauna. Thankfully, with a quick flick of my vent fan switch, it transformed into my cool, comfortable sanctuary in no time. A good vent fan is a game-changer for a more enjoyable RVing experience!

Best RV Vent Fans

Best RV Vent Fan

I’ve rounded up some of the best RV vent fans out there to make your choice easier, whether you’re looking to upgrade or installing one for the first time. Let me tell you, upgrading my old fan was a game-changer. Last summer, I decided to replace my barely whispering vent fan with one of the top models I’d researched. The difference was night and day! Not only did it cool down the RV faster, but it also made less noise. So, if you’re on the hunt, you’re definitely in the right place to find the perfect fan for your RV adventures!

MAXXFAN Deluxe Fan and Rain Shield

MAXXFAN Deluxe Fan

Buy from Amazon

Having installed and used the MAXXFAN Deluxe in my RV, I can confidently say it stands out as one of the best RV vent fans currently available, especially for those who are serious about their van life comforts. From its seamless installation that doesn’t require professional skills to its exceptional functionality, this fan checks almost all boxes for an ideal RV vent fan.

What I particularly love about the MAXXFAN Deluxe is its built-in rain shield. This feature is invaluable as it allows the fan to operate in all weather conditions without letting water inside the RV. This is a game-changer when you’re parked and it suddenly starts pouring; you don’t have to worry about closing the vent and stifling the airflow​​.

The fan also features a ten-speed reversible motor, offering significant flexibility in air intake and exhaust settings. This versatility means I can adjust the indoor climate of my RV very precisely, maintaining comfort no matter the external weather conditions. The thermostat is another standout, automatically regulating the fan speed based on the internal temperature, which adds a layer of convenience I didn’t know I needed until I had it​.

Energy efficiency is another strong point. The fan operates on a remarkably low power draw at its lower settings, making it ideal for long-term use without draining the RV’s battery. This efficiency does not compromise its performance; even on low settings, it significantly enhances air circulation within the space​.

However, it’s not without its minor drawbacks. While generally quiet, the highest fan settings can get noticeably loud, which might be an issue for light sleepers or those who prefer a quieter environment. Additionally, the remote control, while convenient, only works within a limited range and doesn’t come standard with all models, so be sure to check this if it’s a must-have for you​​.

Pros

  • Built-in Rain Shield: This allows the fan to operate in any weather condition, ensuring that rain does not enter the RV, which is especially valuable in unpredictable weather​.
  • Thermostat-Controlled: The adjustable thermostat automatically turns the fan on or off based on the RV’s internal temperature, providing convenience and energy efficiency​.
  • Low Power Consumption: The fan’s energy efficiency is notable, using very little power on lower settings, which is crucial for long-term use without draining the RV’s battery​.
  • Versatile Speed Options: With up to ten speed settings, it offers flexible adjustments for airflow, helping maintain comfort inside the RV​​.
  • Remote Control: Available in some models, the remote control offers ease of operation, allowing adjustments without physically reaching for the fan’s controls​.

Cons

  • Noise at High Speed: While it operates quietly on lower settings, the fan can become noticeably loud at the highest speed, which might be a problem for some users.
  • Remote Control Limitations: The remote control does not come with all models and only works within a short range, which can be inconvenient​​.
  • Installation Challenges: While installation is generally straightforward, some users may need to trim parts or adjust settings during installation, which can require additional tools or help​.
  • Size and Space: While the fan itself is compact, its external components like the rain shield can take up significant roof space, which could be a concern for those with already crowded RV roofs​​.

In summary, the MAXXFAN Deluxe is a solid investment for any RV enthusiast looking for reliable, versatile, and efficient air ventilation. Whether you’re dealing with hot summers or chilly autumns, this fan is up to the task of keeping your RV comfortable, making it an essential addition to your travel gear.

Dometic Fan-Tastic RV Roof Vent 1250

Dometic Fan-Tastic RV Roof Vent

Buy from Amazon

After using the Dometic Fan-Tastic RV Roof Vent Model 1250 in my own camper van, I’ve gathered some first-hand insights that I’m eager to share with fellow RV enthusiasts looking for an effective ventilation solution.

The Dometic Fan-Tastic Vent 1250 is a straightforward, reliable option that fits easily into the standard 14″ by 14″ roof openings found on most RVs. One of the standout features of this model is its simplicity. It offers three fan speeds (low, medium, high), which is sufficient for maintaining a comfortable environment inside the RV without being overly complicated. The fan’s operation is remarkably quiet, ensuring that it doesn’t disturb the peace of your mobile living space.

A manual lift dome accompanies the fan, allowing users to control ventilation manually if preferred. While this model does not include a rain sensor, which some might view as a drawback, it provides a high level of airflow control with the ability to reverse the fan direction. This is quite handy for either drawing fresh air in or pushing stale air out, depending on your needs.

Installation of the Fan-Tastic 1250 is user-friendly, with most users being able to install the vent themselves without needing professional help, making it a cost-effective choice for DIY enthusiasts. The design is durable and seals tightly when not in use, which is excellent for energy efficiency and preventing leaks.

However, if you’re in an area with frequent rainfall, you might consider purchasing an additional vent cover to protect against water ingress, as this model doesn’t automatically close in wet conditions like some higher-end models with rain sensors.

Pros

  • Simple Operation: The Fan-Tastic 1250 features a straightforward three-speed control (low, medium, high) which makes it easy to adjust to your comfort level without unnecessary complexity​.
  • Quiet Performance: Designed to operate quietly, it ensures that your RV environment remains peaceful, without the annoyance of a noisy fan​.
  • Manual Control Flexibility: With its manual lift dome, users have full control over air flow, enhancing the customization of ventilation​.
  • Reversible Air Flow: This feature allows you to either draw fresh air into the RV or exhaust stale air out, providing versatile air management​.
  • Ease of Installation: The vent fan is designed to fit standard RV roof openings and is typically easy enough for DIY installation, saving costs on professional installation services​​.

Cons

  • No Automatic Rain Sensor: Unlike more advanced models, this vent does not come with a rain sensor, which means it won’t automatically close when it starts raining. This could be a disadvantage in rainy climates unless an additional cover is purchased​.
  • Limited Speed Settings: With only three speed settings, it may not offer the fine-tuned control provided by models with more speed options, which might be a drawback for those seeking more precise airflow adjustments​.
  • Manual Dome Operation: While the manual dome provides control, it might be less convenient than models with electronic or remote controls, requiring physical adjustment to open or close​.

Overall, the Dometic Fan-Tastic Vent 1250 is a solid choice for RV owners who want a mix of functionality, simplicity, and reliability in their vent fan. It doesn’t come with some of the more advanced features like automatic sensors or remote controls found in pricier models, but it covers all the basics superbly. For anyone looking to enhance their RV’s ventilation without breaking the bank or overcomplicating things, this model is definitely worth considering.

Heng’s RV Camper Trailer Universal Roof Vent

Heng’s RV Roof Vent

Buy from Amazon

As someone who has traveled extensively in my RV, I’ve had the chance to try out various vent fans, including the Heng’s RV Camper Trailer Universal Roof Vent. I must say, for those on a budget, it’s a surprisingly decent option. Here’s my personal take on it, which might help you if you’re considering it for your RV setup.

Installation Ease: The Heng’s roof vent is user-friendly when it comes to installation. It comes with molded mounting tabs, which simplify the installation process significantly, allowing for a relatively quick setup without needing a plethora of tools.

Performance: Equipped with a 12-volt fan and 6-inch blades, the unit effectively moves air, helping maintain a comfortable environment inside the RV. The fan operates with low noise, which is a plus for nights when you need a quiet environment to catch some sleep.

Durability and Design: While the vent includes a strong galvanized steel roof flange and a mill finish, it’s basic in terms of advanced features. This simplicity is expected, given its price point. The fan features a substantial fine mesh screen that does a decent job of keeping debris out.

Practicality: One particularly handy feature is its automatic rain sensor, which offers peace of mind if you’re away from the RV and unexpected rain starts. This means the vent automatically closes when it detects rain, preventing water from entering your space​ (RV 4 Campers)​.

Downsides: However, it’s important to note that some users have raised concerns about the product’s long-term durability. Moreover, customer service experiences have been less than stellar, which can be a significant drawback if issues arise​ (RV 4 Campers)​.

Overall: For those who RV occasionally and don’t want to invest heavily in a vent fan, the Heng’s RV Camper Trailer Universal Roof Vent offers a cost-effective solution. It’s not the most durable or feature-packed on the market, but it covers the basics well, making it a worthy consideration for budget-conscious travelers.

Pros

  • Affordable: One of the most budget-friendly options on the market, making it accessible for casual or occasional RV users.
  • Easy Installation: Features molded mounting tabs for a tool-free install, simplifying the setup process.
  • Low Noise: Operates quietly, which is ideal for maintaining a peaceful environment inside the RV.
  • Automatic Rain Sensor: Adds convenience and protection, automatically closing the vent in rainy conditions to prevent water ingress.
  • Versatility: Fits most standard-sized RV roof vent openings, enhancing its compatibility with various RV models.

Cons

  • Durability Issues: Some users have reported concerns about the long-term durability of the vent, indicating it may not withstand frequent use or harsh conditions.
  • Basic Features: Lacks advanced features that more expensive models offer, such as multiple fan speeds or remote control operation.
  • Customer Service: There are reports of poor customer service, which could complicate resolving issues or obtaining support.
  • Installation Needs: Despite the easy setup, some users might still need professional help, especially if unfamiliar with RV modifications.

For fellow RV enthusiasts looking to keep their environment fresh without breaking the bank, this model can be a practical addition to your travel gear. Just be mindful of its limitations in terms of durability and customer support.

MAXXFAN Plus High Powered Ceiling Fan

MAXXFAN Plus High Powered Ceiling Fan

Buy from Amazon

As someone who loves hitting the road in my RV, finding the right vent fan is crucial for comfort and convenience. The MAXXFAN Plus High Powered Ceiling Fan from Maxxair has been a game-changer for my travels. This particular model, with its 10-speed settings, allows for excellent airflow control, whether pulling fresh air in or pushing stale air out of the RV​.

One of the standout features of the MAXXFAN Plus is its low energy consumption. It’s quite efficient on power, which is a big plus when you’re relying on solar panels or trying to conserve battery life​ (Camper Van Building Community)​. Additionally, the built-in rain sensor automatically closes the vent when it detects rain, ensuring the inside of your RV stays dry without any manual intervention—a feature I’ve found incredibly handy during unexpected showers​.

Installation was straightforward and didn’t require any special tools, thanks to the tool-free installation design​. The remote control functionality is another convenient feature, allowing me to adjust settings from anywhere inside the RV. Whether I’m cooling down the space on a hot day or removing cooking odors quickly, this fan handles it all effortlessly​.

The durability and build quality are impressive, with the vent’s dome designed to prevent fluttering during high winds or while driving. This ensures a quiet and stable operation, which enhances the overall peacefulness of my RV environment​​.

For anyone in the RV community looking for a reliable, high-performance vent fan that balances functionality with energy efficiency, the MAXXFAN Plus is an excellent choice. It fits perfectly into the standard 14″x14″ roof openings found on most RVs, making it a versatile option for almost any vehicle​

Pros

  • Energy Efficiency: The fan is noted for its low power draw, making it ideal for RV owners who rely on battery power or solar panels for electricity. This feature helps to extend the usage time without needing frequent recharges​​.
  • Built-In Rain Sensor: The rain sensor is a standout feature that automatically closes the vent when it detects rain, protecting the interior of the RV from water damage. This automatic feature adds convenience and peace of mind, especially during unexpected weather changes​.
  • Easy Installation: The MAXXFAN Plus is designed for easy, tool-free installation, which is a significant advantage for DIY installers. This feature makes it accessible for most RV owners to install themselves without extra costs​.
  • Remote Control Functionality: The inclusion of a remote control allows users to adjust the fan’s settings from anywhere within the RV, adding a layer of convenience and comfort​.
  • Durable Construction: The fan is built to withstand high winds and constant use, with a design that prevents the dome from fluttering, thus ensuring quiet operation. This is particularly beneficial for those who travel frequently or live in their RV.

Cons

  • Lack of a Built-In Thermostat: Unlike some other models, the MAXXFAN Plus does not come with a built-in thermostat for automatic temperature control, which might be a downside for those seeking fully automated climate control.
  • Manual Operation for Some Functions: Despite the remote control, certain operations such as activating or deactivating the rain sensor must be done at the keypad, which can be inconvenient if the keypad is not easily accessible​.
  • Cost: While offering several advanced features, the MAXXFAN Plus can be considered pricey compared to simpler models. This might be a consideration for those on a tighter budget​.
  • No Rain Guard: The model does not include a rain guard, which is a separate purchase. This additional expense and installation step might be a drawback for those in particularly rainy climates​.

Overall, the MAXXFAN Plus enhances my RV living experience by providing comfort, convenience, and reliability, making it a top contender in the world of RV vent fans.

Livpow RV Roof Vent

Livpow RV Roof Vent

Buy from Amazon

After using the Livpow RV Roof Vent with Rain Sensor & Powered Lift for several months in my RV, I have found it to be an invaluable upgrade from the standard vent fans that come with most recreational vehicles. This model really stands out for its user-friendly features, especially at such an affordable price point.

One of the standout features of the Livpow vent is the automatic rain sensor, which allows me to leave the vent open without worrying about sudden rain showers. This feature automatically closes the dome and shuts off the fan when it detects moisture, making it perfect for those unpredictable weather days. It’s a real peace of mind feature, particularly when I’m away from the RV or when unexpected rain hits during the night.

The vent is equipped with a powerful fan that offers three-speed settings, capable of moving up to 950 cubic feet per minute on the highest setting. This means it can quickly expel stale air and draw in fresh air, helping to maintain a comfortable atmosphere inside the RV. The powered lift feature is also a boon, allowing for effortless opening and closing of the vent dome, which is a great plus over manual options.

Installing the Livpow vent was straightforward, fitting a standard 14” by 14” roof opening. It comes with all necessary mounting hardware and a white interior garnish that blends well with most RV interiors. The smoke-colored dome is a nice touch, filtering out UV rays while allowing natural light to enter, which helps keep the interior bright but protected.

In terms of drawbacks, while the vent covers most needs, those looking for ultra-quiet operation might find it a bit noisier than some higher-end models. Also, for full rain protection while continuing ventilation, an additional cover is recommended, which is sold separately.

Pros

  • Automated Rain Sensor: The built-in rain sensor automatically closes the vent when it detects moisture, ensuring no rain enters the RV, which is highly convenient for all weather RVing.
  • Powered Lift Dome: Features an automated dome that opens and closes at the push of a button, enhancing ease of use, especially beneficial for those who may find manual operation cumbersome.
  • High Airflow Efficiency: With a fan that can move up to 950 cubic feet per minute, it efficiently circulates air, quickly removing stale air and drawing in fresh air to maintain a comfortable interior climate.
  • Easy Installation: Designed to fit standard 14” by 14” roof openings, this vent fan includes all necessary mounting hardware, making the installation process straightforward and DIY-friendly.
  • Remote Control Operation: Enhances user convenience by allowing adjustment of the vent settings from anywhere inside the RV.

Cons

  • Additional Cover Required for Continuous Operation in Rain: To keep the vent open and the fan running during rain, an additional external cover is needed, which is sold separately.
  • Noise Level: Some users might find the fan a bit noisier compared to more expensive models, which could be a drawback for those who are sensitive to noise.
  • Manual Override Limitations: While there is a manual knob for emergency use, the reliance on powered operation may be a drawback during power outages if the backup manual operation is not as robust.

Overall, the Livpow RV Roof Vent is a solid choice for any RV owner looking for a reliable, feature-rich vent fan that won’t break the bank. It’s particularly suited for those who appreciate the convenience of modern features like a rain sensor and remote control, adding a touch of comfort and luxury to the RV experience​.

What is an RV Vent Fan & Why Do You Need One?

What’s an RV vent fan, you ask? Well, imagine a lifesaver that sits right on your RV’s ceiling! It’s a fan with a vent that cranks up or pops open automatically to keep fresh air circulating. This little gadget has been essential for me, especially when dealing with the heat and humidity that build up after a day of adventures.

Why do you need one? Unlike just cracking a window, an RV vent fan is super effective at drawing out stuffiness and odors without letting in all the dust and road grime. Plus, it’s up high, so it pulls in cleaner air, not what’s swirling around at street level.

And here’s a kicker—when I’m out exploring, I can leave the vent open without worrying about security, something I can’t do with just windows. It’s also a godsend for my dog, Max. Even when it’s toasty outside, I know he’s lounging in comfort, thanks to our trusty vent fan. Trust me, having a good RV vent fan changes the game for both comfort and peace of mind on the road.

Buyer’s Guide to Buying the Best RV Vent Fan

Let me help you navigate the essentials you need in a good RV vent fan, based on my own upgrade experience. It’s all about finding that perfect blend of functionality, reliability, and convenience.

Price: Prices vary, starting at about $40 for basic models. These work fine but might lack durability and features. I found spending between $80-$150 hits the sweet spot, offering features like reversible airflow and remote controls. High-end models over $150 pack in longevity and advanced controls, which are great if you’re using your RV frequently.

CFM Rating: This is all about air movement; higher CFM means faster odor and moisture removal. But remember, the maximum CFM usually only applies at top speed.

Airflow Direction: Cheaper fans might only offer one-way air movement. However, bi-directional airflow is a game changer, allowing you to either pull in fresh air or push out stale air depending on your needs.

Remote Control: A remote is a back-saver if your fan’s placed high up or directly over your bed. Just note that some remotes need a clear line of sight to work, which can be tricky in a long RV.

Speed Control: More speeds give you more control. Low speeds are great for quiet air circulation, while high speeds are better for quick cooling or intense odor removal.

Rain Sensor: Rain sensors automatically close the vent when it rains—super useful if you’re away from your RV. But for pet owners, make sure your model allows for air flow even when it’s closed, or consider a model with a protective cover.

Power and Energy Draw: Most RV vent fans are designed for low energy consumption from your 12V DC battery, making them perfect for off-grid use.

Fan Size: Standard vent openings are 14” by 14”, with fan sizes usually between 10” and 12” for optimal efficiency.

Ceiling Height: If you have high ceilings, consider a fan with a remote control. Also, a higher CFM rating might be necessary to efficiently move air in larger spaces.

Fan Noise: If you’re sensitive to noise, look for a fan with adjustable speeds to keep things quieter, especially important if the fan is near your sleeping area.

Ease of Installation: Upgrading is usually straightforward. However, installing a new fan might require cutting into your roof, which might be better left to professionals if you’re not confident in doing it yourself.

Rain Shield and Dome: To keep the fan running in all weather, a rain shield is crucial. This lets air circulate without letting rain in.

Lid Operation: Automatic lid mechanisms are convenient, especially with a remote. Still, having a manual option is useful during power outages.

Upgrading my RV’s vent fan was a transformative experience, making every trip more comfortable. With these tips, you’re set to find a fan that suits your needs and enhances your RV lifestyle.

Final Thoughts

I’ve had my fair share of experiences with RV vent fans, and let me tell you, there’s a perfect match for everyone out there! Whether you crave simplicity, seek top-of-the-line features, or need something budget-friendly, our reviews have got you covered.

For those who don’t mind splurging for the crème de la crème, I highly recommend the Maxxfan Deluxe Fan and Rain Shield. It’s a superstar with 10 speeds, a whopping 900CFM airflow, and a remote control for effortless operation. Its automatic opening and reliable venting even in rain make it a favorite among RVers. Plus, it’s durable and pet-friendly. I remember one rainy night, this fan was a lifesaver, keeping the air fresh while keeping the rain out!

On a budget? Check out the Heng’s RV Camper Trailer Universal Roof Vent. It’s super easy to install and straightforward to use. When my old fan kicked the bucket, switching to Heng’s made a world of difference without breaking the bank.

And if you’re looking for something in between, the Livpow RV Roof Vent is a steal. It boasts an impressive 950CFM, comes with three speeds, a power-lifted dome, remote control, and a rain sensor—all at a great price. It’s my go-to for quick and efficient air circulation without splurging.

Whatever your needs, picking the right vent fan can elevate your RVing experience from good to great!

Leave a Comment