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Breathing Easy: The Importance of an Industrial Ventilation System

Industrial Manufacturing 1

Industrial manufacturing generates both excess heat and pollution that poses a threat to the environment, negatively impacts equipment, causes uncomfortable working conditions, and significantly reduces the efficiency and safety of the production process. Airtight Solutions helps mitigate the damaging effects of high temperatures and pollutants associated with industrial equipment used by consulting, designing, supplying, and installing ventilation and air pollution control systems.

What is Industrial Roof Ventilation?

Industrial ceiling ventilation refers to a variety of air-moving devices in industrial/manufacturing environments that improve indoor air quality while maintaining comfortable and safe working environments for employees.

These systems are often installed on or under the roof of a workplace and remove excess heat, moisture, fumes and other pollutants using exhaust fans, supply fans, mixing fans, HVAC systems and ventilation hoods. The systems can either be simple or complex:

  • Simple: Vents along the apex of the roof that allow warm air to rise and escape, and unpowered “whirlybird” exhaust vents that rely on outside winds to rotate air out of the building.
  • Complex: Mechanical and electrical powered fan systems, often including filtration systems, that are designed to deal with nuisance fumes, high temperatures, moisture and humidity.

Building size, type of equipment used, and specific workplace ventilation requirements implemented at both the state and local level are all factors to consider when determining the type of industrial ceiling ventilation system needed in a given environment.

Top Benefits of an Industrial Roof Exhaust System

An appropriately sized and installed industrial roof exhaust system provides the following benefits:

  • Reduces airborne moisture such as steam and humidity, preventing machine rust and corrosion, electrical hazards, mold growth, slip and fall accidents, and equipment failure.
  • Removes harmful fumes, enhancing employee safety in the workplace.
  • Improves machine functionality and efficiency by reducing rust and corrosion and reducing maintenance needs.
  • Lowers heat in working and storage areas, improving employee safety, comfort, and productivity, and protecting temperature-sensitive products.
  • Enhances energy efficiency by reducing excess heat, humidity, and fumes, reducing a building’s overall thermal load.

Custom Ventilation Solutions from Airtight

For refined, fan-driven ventilation systems, Airtight engineers calculate the volume of a given workspace (the factory’s floor area multiplied by its height). If a manufacturer is looking for a general system to simply remove stale air or a low concentration of dust, Airtight engineers can take the factory volume and inflict what is known in the industry as an air change rate on the space.

Typical jobs can equate to roughly five air changes per hour, which in practical terms means that the fans cycle out the entire volume of air in the factory once every twelve minutes. More intensive jobs (for example, in factories where welding operations are conducted) could receive up to ten air changes per hour.

To ensure that the drawn out, dusty air can be replaced, large access doors can simply be left open or low level louvers can be installed in the sides of the building so that the directional airflow is shared evenly across the space. If the fumes generated during a manufacturing process are harmful and violate Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) requirements, filtration devices may be necessary. In those cases, roof-mounted exhaust pipes can be ducted to a device which collects harmful fumes and discharges them as a single stack (a vertical duct that provides fresh air and removes stale air).

What Is An Extractor Fan?

Industrial extractor fans are ventilation systems that remove a predefined volume of air per hour from workspaces contaminated by fumes, smoke, dust and excess heat. Industrial extractor fans not only maintain a safe working environment for employees, but also decrease the risk of fires or explosions that may occur from the accumulation of flammable gasses and particulates.

Usually powered by an electric motor, industrial extractor fans come in various sizes and with various capabilities, and can include ducting systems that can be specified to meet the specific ventilation requirements of clients.

Industrial Extractor Fan Design

Industrial extractor fans come in a variety of sizes and capacities, and are often installed in a variety of locations (near machinery, in restrooms, or in areas where fumes are generated). The fan’s size and capacity will depend on how much air and what type of contaminants need to be removed.

At a project’s inception, Airtight engineers have a brief discussion with the client about the processes carried out by/in their facility. Next, engineers determine how many workers occupy a given building and if there are vehicles which emit hydrocarbons (like front loaders with diesel engines). Various other factors might be considered, including whether the building in question already exists or is yet to be constructed (in these cases, engineers would request proposed building plans/drawings). Also taken into account are local and state legislative requirements like those put forth by the EPA and the Occupational Health and Safety Act of 2006 (formerly OHS, now WHS). Ultimately, customers don’t need to know all of the factors that go into sizing a fan – Airtight experts are available to guide them.

A simple Airtight project might involve developing a solution for a warehouse where high temperatures caused by climatic conditions risk damaging the quality of the product stored inside. In such an instance, the design team might recommend roof vents, which can be installed at the time of the building’s construction. More complex problem sets involve workspaces with people in them, where manufacturing processes require tailored ventilation systems to deal with the fumes, dust, steam, humidity, and high temperatures produced by the equipment used. 

Basic design factors taken into account by Airtight engineers range from general experience (using previous installations as a guideline) and standard practice, to EPA and Occupational Health and Safety requirements.

The Airtight Difference

With over 20 years of industry experience, the Airtight engineering teams in Australia and New Zealand can provide customized, reliable and economical solutions for unique needs. Airtight’s solutions are appropriate for use in a broad range of applications and industries. Customers can choose from options ranging between 300m3/hr and 180,000m3/hr (meters cubed per hour), with up to a 10kPa (Kilopascal) pressure capability. Built to last and designed to handle dusty, hot air with minimal wear and tear, Airtight’s industrial heat ventilation solutions are clean, quiet, highly efficient and save customers running costs.


Airtight Solutions assists customers from various industries in developing solutions that are uniquely tailored to combat excess heat and pollution. If you need assistance with any of your industrial heat extraction projects, do not hesitate to reach out to one of our knowledgeable team members at 1800 424 784 or visit

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