If the idea is to keep cool without increasing your energy bills, you’ll likely count on your ceiling fan a lot this summer. A common approach is to use a fan without AC until it gets too hot, then flip the fan off and run the air conditioner instead. This is a mistake! Running the ceiling fan and air conditioner together is the best way to improve comfort and energy savings.
It can appear redundant to use two cooling methods at the same time, but fans make your air conditioner more productive. Use these five tips to help you get the maximum benefit from your air conditioning system this summer.
Install a Ceiling Fan
First—if you don’t already have ceiling fans in your home, consider installing a number of them. You should have the ability to change out any light fixture in the middle of the room for a smooth, efficient and eye-catching ceiling fan.
Don't forget that ceiling fans run best when the blades will be 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 should be at least eight-feet high, and rooms with vaulted ceilings will not benefit the way rooms with lower ceilings will.
As you might imagine, longer fans can move more air than shorter ones. Choose a 36- to 44-inch diameter fan for rooms as much as 225 square feet and 52-inch fans for deeper rooms. You can also set up multiple fans in a line to cool rooms longer than 18 feet.
Check the Fan’s Direction
Ceiling fans can run in both directions. Ensure yours is ready to spin counterclockwise during summer. This forces air back down to make the breeze feel more apparent.
If you’re not sure whether your fan is turning the right way, turn it on and stand right beneath it. If the breeze appears low for how fast the blades are turning, you potentially need to change the direction.
Some fans have a remote control, especially if they’re installed on a vaulted ceiling. Look for a button on the remote to reverse the direction. If your fan doesn’t use a remote, run your hand along the motor housing for a reversing switch.
Ceiling fans can turn either way because pushing the air upward is useful for cutting down heating bills in the winter. So when the seasons change, set your fan to spin clockwise and keep it on low to distribute warm air around the ceiling back toward the living space without generating a breeze. This method is especially effective in stairwells and rooms with vaulted ceilings.
Reset the Thermostat
You have to turn up the thermostat to fully appreciate energy savings from running a ceiling fan in the summer. Don’t worry about feeling uncomfortable—the “wind chill” effect created by using a ceiling fan makes the room feel up to 4 degrees cooler. This concept, which can make winter cold unpleasant, is the answer to home comfort and energy savings for the summer.
If you usually keep your house at 75 degrees, try readjusting the thermostat to 77 or 78 degrees to make up for the wind chill effect produced by using a ceiling fan. Then, switch up your outfit to improve your comfort level even more. Dressing for the season enables you to optimize comfort while reducing cooling costs.
Shut Off the Fans in Empty Areas
It’s a popular misconception that ceiling fans lower the temperature in a room. Sure, they make you feel cooler, but all they do is shift air around. As a result, there’s no reason to keep a ceiling fan on in an empty room. Fans might cost pennies on the dollar to use in contrast to air conditioners, but every little bit matters, so switch off the fan if you’re the last person to leave the room.
See Your Energy Savings Grow
If you adhere to the tips listed above, you should observe a drop in your air conditioning bills all summer long. After all, you can save nearly 3 percent on your cooling costs for every degree you raise the thermostat. And by enjoying the wind chill effect produced by the ceiling fan, you can experience savings without losing out on comfort.
Keep Cool with Help from Gordon's Service Experts
Truly, you shouldn’t underestimate the impact ceiling fans can have on your home comfort in summer! If you want air conditioning services sometime soon, turn to Gordon's Service Experts to resolve your problem quickly. Our technicians can help your air conditioner perform as effectively as possible, ensuring it works along with your ceiling fans to keep your home and family comfortable for less. Contact us today to arrange an appointment with the HVAC pros at Gordon's Service Experts.