How to buy a ceiling fan
A ceiling fan buying guide
When the temperature rises outside and you need help to combat the heat, consider installing a ceiling fan. Most ceiling fans can cool a room by up to 8 degrees. Before purchasing a new ceiling fan, familiarize yourself with how to buy a ceiling fan by learning about the features in this ceiling fan buying guide.
>> Consider the space available
Before looking at types of ceiling fan choices, first consider the space you will be installing it in. Most ceiling fans are installed in an indoor living area, in places like a living room or dining room. Space is important when it comes to which ceiling fan to buy, because the ceiling fan must be suited to the dimensions of the room. A ceiling fan that is manufactured for an indoor space will not work well in an outdoor environment. By considering space before determining which is the best ceiling fan to buy, you will have an easier time selecting the right fan to fit your needs.
Outdoor ceiling fans are different from indoor ceiling fans; an outdoor ceiling fan uses specific types of material suited to its environment. Although outdoor fans look similar to indoor fans in a ceiling fan comparison, outdoor ceiling fans are waterproof and weather resistant.
>> Consider room size
Just as you need to consider the type of space when determining which ceiling fan to buy, you also need to consider the size of the room where the ceiling fan will be installed. Although ceiling fans are often placed in the center of the room, larger rooms may need multiple fans for air flow purposes. As you are learning how to choose a ceiling fan, keep in mind that fans should not be placed over a sleeping area in a bedroom.
>> Consider room height
Although the ceiling fan designs you see may look great with your room, they must work with the height of your ceiling. Be sure to choose a flush-mount fan if your ceiling is low. A low ceiling is generally considered 8 feet or less. There are many advantages to a flush-mount design. Along with its sleek look, a flush-mount ceiling fan is capable of improving air flow in smaller spaces.
A ceiling height greater than 9 feet is considered a tall ceiling. For a tall ceiling, the ceiling fan hangs from a downrod. The most common height for a ceiling fan to hang is between 8 and 9 feet off the floor. Consider using this ceiling fan buying guide chart to help figure out what size downrod you need for your ceiling.
Height of ceiling
Size of downrod needed
|9 feet ||6 inches |
|10 feet ||12 inches |
|12 feet ||24 inches |
|14 feet ||36 inches |
|16 feet ||48 inches |
|18 feet ||60 inches |
|20 feet ||72 inches |
>> Consider ceiling fan size
It's important to consider the ceiling fan size when deciding on the best ceiling fan to buy, because the size of the blades varies. Picking the proper size for your living space will ensure that the fan looks great and operates at optimal efficiency.
While looking at ceiling fan designs, keep in mind that measurements are in terms of blade span. The span is the length from the tip of one blade to the tip of the blade directly across from it.
As you learn how to buy a ceiling fan, consider using this chart to help you compare ceiling fan sizes with the size of your living space.
Length of blade span
Size of living space
Best used in
| 29 inches to 36 inches || 75 square feet or less || Bathrooms or wash rooms |
| 42 inches to 48 inches || 175 square feet or less || Bedrooms or kitchens |
| 52 inches to 56 inches || 350 square feet or less || Living rooms or large bedrooms |
| Larger than 60 inches || Over 350 square feet || Any large space |
>> Consider ceiling fan design
When learning how to buy a ceiling fan, it is important to consider the style. The fan you choose should blend in well with your furniture and additional home decor supplies. Some of the most popular styles of ceiling fan designs to choose from include Victorian, traditional and contemporary.
As far as the design of the blades goes, there are a number of materials available to choose from. Most blades are made from plywood or solid wood. The type of finish varies as well. Common finishes for different types of ceiling fans include high luster, bleached oak, rosewood, walnut and cherry wood. Metal blades are also common.
When comparing one material to another, pay attention to the type of wood and finish used. Certain finishes have the advantage of being resistant to moisture, which is suitable for an outdoor patio setting.
>> Consider additional options
As you shop for ceiling fans that fit your budget, consider additional options that are available. Different types of ceiling fans come with lighting kits to brighten the room. Coupled with home lighting supplies, these fans have the ability to provide ambient lighting for any space. Keep in mind the height of your ceiling if you shop for ceiling fans with lighting. The lighting kit will add length to the unit.
If you have a high ceiling, consider a remote or wall control. Both allow you to change options like fan speed or light brightness. If you live in a place that gets cold during certain times of the year, look at fans that allow the blades to spin in a clockwise direction, which moves warm air throughout the space.
The best ceiling fan to buy depends on the size of your space, the height of your ceiling and the type of features that you want. Make sure to pay attention to specifications such as downrod size before making your choice. By learning how to buy a ceiling fan using this ceiling fan buying guide, you will be better able to pick the best ceiling fan to fit your needs.