If your idea is to keep cool without spiking your energy bills, you’ll certainly depend on your ceiling fan a lot this summer. A common strategy is to run a fan without AC until it gets extremely hot, then shut the fan off and run the air conditioner when you really need it. This is a mistake! Operating the ceiling fan and air conditioner together is a great way to optimize comfort and energy savings.
It may feel redundant to use two cooling methods at once, but fans make your air conditioner more efficient. Try these five tips to help you get more from your AC system this summer.
Install a Ceiling Fan
First—if you don’t already have ceiling fans throughout your home, look into installing a number of them. You should have the ability to swap out any light fixture in the center of the room for a smooth, effective and fashionable ceiling fan.
Don't forget that ceiling fans work best when the blades sit seven to nine feet above the floor, 10 to 12 inches from the ceiling, and at least 18 inches from the walls. This means your ceilings must be at the least eight-feet high, and rooms with vaulted ceilings might not benefit as much.
As you might imagine, longer fans can move more air than smaller ones. Go for a 36- to 44-inch diameter fan for rooms up to 225 square feet and 52-inch fans for larger rooms. You can also put in multiple fans in a line to cool rooms longer than 18 feet.
Determine the Fan’s Direction
Ceiling fans can spin in both directions. Ensure yours is ready to spin counterclockwise during the summer. This pushes air back down to make the breeze appear more prominent.
If you’re unsure whether your fan is turning the right way, flip it on and sit exactly underneath it. If the breeze appears weak for how quickly the blades are rotating, you potentially need to reverse the direction.
Some fans have a remote control, usually if they’re fitted on a vaulted ceiling. Check for a button on the remote to switch the direction. If your fan doesn’t possess a remote, feel around the motor housing for a reversing switch.
Ceiling fans can rotate in both directions because driving the air upward is useful for lowering heating bills in the winter. So when the seasons change, set your fan to rotate clockwise and run it on low to circulate warm air around the ceiling back down to the living room without creating a breeze. This technique is especially beneficial in stairwells and rooms with vaulted ceilings.
Adjust the Thermostat
You need to adjust the thermostat to make the most of energy savings from running a ceiling fan in the summer. Don’t concern yourself with feeling uncomfortable—the “wind chill” effect made by using a ceiling fan makes the room seem about 4 degrees cooler. This principle, which can make winter cold unpleasant, is the answer to home comfort and energy savings in the summer.
If you usually keep your house around 75 degrees, consider adjusting the thermostat to 77 or 78 degrees to compensate for the wind chill effect created by running a ceiling fan. Then, switch up your outfit to boost your comfort level even more. Dressing for the season allows you to maximize comfort while lowering cooling costs.
Switch Off the Fans in Unoccupied Areas
It’s a widespread assumption that ceiling fans lower the temperature in the room. Yes, they make you feel cooler, but all they do is move air around. As a result, there’s not a good reason to keep a ceiling fan moving in an unoccupied room. Fans might cost pennies on the dollar to run versus air conditioners, but every little bit matters, so shut off the fan if you’re the last person to leave the room.
Watch Your Energy Savings Grow
If you stick to the tips detailed above, you should observe a drop in your air conditioning costs all summer long. After all, you can save up to 3 percent on your cooling costs for each degree you adjust the thermostat. And by using the wind chill effect produced by the ceiling fan, you can receive savings without losing out on comfort.
Keep Cool with Help from Roland J. Down Service Experts
Clearly, you shouldn’t undervalue the impact ceiling fans can have on your home comfort in summer! If you want air conditioning services sometime soon, choose Roland J. Down Service Experts to resolve your problem quickly. Our technicians can help your air conditioner work as proficiently as possible, ensuring it works in tandem with your ceiling fans to keep your home and family comfortable for less. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with the HVAC pros at Roland J. Down Service Experts .