With summer fast approaching you may already have turned on your air conditioning a couple of times, marking the start of what is for some the beginning of a number of high electricity bills. It’s not all doom and gloom, however, since you can save money on your bills by utilising ceiling fans if you already have them.
The average air conditioner unit uses around 3,500 watts of energy when it’s running whereas a ceiling fan only uses 600 watts, even when it’s running on high.
So were you to use your ceiling fans all day long and cut down on using your air conditioning, even if for just 30 minutes a day, you could save money over time. We’re going to show you some tricks you can employ by tinkering around a little with your ceiling fans which will help to lower your electricity usage and increase your savings.
What are the benefits of ceiling fans?
In essence there really isn’t a downside to purchasing a ceiling fan. Once installed it only consumes around as much power as a standard 60w light bulb and is considerably cheaper than any A/C unit would be. They come in all shapes, sizes and styles, therefore there’s something to match every budget. The cheapest fans tend to have powder-coated metal blades which are good for general purpose cooling. Conversely, fans with timber blades tend to be more expensive but are usually a lot quieter than their metal counterparts or indeed most A/C units. You can even purchase decorative ceiling fans that also contain lighting, offering dual functionality. Similarly to air conditioning units, some ceiling fans also run off remote control, saving the need for a pull cord, or switch.
Why hire an experienced electrician to carry out ceiling fan installation?
Although ceiling fans come with instructions they can be complicated to install, especially if you have to fit an electrical circuit box in your ceiling to accommodate it. For this reason, this is a task that’s often best left to an experienced electrician who can carry out the ceiling fan installation both quickly and safely. In addition, ceiling fans (by their very nature) are relatively heavy and as such need to be secured properly into a fixture (usually a joist) that’s strong enough to hold it.
Adjust the direction of your fan’s blades
The majority of fans have a clockwise and anticlockwise setting which are applicable for different seasons. Sometimes it can be difficult to figure out which setting you need because this depends on how the blades are aligned, and this can vary from one model to another. An easy way to check for a summer setting is to stand immediately below your fan and turn it on. If you feel a breeze then your fan is in the ‘summer’ setting which is usually clockwise. If you don’t feel a breeze check for the button which switches the blades in the other direction. During the hot summer months, you should have your fan set on high with the air blowing downwards directly beneath the fan. By doing this you’ll benefit from the most air movement in the centre of your room and a breeze that feels cool on the skin.
Set your thermostat’s temperature higher
If you’re going to have your ceiling fans running all day on a hot summer’s day then set the temperature on your thermostat a few degrees higher. Your fan doesn’t actually create cooler air itself but it helps make you feel cooler by circulating the cool air more efficiently. It also creates a breeze effect which makes your room feel cooler than it actually is.
Turn your fans off when you leave the house
Some air conditioning units have a programmable thermostat that let you turn your air conditioning on and off depending on when you’ll be at home. Most ceiling fans, however, don’t have this facility so it’s up to you to turn them on and off yourself. Doing this is important because it can lead to large savings. Get into the ritual of turning off your lights, turning off your fans, and locking the door when you leave home, and you won’t forget this important task.
Practically any home can be made more energy-efficient with a few ceiling fans if you don’t already have them. Here are a few things to look out for when choosing a ceiling fan:
- Ignore any fan with a blade angle of less than 12% as it is more decorative than functional
- Unless your room is really well lit, purchase one with a light assembly
- Buy the size of the fan which matches the size of your room
- Budget for installation unless you’re planning to do it yourself
If you’d like advice about ceiling fans or need a hand to install them, then get in touch with Static Electrics on 1300 206 004. With over 28 years of experience in the industry we offer an efficient, professional, and affordable electrical services.