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Friday, December 2, 2011

Save energy with ceiling fans

Flip the switch on ceiling fans.

Ceiling fans are very popular these days, with people ‘warming up’ to their many benefits. They increase comfort by reducing drafts in winter and creating a breeze in the warm temps, lower furnace and air conditioner usage, and can really make a statement in your d├ęcor. But ceiling fans are only beneficial all year long if you if you have them blowing the right way.

More commonly linked with warm weather, many people still tend to stop using their fans when cooler weather hits. But more and more people are realizing their benefit in winter and are actually purchasing them more for use in fall, winter and spring rather than in the summer.

The trick is to have the fan directing air down when it’s warm out and up when it’s cool. The downdraft in hot weather will create a cooling breeze. Reversing the flow in cool months will distribute the air – and warmth that tends to collect at the ceiling – to all levels of a room, making chilly drafts less likely.

So before it gets too cold outside, flip the switch on your ceiling fans and start enjoying their cool weather benefit.

Fan Tips
• Generally speaking, only use the lowest speed in winter to avoid creating a breeze that can feel cool and defeat the purpose of flipping the switch, unless…
• If your ceiling fan is installed in a room with a high ceiling, in addition to flipping the switch in winter, you should use the fan at medium or high speed - to help circulate that larger volume of warm air trapped at the ceiling.
• If you have a ceiling fan directly over a dining table or desk, keep it in ‘winter mode’ all year long to prevent cooling off the food. Instead, use a high speed in summer to create a less direct, but still cooling breeze.