- 1 How Does An Electric Fan Actually Work?
- 1.1 The Motor – A Buying Guide
- 1.2 Blades – A Buying Guide
- 1.3 How To Pick The Right Kind of Fan?
- 1.4 What Does An Electric Fan Do?
- 1.5 What Will Cool the Air Inside a Home?
- 1.6 Is a Dehumidifier a Good Option?
We have produced an electric fans guide for buyers for one very specific reason. The reason for that is confusion. I know when I first started to look at finding ways of cooling there were a bewildering set of options There were just so many types that it was actually hard to know which were the best to go for.
Any type of electrical fan primarily serves one single purpose. That purpose is to circulate the air in a space, which keeps it moving. That creates a fresh breeze and helps cool the air and also reduce the humidity in the air. In some cases they also offer ventilation in areas where fumes or gas may be. However their prime purpose is to help cool down the home, basement, roof space, office or building.
How Does An Electric Fan Actually Work?
Before we look at the many different types of fans and the best places to use them, it is worth a couple of minutes of your time to understand how they work. That will greatly improve your buying knowledge. They have a number of parts that work together to create an air flow in a space. Those parts are:
- A motor
- A blade or blades
- Safety cage
If you have a look at the video below, you can then see how they all come together to create a fan.
The reason that I put this section first is so you know what the really important parts of a fan are. The base gives it stability, the motor delivers the power, and the number of blades and their size create the breeze. When you are looking at buying a fan, then the motor size and the quality of build are the most important elements to look out for.
The Motor – A Buying Guide
The motor is usually described in measurements known as Amperes and Watts. To the ordinary person they mean very little. The best measurement to look for is how big a space a fan can cool. In almost all cases that is measured in square feet. You multiply the length of the room by the breadth of the room and multiply the two. This is important for ceiling fans for a bedroom, pedestal or tower fans for a room, or for attic fans. For smaller personal fans this is not really important.
Blades – A Buying Guide
Blades can be made from different materials. There is no huge difference in how they perform other than metal blades will last longer. Blades are usually off set, or set at angles to help create the air flow. It is important that these are always protected by a mesh cage where applicable.
How To Pick The Right Kind of Fan?
Fans come in different shapes and sizes and are used for different areas. Your choice should always be based on location and what you expect the fan to do. Let’s have a look at what fans are available and where you can use them. Some people will also heavily consider what they will actually look like in the space where they will be used.
As the name will tell you, many homes use attic fans which can be fitted on the roof or fitted on the gable of the house. Their purpose is to extract hot air from the attic and when that happens it can help cool the house down.
These are usually hard wired and controlled automatically by a thermostat. These are fitted in homes that get really warm in the summer months. You can read more about those by clicking here.
Bathroom Exhaust Fans
These are really all about removing the build up of moisture in a bathroom. As you know with baths and showers there is always going to be a lot of moisture in most bathrooms. Having one of these fitted helps reduce that moisture quickly. That in turn helps protect paint and also helps prevent mold.
They are also really useful for removing unwelcome odours from the bathroom if you know what I mean. We have put together all the detail on these, including a Top 10 best seller’s list and comparison table which you can view by clicking here.
These are a very popular choice for many homes both for their cooling properties and also for the décor of a room. They are fitted to the ceiling and have large blades that can spin overhead and create a strong air flow in a room.
They come in a whole range of styles and the blades are normally made from different types of wood. Many also have the option of a light fitting.
These are ideal for use in living rooms, dining rooms and bedrooms. The disadvantage of these is that you will normally need an electrician to have these fitted safely. Over time they can also get quite noisy if not maintained properly. You can read more about these by clicking here.
For many years fans have been produced. Over those years we have all become familiar with the usual white fan, perhaps the odd metal fan and even the odd black coloured fan. Only ceiling fans and tower fans have really tried to match in with the decor that people like to have in their home.
Well the good news is that some manufacturers have realised that customers want more choice and so some have released different lines of decorative fans. You can see an example of that to the right with the popular metal fan, shaped as a cat.
These really do come in a whole range of choices these days. If you would like to read about the best of these in the market, then please click right here.
Desk Top or Table Fans
Quite often these are referred to as personal cooling devices. They can be used in the home, a home office or in an office type area. They are small and compact and usually portable. These are simply used to cool down a personal area of space.
If you have your own desk these are ideal. Also places such as counter tops, on top of tables, near a computer or any space where an individual needs personal cooling.
Those of you who work at a computer space may also find these very useful.
You can read more detail on these by clicking here.
These fans are fitted with nozzles that help create a very fine mist. This mist evaporates and makes a nice chilling breeze. These are for outdoor use only such as in the yard, patios and decks and even on sport’s fields like athletics and football.
These are becoming a very popular choice.
These are popular in both homes and office for cooling down rooms or areas. The fan itself sits on top of a pedestal. Almost all of these then have an oscillating feature which rotates the fan head to help cool a larger area. The fan is housed inside a protective cage.
These are very popular with businesses and are often used in meeting rooms. These are always the best choice if you need to cool down a large room. You can read a lot more detail about these by clicking right here.
Many people do not like the look of the pedestal or table fan and want something that is sleeker in design. As the name would suggest tower fans are vertical and can fit into a smaller space. They are quiet and more and more people are starting to use these.
They come in a range of traditional and more contemporary styles. Again these are ideal for cooling down a smaller room such as a living room or bedroom. You can find out more about those by clicking here.
Wall Mounted Fans
Now in some cases you may prefer to have your fan mounted on the wall. People tend to do this when they want the air coming to them at a particular angle or if they are limited for space. When these are attached to the wall by a bracket, then they are up there and out of the way.
Those are ideal for those who are short on either table space or floor space. What is most important about those is that they should be able to be moved into various positions, and also have the ability to rotate.
What Does An Electric Fan Do?
All a fan simply does is circulate whatever air is in a room. You get the sense that it is cooling you down simply because of the breeze. In reality though most fans simply circulate what air is present at the time. They do not actually cool the air down.
There are a couple of exceptions such as window fans and attic fans. With these type air is drawn in from outside. However be aware that if the air is hot outside, these types of fans simply draw that hot air into the home. For most people the air outside the home is generally cooler that the air inside.
They also have the disadvantage of drawing in any pollutants that might be in the air. These would not be ideal if you lived near a busy road wit traffic or close to a restaurant.
What Will Cool the Air Inside a Home?
To do that you will need air conditioning of some kind. Air can only be cooled down if it is passed through some type of cooling mechanism or filter. That is why many people in very hot climates simply have to have air conditioning fitted. That is of course an expensive thing to have installed and also to run on a regular basis.
That is the main reason that many people opt for a fan. It is a much cheaper solution than paying for a full blown air conditioning solution.
Is a Dehumidifier a Good Option?
For cooling purposes a dehumidifier would not be suitable at all. Dehumidifiers are used when you want to remove moisture from a space. This could be as small as a closet or as large as a basement. They do not cool the air but they do remove moisture from the air and are ideal for keeping the air in an area dry. That helps prevent mould for example.