By Erik J. Martin.
Are you a fan of indoor climate comfort, extra light, and overhead elements that can add pizazz to your home’s design? If so, a new ceiling fan could be just the thing to top off a room and brighten a given living space.
Ceiling fans can instantly cool down an area during warmer months and, when the blades are set to operate clockwise, circulate warmer air during colder times. Especially in a room that lacks overhead lighting, a ceiling fan equipped with a light kit can shine down additional illumination. And if adorned with a stylish design that harmonizes with surrounding elements, a ceiling fan can enhance the aesthetic of the room it serves.
Most importantly, they serve as an easy way to cool off a room that’s too warm, working better in dry climates than human ones. They are less expensive and more efficient to run than air conditioners, thereby saving money on utility costs. They are also easy to maintain and turn on via a pull string or remote control or when wired to a wall switch.
On the downside, a ceiling fan won’t be enough to brighten an entire room, as many fans accommodate light kits that only serve one to three bulbs of various maximum wattage. So you’ll need additional artificial lighting sources, such as a table or floor lamps, to properly light the area, too.
Also, ceiling fans can be difficult to clean, especially if they are installed in high ceilings. The motor collects dirt, and there are a lot of small areas along with the blades and around the housing that can be tricky to clean. They can be noisy, too, unless you purchase a more expensive one designed for quieter operation. And as they get older and more used, the screws can loosen, the motor can become louder, and the fan doesn’t operate as efficiently.
If your room is less than 144 square feet, choose a ceiling fan with a 42-inch blade span; a 44- to 50-inch blade span is ideal for rooms sized 144 to 225 square feet, while a room up to 400 square feet is best paired with blades that exceed 50 inches.
If your ceiling height is 8 feet, select a low-profile ceiling fan; for ceilings 9 feet high or taller, you may need to install a ceiling fan with a down rod. If you have ceilings lower than 8 feet or a smaller type of room, a ceiling fan is not recommended; with the former, it may be a safety hazard that you accidentally come in contact with, and with the latter, a ceiling fan can make the room look even smaller.
Almost all types of ceiling fans can be installed in any room after considering the size of the room and the height of the ceiling, as you’ll need to determine the appropriate size of the blades to effectively circulate air in that room.
They work well in rooms with high ceilings and even sloped ceilings, so long as down rods are installed. If you are installing the fan on a sloped ceiling then make sure to include an angle kit with your purchase so that the fan hangs properly. Many people believe that installing the fan in the center of the room is the ideal place. But you want the fan installed where people gather most, such as over your bed in a bedroom and above the table in a kitchen.
It’s best to attach your ceiling fan to an electrical junction box on the ceiling versus installing an unsightly swag kit that essentially hangs an extension cord across your ceiling and walls to power the unit. DIYers with good experience handling electrical jobs can likely accomplish this project, although it’s recommended to hire a professional electrician for safety reasons.