Ceiling fans cool you in the summer and warm you in the winter, all for just pennies a day. They are extremely efficient: even at high speeds they use less energy than a 75-watt light bulb. Actually, fans save energy, with cooling costs alone lowered as much as 40 percent, according to a study by Florida Power and Light. In the summer, fans create a wind chill effect that makes a temperature of 78°– 80°F feel like 72°F. So by using them you can set your thermostat higher. On most fans, the summer setting is a counter-clockwise rotation, viewed from below. In the winter, fans run in reverse (clockwise), reclaiming lost heat from the ceiling. They provide an even, comfortable temperature by moving hot air back down to the living areas below. Even though ceiling fans have been around for more than a century, they are more popular today than ever. If you are planning a purchase, use these helpful tips to make a better buy.
When shopping for a ceiling fan, you may find it difficult to determine why one costs $50 and another $500. At first glance there may appear to be no difference. Only when you begin to examine them closely, armed with the information that follows, will you be able to recognize the qualities that will assure years and years of beauty and comfort. Inexpensive fans may look good when new, and they may even run well at first. After continued use, however, they will become noisy; or they will warp, wobble or quickly wear out. Selecting a proper ceiling fan should be done as carefully as picking a piece of fine furniture.
The reason poorly made fans wobble is because of cheap blade materials, rotors and/or improper sealing processes are used. Blade brackets should have exact degrees of pitch or angles, while blades should be matched in carefully weighed and balanced sets.
Those that do wear out have undergone poor manufacturing techniques or inadequate testing and inspection. Other problems that promote wear and tear are incorrectly matched motor size and blade pitch. Defective motor windings can cause electrical shorts. And poorly installed on/off pull chains can be pulled out of the housing.
When searching for a ceiling please look for these features which are all found in one of our top fan manufacturers, Craftmade.
- A heavy duty motor for smooth, quiet performance
- A 16 pole motor with 2,000+ feet of copper windings for greater efficiency and smoother performance
- Multiple capacitors to control starting and running
- Die-cast aluminum rotors for cool running
- Stamped steel or die-cast zinc housing
- Heavy duty bearings that never need oiling because they are permanently lubricated
- 3-speed reversible switching for summer and winter
- 12°, 14° or 16° blade pitch which greatly increases air flow
- Factory-installed gaskets to reduce noise and vibration.