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Installing fan into theater cabinet but fans become weak after door closes, need advice!


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Initial post: May 5, 2012 8:42:28 PM PDT
Wendy N says:
I recently purchased some plastic fans that came with an adapter to help cool and vent my theater cabinet. The cabinet door has a glass portion to see through it. I had help cutting a hole through the side of the cabinet and mounting the fan to blow inward. The problem is, the fan blows pretty well when the door is open but seems to slow down considerable when the door is closed. It barely moves any air or does any cooling and I am bewildered by this. Does anyone know how to fix this?

In reply to an earlier post on May 6, 2012 8:28:06 AM PDT
B. Bogar says:
I would reverse the fan to create an "exhaust." All Computers and laptops have the fans "pulling" the hot air out of the case and that is what you will want to do with your cabinet. I'm sure your components (at least the receiver/amp) has a fan built-in so sucking the hot air away from the circuitry board so you will want to get that hot air out of your cabinet.

Posted on May 6, 2012 12:12:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 6, 2012 12:18:26 PM PDT
AM56 says:
I pull cooler air from the bottom of my cabinet, up across gear and to exit fan on upper backside of cabinet. Fans slow down when there is no exhaust vent..... no where for air to go.

Posted on May 12, 2012 9:11:03 PM PDT
odycee says:
When door is closed the pressure in the cabinet is higher than outside cabinet thus it takes more strength for the fan to force it inward. I'd cut TWO holes, one at BOTTOM to force COOL air from outside into cabinet and the other at TOP reverse with warm air blow outward. This setup will create equal AIR pressure and equililium thus your cabinet will flow regardless when door is close or open.

35 years later I still can remember my Chemistry HS class P1V1=P2V2, Boyle's law I believe. When you close the door, pressure inside cabinet increases since the volume of cabinet is less than outside air causes your fan to slow down. Drill another hole will equalize the pressure.

Posted on Jun 19, 2012 8:19:55 AM PDT
Consumer says:
Or, put another way, air in must equal air out for this setup to work. It'll require two openings.

Posted on Jun 22, 2012 4:11:45 PM PDT
It is best to use a fan to extract warm air from the top of the cabinet,
and the opening(s) available for cool air to enter
should be at least 2 times the size of the hole(s) for the exhaust.

Posted on Jun 27, 2012 12:58:29 PM PDT
RKEM says:
The advantage of having the fan blow in cool air rather than extracting hot air is that your fan will last longer in the cooler airstream, although depending on how hot your air is, this is probably less of a concern than it would be on a higher heat application like a CPU cooler.
Letting convection work for you also helps, meaning, regardless of where you put the fan, have cooler air enter down low and warm air exit higher in the cabinet.
I have a multi-shelf cabinet and usually drill holes in the shelf where my receiver sits, lined up with where the heatsinks are vented, to help it stay cool.

The bigger your exhaust (or intake) holes the better, so there will be less resistance for your fan to overcome.

If you are averse to cutting or drilling more holes: adding little bumpers to the backside of the door to maintain a small gap around the edge of the door, even when it is closed, would help, or if you have multiple fans as stated in your first sentence you could turn one of them around so one is blowing in and the other out.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 8, 2012 3:22:27 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 8, 2012 3:31:16 PM PDT
Another heat related concern. I would plunge it out. Call a local plumber or save money by using a handyman.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 20, 2012 11:24:27 PM PDT
Why is it so bewildering? When the door is closed, you have effectively created a closed container except for the fan opening. Take an empty plastic bottle, put your mouth over the opening and blow: how much air can you force into the bottle? Now cut a hole in the bottom of the bottle, and try again. Will it be easier to blow air? You want to create air flow through the cabinet. So if the door will be closed, make some holes elsewhere. And it will be better to have the fan reversed so that it blows air out of the cabinet and air gets sucked in through the holes you created.

Posted on Sep 30, 2012 5:27:23 AM PDT
Brett Rigby says:
Always wondered if a laptop cooling fan can be used to cool components. Any ideas out there?
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Discussion in:  Home Theater forum
Participants:  10
Total posts:  10
Initial post:  May 5, 2012
Latest post:  Sep 30, 2012

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