Ceiling fans: Which way should they turn in the winter?

Posted by Shane Andersen on Friday, January 11th, 2019 at 8:22am.

It may sound counterintuitive, but your ceiling fan can actually help you warm up your home in the winter time. The trick is to make sure it's spinning in the right direction. Today, I'll tell you a little bit more about ceiling fans and their efficiency.

But first, your ceiling fan's blades should rotate clockwise in the winter and at a lower speed to prevent the 'wind' movement from creating a chill in your house. This rotation will push warm air near your ceiling back down to where you are sitting or standing. 

Of course, when summer rolls back around - you know, in about 5 months - just change the direction of your fan's rotation to counter-clockwise and give it some more speed for breezy comfort. 

Now, for more tips on ceiling fans:

1. The optimal placement of your ceiling fan - Put it in the middle of the room, about 8-9 feet above the floor and so blades are no closer than 18 inches from walls.

2. Get a longer downrod for high ceilings - A standard downrod (the shaft that connects the motor to the blades) is 3 to 5 inches long for 8-foot-high ceilings. For higher ceilings, longer downrods are available. Getting the right size for your room will give you the best results. 

3. For low ceilings, use a flush-mount fan - If your ceilings are lower than 8 feet, make sure you select the flush-mount fans. You don't want people hitting their heads on your ceiling fan! These fans have minimal depth, usually around 6 to 9 inches. 

4. Gain more control with a speed switch - Ease of control for your ceiling fan can lead to a much more comfortable room in your home. Many models come with pull chains or wall switches to control the speed. If you don't have one, it may be very affordable to upgrade. 

5. If you're starting from scratch, consult an electrician - If you don't currently have a ceiling fan in the room, you might want to consult, or hire, an electrician to make sure you're getting everything done right. Especially if you don't have electricity running to the spot in the ceiling where you want to hang your fan. It might cost you a bit of money, but you'll be making sure it gets completed correctly. 

6. Safety first - With a ceiling fan, it's also important to have a safety bracket for support. After all, blades of a fan will be swinging above your head. You might want to make sure the unit is firmly anchored to the ceiling joists to avoid disaster. 

After all of this, you get to sit back and enjoy the warmth or cool breeze provided by your ceiling fan!

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