The One Thing You Need to Do To Prepare Your Ceiling Fans for Summer

Laurey W. Glenn
This simple trick can lower the temperature on your porch or in your room by four degrees.

Did you know that your ceiling fan is designed to rotate in different directions for summer and winter. Look for a small switch next to the motor of your ceiling fan that directs your blades to run either clockwise or counterclockwise.

Counterclockwise is the correct rotation for summer.

Although the direction can vary by some manufacturers, check to make sure you have your fan set to the accurate warm weather rotation by standing below it. You should immediately feel a downward breeze blowing on you. According to Consumer Reports, a ceiling fan with the blades rotating counterclockwise for summer can make a room feel 4 degrees cooler. And, Energy Star says that you save 3 to 5 percent on air conditioning costs for each degree you raise your thermostat. Keep in mind that a ceiling fan makes you feel cooler, not your room, to save energy and cost turn off the fans when you leave the room. Memphis, Tennessee-based Hunter Fans estimate that ceiling fans can cut summer power bills by 47%.

Clockwise is the correct rotation for winter.

The fan blades should send air upward to disrupt the warm air that collects near the ceiling and disperse it downward. This is particularly effective in rooms with high or vaulted ceilings and rooms with stoves or fireplaces.

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More Cool Ceiling Fan Facts

  • Money Doesn't Matter Consumer Reports found that a more expensive fan doesn’t generally improve fan performance.
  • Less Blades, More Air Our friends at Hunter Fans tell us that generally speaking, the fewer blades a fan has, the more air it moves. 5 bladed fans have become the norm from an aesthetic standpoint, but a 3 or 4 bladed fan with equal motor power will move more air.
  • Check Airflow Metrics Look out for a higher number of cubic feet per minute on the fan’s box – a higher number means more more air movement, but with more airflow you also get more noise.
  • Smooth Sailing Fans with large and textured blades make more noise than those with smooth blades.
  • Size Accordingly 52-inch blade fans work best for rooms that are 225 – 400 square feet. 42 to 44 inch models work better in rooms that are 144 – 225 square feet.
  • Clean Regularly Dust and dirt can slow down the blades. Consumer Reports recommends waxing the blades with car wax to keep dust from sticking.Hunter Fans recommends cleaning with a pillow case to elimnate the dreaded floating dust. Wrap the blade inside of the pillowcase and slowly move it away from the fan.
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