A Simple Guide for Selecting the Right Ceiling Fan

Do you need to replace a ceiling fan somewhere in your home? Are you looking to add energy-efficient cooling power to a new space in your home? There are lots of reasons to install a new ceiling fan, and arguably the most important part of your installation process is choosing the right fan for your purposes. However, how do you know what fan is right for your purposes? There are hundreds, if not thousands of different fan models on the market today, so how do you even know where to begin?

This blog will take the mystery out of choosing the right fan and help you make an informed choice about what fan is the best for your home.

Find One That Looks Good

Where should you start? Simple: find one that you really like the look of. Fans are a critical part of a room’s aesthetic qualities, and therefore you want one that will play the right part in a room. Do you want to completely redefine a space with an edgy, out-there style? There are a ton of fans out there that offer unique designs that will unquestionably stand out. Looking for something to just complement a space without standing out? There are plenty of perfectly functional, plain fans to choose from as well (and many of them also have a number of other great features that make them highly functional too).

Select the Right Fan Size

The next step is to choose a fan that is the right size for your needs. Small rooms will not need a large fan, and likewise a large room won’t get all that much benefit from a small model. It’s important to find the right balance.

The American Lighting Association has created the following guidelines for how big of a fan to buy depending on the size of the room it will be servicing:

  • Less than 75 square feet: 36-inch diameter or smaller
  • 75 to 144 square feet: 36 to 42-inch diameter
  • 145 to 224 square feet: 44 to 50-inch diameter
  • 225 to 400 square feet: 50 to 54-inch diameter
  • Larger than 400 square feet: 60-inch diameter or larger

Choose the Right Number of Blades

The number of blades a fan has isn’t a crucial part of selecting a fan, but you should still give it some thought. Generally, the more blades a fan has, the more air it will move. However, fan blade pitch will also have a lot to do with how much air a fan moves. Likewise, a fan with more blades will typically also require more energy to spin (though the difference between, say, a 3-blade and a 5-blade fan will be extremely small and you probably won’t even notice it on your energy bill). However, if you’re looking for more cooling performance, we recommend a higher number of blades. If you’re looking more for an aesthetic piece with some functionality, lower numbers of blades may do the job perfectly.

Select the Proper Height

A ceiling fan that is too high won’t provide enough cooling power. A fan that is too low will create head clearance issues. Choosing the proper height is easily one of the most important choices for your room. Fans installed in rooms with sloped ceilings will need to hang lower in order to provide clearance for the blades. Therefore, it’s important to measure your room and choose accordingly.

The manufacturer-supplied hanging rod will do the trick for most rooms with average ceiling heights of around eight to ten feet. However, bedrooms and spaces with lower ceilings may want as short of a rod as possible to keep the fan as far away from interference as it can be. Likewise, a fan in a room with extremely high ceilings may want a much longer rod. Rods up to six feet in length are generally pretty common, but you may be able to purchase a longer one if you’re putting a fan in a room with vaulted ceilings.

Plan Your Electrical Connection

Finally, you’ll want to consider how you’re going to connect your fan to your electrical system. Ideally, fans should be placed in spaces that have attic access above them. However, this isn’t always possible (and it certainly isn’t required). Figure out where you’re going to place the switches and controls for your fan. Figure out if you wish to operate it with pull chains or if you’ll want a remote to control things like speed or the light fixture. Finally, plan where you’ll be tapping into your electrical supply to make your fan work properly. All of these things may influence where you place your fan and what fan you buy.

Get help with your ceiling fan installation from the pros at Lightning Bug Electric! Call us at (404) 471-3847 today.