Garages need proper ventilation to prevent stale smells, mould growth and the build-up of gasoline fumes. Finished garages with sheetrock or panelling on the walls lack ventilation to allow air flow for storing seasonal items or chemicals. Older, unfinished garages, where bare wood of the construction is visible all the way to the roof, have better air flow, but may still be insufficient when used as a work space. There are a number of choices and ways to vent a garage.
Add a window fan
Set a box-style window fan in a window with the fan pulling air outward. The fan will pull the stale garage air out through the window, as fresh air is pulled through the garage from an open door or gaps around the garage door.
Install a small second window
Many garages, whether attached or separate from the house, have one window. By installing a second window on an opposite wall, a natural air current will pass through the garage.
Install static vents
Static vents are single units, where horizontal panels appear similar to those seen on shutters. The always-open panels allow air to pass while the slants prevent rain from entering. For best results to vent a garage, position the static vent high up on a wall opposite the existing window. A natural air current will pull air across and up through the garage.
Install roof turbine vent
Roof turbine vents are a good option for an unfinished garage. Air is pulled up through the turbine using natural wind currents, without the need for electricity.
Install bathroom exhaust fan
A small exhaust fan, similar to those used in bathrooms, is sufficient for keeping air fresh in a finished garage primarily used for storage. For garages used as a laundry room, it's best to install the bathroom exhaust fan near the washer and dryer, to pull moist air out of the garage. Bathroom exhaust fans must be wired into the electrical system and can be installed into a wall or ceiling.
Install attic fan
A garage used as a workshop requires ventilation to protect a crafter from paint fumes or to maintain a level of comfort while working. For finished garages, a small attic fan known as a whole house fan is a good choice to vent a garage. The fan is installed in the ceiling and turned on as needed. A roof turbine vent over the garage is recommended for use with attic fans to allow heat and paint fumes to escape and not enter attic space over the rest of the house.
Kitchen range hood
An old or new kitchen range hood positioned over the work space in a garage provides both ventilation and lighting. Range hoods can be vented through exterior walls or through garage attics. Commercial range hoods have more powerful fans, but are known to be noisier.