With the summer heat just around the corner it pays to begin thinking about all the ways you can help your AC work at peak efficiency—and in turn, reduce your utility bill. One way to do this is to install ceiling fans to help keep the air circulating in your home.
As you may know, the electric ceiling fan was developed by German immigrant Philip Diehl in the 1880s. The ceiling fan’s relative popularity has waxed and waned in the decades since, but more and more people are now recognizing the benefits of utilizing them. This explains why the home ceiling fan market is projected to be a $445 million industry by 2021, up from $385 million in 2015.
Ceiling Fans in Summer
One thing people often neglect to think about is how to maximize the benefit of ceiling fans. As a general rule, in the summertime you’ll want to set the blades to rotate counter-clockwise, which pushes cooler air downward and creates a “wind-chill effect.” Using a ceiling fan in this manner allows you to raise the setting on your thermostat four degrees without sacrificing comfort.
Ceiling Fans in Winter
By the same token, you can set the blades to turn clockwise during cold weather months. Pulling air upward displaces the warmer air (warm air rises) and forces it back down, making the room feel warmer. Again, this will allow you to adjust (lower) the temperature on your thermostat without sacrificing comfort.
Adjusting the Direction of Your Ceiling Fans
Many of today’s new ceiling fans are operated by remote control or controls on the wall, which makes changing the direction of the blades as simple as pushing a button or flicking a switch. On older ceiling fans, you will find a switch on the fan housing that allows you to change the direction. Naturally, you’ll want to make the change while the fan is off.
Turn Off Your Ceiling Fans When You Leave Home
Another time you’ll want to make sure your ceiling fans are off is when you’re away from home. Ceiling fans can help you feel cooler (or warmer) but don’t actually change the temperature in your home, so keeping them on while you’re away is a waste of money.
Unfortunately, most ceiling fans aren’t like Wi-Fi thermostats, which allow you to remotely monitor and adjust the temperature in your home; instead you’ll have to turn them off room-by-room. So make it part of your routine to turn off the lights and your ceiling fans when you leave home.
ENERGY STAR’s Most Efficient Ceiling Fans
If you’re in the market for new fans, you may want to consult ENERGY STAR’s list of most efficient ceiling fans for 2018.
Keep in mind that “ceiling fans are only appropriate in rooms with ceilings at least eight feet high,” according to energy.gov. “Fans work best when the blades are 7 to 9 feet above the floor and 10 to 12 inches below the ceiling [and] should be installed so their blades are no closer than 8 inches from the ceiling and 18 inches from the walls.”
As for fan size, energy.gov goes on to note that “a 36- or 44-inch diameter fan will cool rooms up to 225 square feet, while fans that are 52 inches or more should be used in larger rooms. Multiple fans work best in rooms longer than 18 feet.”
If you have any questions about ceiling fans or your HVAC system, contact us online or call us at (615) 469-5965. At Jewell Mechanical, we work hard to bring you optimal cooling and heating solutions for your home. We provide HVAC services for Nashville and the majority of Middle Tennessee.