How to select a fan

Become A Fan Of Your Fan

Are you in the market for a new fan? Choosing the right one isn’t as easy as you think.

woman sitting in front of fan cooling off

You may think once you switch on your air conditioners you can put away those fans, but that’s not true. Running a fan along with your air conditioner helps the air conditioner cool more efficiently, and can help cut your energy costs. If you’re in the market for a new fan, here are some things you should look for.


If you choose a fan that’s not large enough or strong enough for the room, you’ll never get your room as cool as you’d like it. If you pick one that’s too large, your room will definitely cool down, but you’ll be wasting precious energy. Check the packaging on the fan before you make a purchase to make sure it matches up to what you need.

Low noise

You don’t want to feel like you’re shouting when you’re trying to talk over your fan. Look for one that advertises low noise. It’s usually the motor, or actually the motor casing, that makes the noise. A heavy-gauge steel motor case won’t make as much noise, while a thinner one will rattle — and that can get annoying in a hurry.

Check out What's an Air Multiplier? >>


An oscillating fan is your best bet when you’re trying to cool a large space. If a fan doesn’t move, it’s directing air down a narrow pathway, but if it turns, it can cool the entire room.

Check out Fun ways to cool off with the family >>


Come on, you know it counts. It’s not just finding a fan that works that’s important. You want one that looks nice, too. It makes sense. After all, it is going to sit in a room in your house, so it’s a reflection of your style. Plus, you do have to look at it all day. Choose a fan with a sleek look or a finish that matches your decor.

Read the Fan buying guide >>

Dual purpose

You pull your fans out every spring, and then switch them out for heaters once the cool air sets in. Save yourself the trouble by using one that both cools and heats. Dual-purpose fans cool when you need them to, and then switch over to heat when you need that. Most have temperature control features that ensure it’s doing just what you want it to.

Quick Tip

Look for a fan with a remote control for ease of use. There's nothing like switching it on without leaving your chair!

More home improvement tips

How to choose a portable air conditioner
How to select a space heater

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Comments on "How to select a fan"

aiira July 11, 2012 | 12:26 PM

It sounds like Ben Woodside got a LOT of ntiaonal coverage from last Friday's game. He scored 37 points against the team that was ranked number 9 in the nation, and it appeared to me like he wasn't even playing at top form. I think it's a fair shake to say that he'll end up playing as a backup for at least a few years in the NBA. He amazes me how quickly he is off the dribble. He reminds me a lot of John Stockton in that sense. However, in the games I watched NDSU play this year, the one aspect that Woodside has to improve upon to have any success in the NBA is to be able to find the open man when he drives inside and draws a double team. Instead, I saw him go to the hoop completely out of control a lot this year, and his shooting percentage in situations where he is going to the hoop out of control is not very good. It's a lot of fun watching the guy play, but I'm pretty certain that he's not going to make it in the NBA as a scoring threat.

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