Fan Speed Controllers: Solid State vs. Variacs (variable autotransformer)
Do your fans rattle and buzz? Then throw out your solid state variable speed controller. For $40 on ebay you can get a device called a Variac, short for variable autotransformer. Many people think there is something wrong with their centrifugal fans and replace them with more expensive fans that are marketed as quiet only to find out that when connected to their cheap speed control (pictured on the left above) the problem continues. To fix this issue a cheap Variac can be purchased and the rattling and buzzing of your fans will disappear. For a small grow tent that utilizes only 1 or 2 fans the Variac pictured on the right is sufficient and costs less than $40 if you shop for the best deal on ebay.