A Cool Breeze

Last week was Earth Day and it reminded me about the need for a ceiling fan in my living room. I already have one in several other rooms in the house.

Ceiling fans are a very energy efficient way to cool your home. They work by increasing air movement and helping your body lose heat. Installing fans can also drastically reduce your air conditioning costs, since they consume approximately half as much electricity as air conditioners. Turning your fan on and your air conditioner down a few degrees will result in an overall cost savings.

So if you live in a hot climate and don’t own one you should ask yourself why.Unfortunately this is not a picture of my living room.

But with all the designs and options available today its difficult to choose one that adds to your room decor, matches nicely with the materials, design elements and colours.

An inexpensive ceiling fan can run as little as $40. A moderate price fan will set you back about $100 to $200, but you can also spend over a $1,000 without really trying too hard!

The process can be daunting. Here are some tips:

Select the size – Ceiling fans come in sizes from 29 to 54 inches, with 52-inches being the most common. To determine the appropriate size for your room, you’ll need to know the square footage of your room.

Select the features: Many fans come with a variety of options to choose from:

Lighting: might be beneficial if you don’t have a sufficient light source in the room. But be aware that some open fixtures may cause a strobe affect when the fan is in motion.

Blades: that can be reversed for a dark/light wood look variation, various colours and themes. The number of blades doesn’t affect performance significantly, except that larger blades will increase air circulation. The fans can also be on a lower speed and therefore quieter.

Downrods: needed for high or sloped ceilings.

For safety reasons, the fan blades must be a minimum of 7′ above the floor and the tips of the blades must be at least 18″ from the wall to provide sufficient clearance for the blades.

From my own experience ceiling fans need a significant clearance above and around them in order to feel any air flow.

Controls: hand held remotes or wall mounted face plates that control speed and light. Alternatively you can just use the pull chains.

Here is the outstanding uni-blade called the Enigma (I wonder why?) by Fanimation:

Unstable for my liking besides setting you back $1K!

The double blade fan called Involution appears to spiral inward as well as out:

You can view it in motion on the Fanimation site.

The triple blade Torto’s standard 52″ sweep claims it pushes air at an angle.

Definitely an innovative concept.

The Westwind Classic Red is strong splash of colour.

I wouldn’t want it on my ceiling, but there are certainly spaces that it would suit.

Then of course there are those that go over the top:

When all is said and done the idea is to get a cool breeze.

Photos courtesy: Fanimation, Casablanca, Craftmade and Hunter

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