How to Choose and Place the Perfect Ceiling Fan

published Jan 31, 2011
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

If you’ve ever been told that installing a ceiling fan is a great way to keep cooling costs down, you ought to keep that friend close because they’re exactly right. But if you buy the wrong size ceiling fan, or install it too close to the ceiling or walls, you could be counteracting all of the good work your fan should do for you.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

The size of a fan probably has the most effect on how well it cools down your room. To figure out the right size for your space, get out the measuring tape (or your builder’s floorplan) and measure your room. Check out these measurements, from Garbe’s:

  • For small rooms up to 64 square feet, get a 29″ fan.

  • For rooms up to 100 square feet, a 42″ fan.

  • For rooms up to 225 square feet, a 52″ fan.

  • And for large rooms up to 400 square feet, one 56″, one 60″ or two 52″ fans will be best.

After you’ve determined your fan is the right size for your space, placement is key. If you’re not sure of where or how high to hang the fan, check out these guidelines:

  • Place the fan as close to the center of the room as possible. If you have an irregular space (like an L-shaped room), consider mentally splitting the room and hanging two fans sized for each space.

  • The blades of your fan should be at least 18 inches from the nearest walls.

  • The optimal height from the floor for your fan depends on the height of your ceiling. After you’ve figured out the height of your room, check out this graphic, from Garbe’s, to find the optimal down rod length (the bar that travels from the fan’s base to your ceiling) to hang your fan:

  • Fans should never be hung lower than 7 feet from the ground. If your room is shorter than 8 feet, consider a low-profile venting fan that’s designed to hang flush with the ceiling.

(Images: flickr member Lynda Giddens licensed for use under Creative Commons, flickr member Csehak licensed for use under Creative Commons.)