By John. Ceiling Fan. Published at Friday, August 17th, 2018 - 19:13:57 PM.
Choosing the Right Ceiling Fan For Your Room Thinking of installing a new ceiling fan in your room? Then you will need to know how to choose the right one. Unfortunately, choosing a ceiling fan is not as simple as some may thing; in addition to design and looks, there are many other factors you will need to take into consideration when assessing its suitability for your use. Here, we examine some of these factors. Purpose of the Ceiling Fan Before shortlisting the right fan to install in your room, youll need to be clear of its purpose. Will it be the only fan in the room or will it work in tandem with other ceiling fans? Will it be decorative or dual purpose- both for lighting and cooling the room? Commonsensical as it sounds, there are many who overlook this step only to regret their purchase decision because the fan they chose lacks the functionality needed. Size of the Room Size is the second thing to consider. The size of the room will be the main point of reference for choosing the size of your new ceiling fan. Even if you only intend the fan to be decorative, a tiny fan in a large room will look a little silly. The chart below is a standard room-to-fan reference that will help you make the right ceiling fan size choice: Room and Ceiling Fan Size Up to 64 sq. ft. - 36 or smaller 64 to 144 sq. ft. - 36 to 48 144 to 225 sq. ft. - 48 to 52 225 sq. ft. and above - 52 or larger Type of Mounting The next important consideration is mounting type. Your choice of mounting will almost always be dependent on your ceiling height. According the American Lighting Association, the ceiling fan should hang at least 7 above the floor, though 8 - 9 is best, if the ceiling is high enough to allow for that. Here is a description of the various mounting types and how to choose between them: Flush (Hugger Type) Mount - This is where the fan is anchored directly to the ceiling without the use of a downrod. This reduces the drop distance of the fan and is thus ideal for low ceilings or fans with low hanging lights. However flush mount ceiling fans do have a major drawback; the airflow is almost always somewhat restricted in such fans owning to the very short distance between the ceiling and fan blade. They are thus not suitable for rooms with higher ceiling as well as ceiling that are not flat. Standard Mount - These usually use a 3 to 5 inch downrod and are the most common for rooms with 8 to 9 ceiling height. Extended Mount - These are perfect for high or vaulted ceilings. The length of the downrod used is customized such that the fan is positioned between 8 to 9 above the floor for optimal airflow. Control Type Another factor to consider when choosing a ceiling fan is the choice of control types (i.e. pull chain, wall switch or remote control). The pull chain is often the cheapest and most basic alternative. If aesthetics is not a consideration, it is definitely a viable alternative. The remote control, on the other hand, is the most costly. This is not surprising because it is the most high tech option and offers the most convenience. A downside though this that the remote control can be easily misplaced especially if you have kids in the house. The middle ground solution is therefore the wall control; though not as convenient as the remote control, you will enjoy the convenience of always knowing where it is located (i.e. cant be misplaced). As can be seen, aesthetics though important, cannot be your only consideration when choosing ceiling fans. The purpose of the fan, size of your room, height of your ceiling and even choice of control type should all be taken into consideration too, especially if you want to choose a fan that is both beautiful and functional.
Tips On Installing A Ceiling Fan I assume you are a DIY and have decided that putting ceiling fans in your home makes good sense. Youve probably researched the advantages of installing ceiling fans and have learned that besides the aesthetic appeal that is part and parcel of a ceiling fan, there are a number of benefits that impact your wallet in a positive way. The industry has determined that the cooling effect of a ceiling fan can make a room feel at least 7 degrees cooler than it really is and the consequent adjustment to your thermostat can cut your air conditioning related energy costs by as much as 35% to 45%. In the cold months, reversing the fan blades so they push warm air down from the ceiling can reduce your heating expenses as well. Some experts maintain that you can save between 8% to 12% on your heating bill. So, youre sold on the idea of installing ceiling fans. The next step is to decide what brand, style, etc. youre going to invest your money in. Do the research. Find out who the major players are in the manufacture of ceiling fans and how long theyve been at it. Its not necessarily who sells the most ceiling fans but rather, what consumers say about the various brands. The Internet can help but you have to be wary about sales pitches that are disguised as testimonials. My personal preference is Westinghouse because of a multitude of factors that Im not going to get into since this article is intended to focus more on the installation end of the ceiling fan rather than what to buy. However, before I get off the subject of what to buy, a word or two to the wise. This is not a purchase that you want to make with the idea of saving as much money as you can on these units. Manufacturers of inexpensive units have become more and more clever at making their products look great. However, a ceiling fan needs to pass the test of time and extensive use and many if not most of the cheaper units simply dont pass this test. Inexpensive fan casing is often made from thin material that may not be of the best quality. So, after a few years, you may begin to notice the motor housing beginning to show signs of wear with vibrating and other noise being the telltale signs. Theres nothing you can do to fix these problems besides investing in another fan (throwing good money after bad). Also, cheaper fans often have blades that are made of inferior material which may begin to warp or go out of balance. While you can do a temporary fix for this kind of problem, youre going to end up with a chronic headache since the basic cause of the problem just wont go away no matter how many times you try to fix it. Here are a few more tips to consider while youre shopping for the right fan(s). The size of the room determines the span of the blade you should be looking for. Youll find blade spans that range between 29" to 56". The smallest blade span will work for a room that is no bigger than 50 square feet while a 36" blade span will service an area of approximately 70 to 80 square feet. Larger rooms, such as 100 square feet need at least a 42" blade span and a room that is larger than 100 square feet should have a fan with the longest blade span you can find. Make sure the pitch of the blade is approximately 14 degrees for the most efficient air movement. Many fans are equipped with lighting. Consider the size of the room and what the room will be used for when deciding whether or not to buy a fan with lights. Most manufacturers make ceiling fans that can be adapted to lighted fixtures with a lighting kit designed specifically for a particular model. Finally, buy a ceiling fan that is reversible so that you can run it in one direction for cooling and in the other direction for heating. Keep in mind that the fan blades should be at least seven feet from the floor and a foot below the ceiling. For lower ceilings, choose a hugger type fan. With higher ceilings, you can purchase what is called a down rod for purposes of extending the fan closer to the floor. Okay. Its time to get down to some of the basic issues related to getting these things up where they belong and doing what theyre designed to do. Youve purchased the fan(s). As you unpack the first one, make sure you check the parts you take from the box against the listing (usually an exploded drawing) of the parts shown in the manufacturers literature. Lay out the parts and then check them off to make sure that youve got everything youre supposed to have. Keep the parts away from the area where you will actually install the fan to keep from creating a mess as you begin the actual job. Be sure youve got all the tools you need before starting the job. This includes a stepladder, the right kind of screwdrivers, a pair of pliers, something to strip the wires with, a circuit tester, a ceiling box, a hammer and a saw to make the opening in the drywall. Its probably a good idea to have your toolbox handy just in case you need something you havent anticipated. The best way to make sure youve got everything you need is to read the installation instructions from beginning to end before you do anything else. If youre among the fortunate, the room will have a ceiling box that is being used for a light fixture already mounted in the center of the room. Generally, the existing ceiling box will need to be replaced with one specifically designed for mounting a ceiling fan. Ceiling fans weigh considerably more than light fixtures and may require additional support. If the material that came with the fan doesnt include a new ceiling box and mounting brackets, you will have to purchase these separately before proceeding. You may need to hire an experienced, licensed electrician to do this part of the job if you dont have the expertise yourself. The primary consideration is to make certain that the ceiling box provides adequate support for the weight of the ceiling fan. A brace (mounting bracket) mounted between ceilings joists will provide the necessary support. On the other hand, if you dont have a ceiling box mounted in the center of the room, you will need to undertake the necessary renovations to run electricity from the closest source to the center of the room. The steps required to do this are beyond the scope of this article and will usually require the services of an experienced and licensed electrician. Most manuals that are packed with the ceiling fan will provide considerable detail regarding what it will take to adequately support the ceiling fan. Make sure the electricity to the room is turned off at the box (circuit breaker or fuse box). Test the wiring with a circuit tester to make sure its off. If the room has inadequate natural lighting, you may need to run an extension cord with a lighting fixture from another part of the house to provide you with adequate visibility. Carefully read the installation manual and follow the step-by-step instructions for installing the fan. Keep in mind that this is usually at least a two-person job. Even though the instructions may not tell you this, be sure that there is sufficient clearance between the blades and the ceiling to attach the blades after installing the motor. If not, install the blades to the motor arms before attaching the motor to the electrical box. Its common sense so it may not be mentioned in the manual but make sure the screws that are used to attach the blades are evenly tightened. Now that your fan is installed, its time to test its operation. Turn on the power and switch on the fan. Although the manufacturer should make certain that the blades are evenly weighted and that their angles are all the same, it may still wobble somewhat once it begins to rotate. If this is the case, turn the fan off and check to make certain that the screws that attach the blades are all tight. Use a yardstick held vertically at the edge of one of the blades and manually rotate the blades to make sure that they are in alignment. If there is any misalignment, gently bend the blade up or down to get the blade aligned properly. If the wobble persists, it usually means that one or more of the blades weigh more or less than the others. Many manufacturers include weight-balancing clips with the ceiling fans. These clips install on the top of the blade and add weight. Less weight is added the closer to the motor housing the clip is installed. Adjust the clip(s) until the wobble stops. If weight-balancing clips were not included, they can be purchased at a lighting store, home center or at many hardware stores.
Ceiling Fans Leading the Future The Current Market Ceiling fans have been gaining in popularity for the past 20 years. What started as a cost effective alternative to air conditioning to cool your living room bedroom or kitchen has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry. Ceiling fans are now offered in many styles and price ranges from the very basic to high end designer styles. They can cost from less than one hundred to several thousand dollars and are being made to suit any taste or preference. The ceiling fan manufacturing industry has evolved to provide very high quality fans at reasonable costs and has built the consumer market for these products. This led to explosive growth in the sales of fans through the home improvement retailers like Home Depot, Lowes and others. The days of showroom sales for the mid to high level fans may be in for a change due the marketing efforts of these industry giants. Marketing data suggests that approximately 70% of all ceiling fans are being installed by the homeowner within 2 years of occupying their home. They are replacing the existing lighting fixtures with higher grade fixtures and ceiling fans in the bedroom and kitchen area. The living room is also a popular choice for fixture replacement with ceiling fan and lighting kit combinations being installed in greater numbers. The consumer is faced with so many choices in the market today that it can be a bewildering experience for todays consumer. The average purchaser is going down to their favorite home improvement store to choose their new fan or lighting fixture or even making their choice on the internet. They come to a lighting specialty store or showroom only after being overwhelmed by the choices in the home improvement stores aisles which provide little if any service or assistance. The choice of fans today is greater than at any time in past 5 to 10 years. Many of the major brands are also selling products in the home improvement market. Companies like Hunter are distributing several models in Home Depot this trend is expected to increase as they gain market share. Changing Technology Numerous manufacturers have been paying attention to this trend in the consumer market and are providing fans that meet the needs of todays consumer. The ease of assembly and use of pre-assembled components speed the installation of their products. Westinghouse Lighting Corporation has a line of fans that captures all of these needs and they claim can be installed in 15 minutes on average. The weak link in all of these improvements is the ceiling box itself. This is the component that the fan is attached to and must bear the static and dynamic loads of the fans operation. It also houses the electrical wiring for the fan. This utilitarian component has been under going improvement for the past 10 years or more to make its installation quicker, cheaper and easier than the traditional metal box of yesterday. The electrical contractor of today is using products that increase his productivity and maximize the potential profit of his labor. They have a large choice of nail-on products that already have the fasteners attached to the ceiling box and all they have to do is hold it in place and nail or screw it into a joist or truss for it to be secured. Many of these boxes are thermoplastics which are inexpensive and easy to manufacture. They also have the added advantage of not needing to be electrically grounded so this saves the additional labor that metal boxes require. This fact is not lost on the ceiling box manufacturers that are producing ceiling, outlet and junction boxes that are quick to install and are made of plastics that require less and less labor to install properly. This has gotten to the point that there is now a lighting box that only needs to be pushed onto a wooden stud for it to be secured; no fasteners are needed at all! The ceiling fan manufacturers however may not be keeping pace with the trend in ceiling box installation practices. They advise the consumer of their products to reinforce or replace the existing fixture with a fan-rated ceiling box which is prudent, though are the consumers heeding their installation directives? The installation instructions for many of the fans available today show a metal type box that has screws going through the box and into blocking above the box. This is not what is installed in most of the newer construction homes which use the labor saving nail-on products. As a general rule builders and contractors do not provide blocking above the ceiling box with a nail-on product as the added material & labor is not cost effective. The average nail-on plastic ceiling box is rated for only supporting a 35 pound static load. They are also not fan-rated. This requires that the ceiling box be replaced with a fan-rated box before the installation of a ceiling fan. Fan-rated boxes are capable of holding 70 pound loads and are rated for this application. This is easier said than done! The nail-on products do not lend themselves to be reinforced easily since labor savings have also been applied to the construction of homes themselves. In many circumstance the average home does not have an attic, only a narrow crawl space between the trusses is provided. This combined with blow-in insulation makes the location of the ceiling box difficult if not impossible when a fan is to be hung on an upper floor. For installation of a ceiling fan between floors leaves little choice for this task since it cannot be accessed easily from above or below the ceiling since the upper floor is directly above the ceiling box. Cutting a hole in the floor or knocking out the ceiling is not prudent just to place blocking above a ceiling box. Medallions are available but the added expense, labor and time can be prohibitive, especially if the medallion is painted to match the ceiling. The brace type of products that are sold today are an alternative though they work better in theory than in practice as the old ceiling box needs to be removed before they can be installed. Home Depot has a web page devoted to this process which they claim can take ½ a day to complete. A Better Way Following the trends used in the construction methods of todays homes has led to the development of a new and simple method to reinforce an existing ceiling box to that of a fan-rated box that is consumer friendly. Access is gained through the ceiling box itself with a small bracket being utilized in what is in most cases is wasted space within the ceiling box itself. Two fasteners are driven through the ceiling box and into the joist or truss with the bracket being firmly held in position. This bracket has been shown by independent testing by a leading product testing laboratory to allow the ceiling box to sustain very large dynamic loads. This testing revealed that ordinary thermoplastic ceiling boxes that are reinforced in this manner are capable of sustaining loads that are factors above the requirements of NEC (314.27D & 422.18). These NEC building codes apply to the installation of ceiling fans and fan-rated ceiling boxes. Another added feature is that this product installs in only 2 minutes or less with common hand tools and allows the installation of a ceiling fan to be accomplished in less than an hour from start to finish. If the Westinghouse fans were to be used with this product it could be done in 17 minutes or less! The product can also be also used with metal boxes after 2 holes have been drilled in the ceiling box. Failure modes during product testing revealed that the test plate was being pulled off of the ceiling box. The ceiling box is left intact and firmly secured to the simulated test truss. A grounding lug and screw is provided on the bracket to facilitate grounding of the pierced ceiling box to alleviate any concerns regarding an energized component outside of the ceiling box. This product is manufactured in the United States by EE Products Inc. as FAN-EZE under the following U.S. Patents, 6,881,900, 6,909,045, & 6,965,077 and is available for distribution by retail and wholesale sales outlets. Further information regarding the products can be found at http://www.eeproductsinc.com or contacting the company directly at 801-254-5144.
How to Choose the Best Ceiling Fan for Your Needs! So, you may be wondering which ceiling fan is going to be the right one for you. There are a variety of different choices when it comes to ceiling fans, that it can be quite a task to pick out the one that is best for you and your home. If you are planning on purchasing ceiling fans in the near future, there are many things you need to consider. So, here are a few tips to help you pick out the best ceiling fans for your home. Fan Size First of all, when you are trying to find the best fans for your home, you will want to consider the size. Ceiling fans can be found in a variety of different sizes; however, the size of the room you are buying for will definitely influence this decision. If you are buying fans for a smaller room, then youll want to go for a smaller fan. However, for larger fans, youll need something that moves a bit more air, so a large fan, like a 50-54 inch fan, is a great choice. Noise The last thing you want in a ceiling fan is a lot of noise. Before you purchase a new ceiling fan, be sure to take the time to check the noise ratings. If you can actually test the fan and see how noisy it is. The best ceiling fans will be so quiet that youll barely even know that they are running. The Motor Type You will also find that the motor type is important when you are trying to pick out the best fan. There are two types of motors that are usually used in ceiling fans - friction driver motors and direct drive motors. Usually a direct drive motor is the best choice, since they last longer and have fewer parts that are separated. However, they do tend to be a bit more expensive, but are well worth the extra money youll pay. Lighting When picking out ceiling fans, youll need to consider whether or not you want lighting to come with the fans. Some fans come with light kits on them, while other fans do not. In some cases you may have to pick out the light kit separately as well. There are a variety of different light kits that you can choose from, and youll want to pick one that will look nice with the fan and offer plenty of light. Price If you are looking for the best ceiling fans, price is also going to be important. While you no doubt want to get a good deal, it is important to realize that you get what you pay for. Going with the cheapest fan will probably not be a great idea, but a fan that is a bit more expensive will have better features, such as remote controls, variable speeds, and a higher grade. So, you are often better of to spend a little more money for a fan that will be reliable and long lasting. No doubt choosing for the best ceiling fans for your home is important to you, and these tips can help you make the best possible choice. So, next time you are shopping for new ceiling fans, keep these simple tips in mind to help you pick out the very best.
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