Did you know you can actually decrease your energy consumption in the winter by using your ceiling fans? Well, it’s true. A properly set ceiling fan operating in conjunction with your heating system can actually lower your overall energy usage during the coldest months of the year. And all you have to do is follow these simple steps.
Many heating systems operate at roughly 3500 watts. A typical ceiling fan runs at only 60 watts. So by adjusting your thermostat and operating your ceiling fan blades in the appropriate direction, you’ll keep the air moving feel warmer and the heating system will run less often.
Here are some simple tips: first, when buying a ceiling fan check the blade angle. A 12 degree angle is the least you want but no greater than 16 degrees. If you buy a ceiling fan with less than a 12 degree angle you won’t get the desired cooling effect. And more than 16 degrees will allow the sound of the air movement to be heard which can become annoying, especially for light sleepers.
Second, all ceiling fans have a reverse feature: one direction for summer and one direction for winter. The summer setting (counter-clockwise) will be the one where you can feel the air movement when standing directly beneath the fan. The winter setting (clockwise) actually pulls air to the ceiling and forces it in the direction of the walls. This will avoid giving you the “wind chill” effect.
Finally, during the winter set your thermostat four degrees lower than normal. Leave your ceiling fan running during the coldest part of the day. The air movement towards the walls will make the room feel warmer than it actually is. And as we said before, the heating system will run less often. The benefit is that you feel warmer even though the ambient temperature in the room is lower than before. And your heating system is running less thereby using less energy which, in turn, will save you money.