Benefits of installing a ceiling fan

From summertime cool-downs to winter-ready temperature maintenance, ceiling fans deliver powerful environmental effects for every room. They are decorating essentials, too, helping to complete the look of a room. The American Lighting Association (ALA) offers the following reasons to consider a new ceiling fan.

1. Ceiling fans help you stay comfortable. A room with a ceiling fan sees a huge difference in the amount of air moved (otherwise known as CFM or cubic feet per minute), which can create a breeze that makes the ambient temperature feel eight degrees cooler than it actually is. That can save homeowners as much as 40 percent on their air conditioning bills. CFM, which ranges from 2,000 to 10,000, may be more important than motor size. Choose a 48- to 52-inch-wide fan with about 4,500 CFM.

2. Ceiling fans add beauty. Far from a limited palette of decorating choices, ceiling fan varieties have expanded by the hundreds, with manufacturers creating designs that are nearly as personalized as a one-of-a-kind paint swatch.

3. Ceiling fans can be sized to every space. For general guidance, use these measurements:

a. Small Room (0-75 square feet) means a 36-inch diameter fan.

b. Small/Medium Room (76-144 square feet) means a 42-50 inch diameter fan.

c. Medium Room (144-225 square feet) means a 52-54 inch diameter fan.

d. Large Room (225-400 square feet) means a 54-72 inch diameter fan.

e. Great Room (400-plus square feet) requires more than one fan, each being 52-72 inches.

4. Ceiling fans work year-round. During the winter months, you can increase energy efficiency by running your ceiling fan in reverse on low speed. Hot air rises, and the fan's winter flow circulates warm air downward.

5. Ceiling fans have the latest technology in place. Some fans have circuit boards and optic sensors that adjust to run faster or slower, depending on the weight of the blade installed, and most come with wall or hand-held controls.