Air conditioning is one of the biggest allies in the war against hot temperatures, and it works hard to cool your home. Doing what you can to help your AC can help preserve its longevity and keep your electricity costs as low as possible. Ceiling fans are certainly beneficial, but it is important to ensure that you are using them in the correct way to get the most benefit for your AC and your home’s overall temperature.
The Workings of a Ceiling Fan
When you are running a ceiling fan, you are benefiting from the wind chill effect. When used along with an AC, it helps to bring cool air down to where the people are. It also circulates this cool air throughout the room so that you get a cooler room without your air conditioner having to work any harder.
Heat does rise and this is also true when you are using your air conditioning. When you add a ceiling fan to the mix, it helps to reduce how much of the hot air is able to accumulate near the ceiling in your rooms. This provides a natural reduction in the room’s temperature.
Humidity levels also benefit from a ceiling fan. The blades on the fan help to evaporate moisture so that the room is more comfortable and cooler. This will also make it easier to breathe for anyone in your home who has asthma or allergies triggered by stagnant air.
How Ceiling Fans Help With Air Conditioning
Ceiling fans cannot lower room temperature like air conditioning does. However, they do help to provide a cool breeze that your AC cannot. Because ceiling fans help the AC, they also help to reduce energy costs as your AC unit is able to run more efficiently.
Each room will have a more even distribution of cool air so that it is more comfortable. This also allows you to have cooler rooms in areas where you are spending most of your time while leaving other rooms a little warmer. You can actually turn the thermostat up a few degrees while still maintaining a cool and comfortable space where it is needed the most.
The Direction Your Ceiling Fan Should Spin
Your ceiling fan needs to be moving in the proper direction to provide the most benefit when working with your AC. Since you want the air to blow directly down, make sure that it is moving in a counterclockwise direction. When it is moving properly, you will be able to feel the breeze coming from the fan. If the breeze is only slightly present, see if a faster speed helps.
You can adjust the direction your ceiling fan spins by yourself as it does not require any mechanical knowledge. Use the following steps to change your ceiling fan direction for the summer. Turn your fan off, making sure the blades stop completely. Clear away any obstacles under your fan, and place a sturdy ladder. Find the switch which is usually located near the motor on the fan. For the summer months, turn a horizontal switch to the right and a vertical switch down. Turn your fan on to make sure that it is spinning in the proper direction.
Ceiling Fan Types
There are different types of ceiling fans. The best one will depend on your air circulation needs. A standard ceiling fan is what you normally see in a home. There is usually a small distance between it and the ceiling. This allows for solid air circulation. Homes with vaulted ceilings may have ceiling fans that extend farther down from the ceiling, making them easier to reach and able to effectively cool your space.
If your ceilings are on the lower side, you might consider a flush-mount ceiling fan. These are usually installed up to the ceiling so that you have more head space. However, they are less effective when it comes to air circulation compared to a standard ceiling fan.
Benefits of Ceiling Fans and AC
The savings on your utility bill is the biggest benefit of using a ceiling fan with your AC. While estimates vary, the savings can be anywhere from 8% to 40% when you use both of these simultaneously. The air quality in your home can also benefit from using ceiling fans. They help to reduce allergens and dust by circulating the air. Your home will be more comfortable because the level of coolness will be easier to maintain.
Tips to Using Your AC and Ceiling Fans Together
You will be running your AC constantly on warm days to keep your home at the desired temperature. However, the same is not true for your ceiling fans. Ideally, you only want to run a ceiling fan in a room when you are in it. When you leave a room, turn off the fan and the lights to help keep it cool until someone enters again.
You want to make sure that the ceiling fan is in the proper place to get the most benefit. The ceiling should be at least 8 feet high for safety reasons. It is best to have a professional install it so that you know it is done properly.
Make sure to keep your ceiling fan clean. You can wipe off the blades about once a month to prevent debris and dirt from accumulating. This is especially important for those with asthma and allergies since the dust could aggravate your symptoms. There are lots of tools on the market that make cleaning your ceiling fan easier and often without the use of a ladder.
You want to make sure that your ceiling fan is the right size to handle your room. A 42-inch fan is adequate for rooms as big as 144 square feet. A 44-inch fan is necessary for rooms of 225 square feet. Look at a 54-inch fan for rooms that are 400 square feet. You will need more than one fan for any rooms that exceed 400 square feet.
Are Portable Fans and Ceiling Fans the Same?
Both types of fans will do essentially the same thing when combined with AC. However, ceiling fans can work a bit better since they are above you and are usually centrally located in a room. Ceiling fans also tend to be quieter when they are working.
When in a pinch, you can you a portable fan. Just make sure to have it facing you. You might also want to keep it on the low or medium setting to reduce noise. If you do need to use a portable fan until you can get a ceiling fan installed, a basic box fan is ideal since you can easily move it to whatever room you are in and place it anywhere the cord reaches. Portable fans can be dangerous for homes with small children and pets. Children can be injured by placing their fingers inside the fan.
Serving Gilbert, AZ area and the surrounding areas, we offer a complete line of services including HVAC, plumbing, and indoor air quality solutions. Additionally, we offer commercial services. Contact A/C Doctors today to find out more about any of the services we offer.