Installing a Ceiling Fan? Make Sure It’s Done Right!

Ceiling fans are an easy and inexpensive way to add comfort to rooms year-round. They can provide a gentle breeze indoors and out in the summer and can keep cool air evenly distributed around a room. In winter, they keep warm air from collecting near the ceiling, eliminating cold spots and helping reduce heating costs.

The key to getting the most out of your ceiling fan is a matter of choosing the right one and installing it properly. With the number of choices available, picking the right fan for your needs and installing it can seem a little overwhelming. Here are some things to consider.

Size Matters

When it comes to ceiling fans, matching the fan blade size to the room is the first consideration. Too small and you’ll run the fan harder; too large and your room will seem like a wind tunnel. Here are guidelines from the American Lighting Association.

Room Size:
Up to 75 sq. ft.
Fan Blade Size:
36 inches or smaller

Room Size:
75 to 144 sq. ft.
Fan Blade Size:
36 to 42 inches

Room Size:
144 to 225 sq. ft.
Fan Blade Size:
44 to 50 inches

Room Size:
225 to 400 sq. ft.
Fan Blade Size:
50 to 54 inches

For larger rooms or rooms with high ceilings, blades as long as 80 inches are available.

Other things to consider include the fan’s air movement (measured in cubic feet per minute, or CFM), its reliability, energy efficiency, and its motor noise. You can find most of this information online to guide your shopping.

Location, Location, Location

Ceiling fans don’t change the temperature of a room, they just move air around. This can add a cooling breeze in summer and spread heat evenly in winter. Bedrooms, family rooms, and dining areas are good locations since that’s where we spend most of our time. Covered patios and pergolas can be more comfortable with a cooling summer breeze, too. Centering fans over beds and tables are the common choice. Just be sure the breeze doesn’t create a nuisance or the blades aren’t a hazard.

Keep It Safe and Convenient

Even slowly rotating fan blades can create hazards, so make sure your fan isn’t mounted too low. For low ceilings, get a flush-mounted model. Many kits come with a hanging rod that’s designed for average ceiling heights of 8-10 feet. For high ceilings, extension rods are available. Be sure the rod is compatible with the fan you buy.

Your choice of light and fan controls can make a difference, too. A single wall switch is handy, but if you have a light and fan combo, you may have to use a pull chain or second switch on the fan housing to operate each individually. You may not be able to use a dimmer for the light, either. Depending on your lighting needs, it may be more convenient to have a fan with its own controls on a separate circuit. Dual wall switches for separate light and fan circuits are available, but should only be installed by a professional electrician. And some fans come with remote controls, too.

Install It Properly

Besides getting the wiring right, there are some other things to consider. Brackets must be attached to ceiling structures strong enough to support the fan’s weight and that won’t transfer noise to nearby rooms. The fan must be balanced properly to avoid wobbling and vibrations. Electrical connections must be made to code to prevent overloading, fire and electrical hazards, and insulation mustn’t create overheating danger, as well.

Save yourself the headaches and hazards of ceiling fan installation by calling Allstar Electrical Services. We’ll see to it that you enjoy the benefits of your ceiling fan safely for years to come.