If the goal is to stay cool without increasing your energy bills, you’ll likely count on your ceiling fan a lot this summer. A good approach is to operate a fan without AC until it gets excessively hot, then turn the fan off and try the air conditioner instead. This is a mistake! Having the ceiling fan and air conditioner together is the optimal way to maximize comfort and energy savings.
It may seem redundant to try two cooling methods simultaneously, but fans make your air conditioner more powerful. Consider these five tips to help you get more from your AC system this summer.
Install a Ceiling Fan
First off—if you don’t already have ceiling fans all over your home, look into installing a number of them. You should be able to switch out any light fixture in the middle of the room for a smooth, efficient and stylish ceiling fan.
Don't forget that ceiling fans work best when the blades sit 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 same amount.
As you might imagine, longer fans can push more air than smaller ones. Choose a 36- to 44-inch diameter fan for rooms up to 225 square feet and 52-inch fans for bigger rooms. You can also install multiple fans in a row to cool rooms longer than 18 feet.
Confirm the Fan’s Direction
Ceiling fans can move in both directions. Confirm yours is ready to spin counterclockwise in the summertime. This pushes air down to make the breeze feel more apparent.
If you’re not sure whether a fan is turning the right way, switch it on and sit exactly below it. If the breeze appears weak for how fast the blades are turning, you might need to change the direction.
Some fans have a remote control, in particular if they’re put in on a vaulted ceiling. Check for a button on the remote to change the direction. If your fan doesn’t possess a remote, run your hand along the motor housing for a reversing switch.
Ceiling fans can turn either way because forcing the air upward is useful for reducing heating expenses in the winter. So when the seasons change, adjust your fan to turn clockwise and run it on low to distribute warm air toward the ceiling back down to the living room without creating a breeze. This technique is very beneficial in stairwells and rooms with vaulted ceilings.
Adjust the Thermostat
You should change the thermostat to enjoy energy savings from using a ceiling fan in the summer. Don’t worry about feeling uncomfortable—the “wind chill” effect made by turning on a ceiling fan makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler. This principle, which can make winter cold unpleasant, is the trick to home comfort and energy savings in the summer.
If you generally keep your house around 75 degrees, try adjusting the thermostat to 77 or 78 degrees to compensate for the wind chill effect made by running a ceiling fan. Then, adjust your outfit to increase your comfort level even more. Dressing for the season enables you to improve comfort while reducing cooling costs.
Shut Off the Fans in Unusued Areas
It’s a common assumption that ceiling fans lower the temperature in the room. Sure, they make you feel cooler, but all they do is move air around. As a result, there’s not a good reason to keep a ceiling fan working in an unused room. Fans may cost pennies on the dollar to operate versus air conditioners, but every little bit counts, so turn off the fan if you’re the last person to leave the room.
See Your Energy Savings Grow
If you stick to the tips outlined above, you could observe a reduction in your air conditioning expenses for the rest of the summer. After all, you can save up to 3 percent on your cooling costs for each degree you raise the thermostat. And by using the wind chill effect formed by the ceiling fan, you can receive savings without sacrificing comfort.
Keep Cool with Help from Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning
Plainly, you shouldn’t underestimate the impact ceiling fans can have on your home comfort this summer! If you need air conditioning services at any time, check out Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning to fix your problem quickly. Our technicians can help your air conditioner work as proficiently as possible, ensuring it works along with your ceiling fans to keep your home and family comfortable for less. Call us today to request an appointment with the HVAC pros at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.