Mall Ventilation: Portable Fans vs. Mobile Ventilation Unit

Posted by Ventry Solutions, Inc. on

Multiple portable fans on standby at huge mall in place of MVU or built-in smoke removal system

3 portable fans at one entrance cleared millions of cubic feet of smoke while 3 others at another entrance kept smoke from reaching other areas of the mall.

3 portable fans at one entrance cleared millions of cubic feet of smoke while 3 others at another entrance kept smoke from reaching other areas of the mall.

In the above photo, multiple Ventry® PPV Fans are positioned side-by-side to ventilate a huge shopping mall in the Seattle area. At the developer’s invitation, we conducted this experiment using six Ventry Fans to remove the smoke from this huge commercial structure.

Three fans were used at each of two different sets of doors, with the smoke exiting out of a third set of doors. In this way, the mall was successfully and thoroughly cleared of smoke in 8 minutes. Having ventilation fans at two different locations at once pressurized a portion of the mall where smoke had not yet gone and ventilated the other. Setup was easy, the smoke’s exit was controlled, the unaffected areas of the mall were untouched, and the smoke was cleared fast.

During ventilation, we stood at intersecting hallways in the mall and watched the smoke literally turn the corner and go toward the exit! The fans did a terrific job of clearing all smoke in a short time (8 minutes!) and absolutely no smoke remained in the rafters or side shops.

A brand new mobile ventilation unit was also demonstrated that day by the local fire department. It also took 8 minutes to clear the smoke; however, in contrast to the huge truck-mounted fan, the six Ventry Fans used...

  • cost a fraction of the mobile ventilation unit (less than 1/20th!);
  • pushed nearly 30,000 cfm with each of the six fans for much greater overall air volume;
  • took less time to set up and implement;
  • were able to pressurize and ventilate from multiple points simultaneously, preventing smoke from being blown into unaffected areas;
  • allowed for precise control of the smoke and moved it along a planned, predictable path; and
  • are easily stored on-site, easily maintained, and require little training.

After witnessing the performance of the portable, gas-powered Ventry Fans in relation to the expensive mobile ventilation unit, the mall developer was able to avoid purchasing a built-in smoke removal system or a large, expensive, truck-mounted blower. Instead, five Ventry Fans were purchased and kept on-site for smoke removal and positive pressure ventilation.

More photos from our 2006 mall ventilation experiment are below, in which Joan and James participated. This test was a valuable comparison and learning experience which we are happy to discuss. A few Ventry Fans saved the mall developer almost a million dollars and could do the same for you. Call 888-257-8967.

Side-by-side placement of PPV fans is recommended when using multiple fans.

We recommend side-by-side placement of multiple fans.

Close-up of two of the fans ventilating the mall

Close-up of two of the fans ventilating the mall

Mall developer, very pleased, watches smoke exit the mall without an expensive smoke removal system!

The mall developer was quite pleased with the steady flow of smoke OUT using half a dozen Ventry Fans.

Inside view of the mall we ventilated

Inside view of the mall

James and Joan with a truck-load of fans!

James and Joan with a truck-load of fans!


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