Why You NEED a Roof Vent and Which One to Choose

In this short review I am going to be discussing the importance of having a roof vent installed in rv or van, and comparing the two leading premium roof vent manufacturers mid levels models. I’ll keep it brief, but you should definitely check out the two videos in the bottom of this article that go into more depth.

Roof vents are extremely important to keep air flowing through your living space, and could even save your life. The most obvious use is keeping air circulating when it’s hot outside. Living in what is basically a tin can or fiberglass oven, your van or rv can heat up to extreme temperatures very fast.  When cooking in a small space the heat and humidity can quickly lead to unpleasant air quality and creating a breeding ground for harmful mold in your living space. Heat rises and having a roof vent is the easiest way to clear out hot and humid air.


Ok so now know how important it to have a roof vent installed. How do we choose which one to get? There are two main manufactures, and only one them is going to win my seal of approval. Since I’ve owned both the Maxx Air Fan 5100K and the Fantastic Fan 1200 I will be comparing these two models based on my hands on experience. I’ve also had the Ventline Roof Fan installed in my astro, but quickly found out that its very noisy and does not move much air. I suggest you don’t waste your money, and go for one of the full size 12×12 fans I am reviewing. Let’s check out the features and a quick pros and cons list between the two:

Maxx Air Fan 5100K:

  • Built in Rain Shield (use while raining)
  • Adjustable Thermostat
  • In and Out Fan Movement
  • 10 speeds
  • Can leave open while Driving

Fantastic Fan 1200:

  • Requires very bulky rain shield to use while raining
  • Must buy more expensive model for thermostat
  • Must buy more expensive model for In and Out
  • 3 Speeds
  • Must close while driving unless you buy Rain Sheild


To me there in no way around it, the Maxx Air fan is the clear winner.

I love the built in rain shield and strong design. This means I never have to worry about closing it or having a flooded van. The adjustable thermostat is great because I can turn it on at night and not have to wake up from extreme heat to turn it on. I can also keep my things cool while away from the van so the air is nice and crisp when I get back. The 10 speeds is kind of gimmicky, I could do with only three. But the Maxx Air is more quiet and powerful than the Fantastic fan. If I went with the Fantastic Fan I would have spend the extra money on something like This Rain Shield which is HUGE and bulky and looks ridiculous on a van. I’d also have to pay more than the Maxx Air just to get the reverse and thermostat I have grown to love.

In short, buy the maxx air fan. It’s cheaper and better. Check out this video I made showing how I installed two max air fans to work together in the van I built out for my girlfriend and I. Ps here is a short list of things you’ll need to install your new roof vent (plus a drill and saw).


  1. Great article Jed! I agree that the Maxx Air Fan is the clear winner. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thanks. In places like Texas you should worry about VENTILATION before insulation, as by my experience the van is going to collect heat no matter the I sulation, and vacating that hot air is fast with the right fan, or fans in my case!

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