Helpful? 0

Tamarack Cape vent dampers

Hello all - I'm a bit intrigued by Tamarack cape dampers - I've searched here and found a couple of threads that include some mention of these units, as possible solutions to issues in specific applications (wood stove OAK, and HVAC duct). I wonder if anyone has any experience with this style of damper in a bath fan exhaust? Apparently they've been around for @ 5 years. Rated to 160 deg F but I have no idea how they would perform under extreme cold conditions (such as what this winter has brought us). Any insights or comments are greatly appreciated. Thanks....

Asked by Randy Toni
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 13:39


6 Answers

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I've never installed one, but Tamarack is a good company with a good reputation. As far as I know, their Cape dampers work as described.

Answered by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 14:44

Helpful? 0

they do recommend it for bathroom exhaust on their website

thanks for linking them up
i was just trying to find them a few day ago! nice timing :)

on another hand,
anyone ever discussed about this Broan product ? :

i've used it at my house
the floating ball and its receptacle are made out of EPS foam
the design is pretty cheap and could be improved much,
but i've paid something like 15$ locally for those

i wonder how would perfrom using "drape" damper right inside the wall
in conjunction with this broan foam unit .

Answered by Jin Kazama
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 16:10

Helpful? 1

I have a Cape on the exhaust side of my HRV; operational pix
here about a quarter of the way down. The flapper is basically
a piece of rip-stop nylon, and should do fine in cold but almost
certainly not suitable for hot gases. It has to be installed
correctly, with the attached seam along the bottom. It seals
up much more tightly than typical spring-flap types.


Answered by Hobbit _
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 16:26

Helpful? 0

I've been looking at some of the nicer (e.g. Seiho) vent caps recently (thanks to GBA advice in another thread) and debating whether or not to install a unit with built in damper (in addition to the plastic damper at the fan) vs one without (i.e. just rely on the plastic damper at the fan). I worry about dampers freezing in this crazy cold weather. Then I saw the cape dampers which (apparently) have very little impact on airflow, so my brain also went towards a combo approach - a new vent cap (hood / no damper) + a cape damper sitting in line just a couple inches inside the wall. I might gamble a few $ and test drive this setup.

I have no direct experience with the Broan ecovent units, but was also looking at these recently. From the reviews I've seen (taken with a grain of salt) they have been reported to be prone to freeze-up (more so in a bath fan install vs on a dryer vent, particularly where the bath fan CFM is a bit on the marginal side). And somewhat impossible to free up once they do freeze, due in part to the housing / shroud surrounding the ball. Jin - Do you run one on a bath fan and if so, have you had good luck with it?

Answered by Randy Toni
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 16:39
Edited Wed, 03/26/2014 - 16:45.

Helpful? 0

Hobbit - thanks for the feedback and the link - your project (documentation) is meticulous. I've seen a few folks take the time to do this, in various forums, and it always amazes me.

Answered by Randy Toni
Posted Wed, 03/26/2014 - 17:10

Helpful? 1

I've been running one on the bathroom fan for a few years ...
actually it is the second one ( replaced the first one this year )
On the first 2 years, we were ventilating everytime we were taking a shower, even during winter ..
until i found out that it was excessivly drying our house in winter time.
The first year during very cold nights, the unit froze shot due to freezing condensate between the foam ball and its receptacle. Hapened a few times..
So i ended up trying to srapy silicone on it ... unfortunately, EPS doesn't last long agaisnt volatiles :p
So it burned a bit, but never to stick close again.

Now that we stopped venting the bathroom during hard winter, never had any problems this winter.

I am pretty sure that doubling up on vent dampers should provide enhanced performance.

Answered by Jin Kazama
Posted Thu, 03/27/2014 - 10:18

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