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How To Set Your Ceiling Fan Direction For Every Season

How To Set Your Ceiling Fan Direction For Every Season

The key to maintaining a comfortable temperature in your home without breaking the bank is probably already in your house! When used correctly, ceiling fans can help you reduce energy usage in your home by up to 15%!

Ceiling fans cool down your home just enough so that you can set your thermostat up to 4 degrees higher in the summer, and if you reverse their rotation, they provide enough heat so that you can lower your thermostat by up to 4 degrees in the winter.

Changing the direction of your ceiling fan based on the season is easy — just find the switch or button on the base of your fan and flip it to reverse the rotation. Unless someone has previously toggled the switch, most ceiling fans rotate counterclockwise by default, which is the correct direction for cooling down your home in the summer. When it starts to get cold outside, you can flip the switch in the opposite direction to make the fan rotate clockwise and help warm air circulate.

Hot air rises, so in the winter, your ceiling fan can re-distribute warm air around the room. In the summer, your ceiling fan can circulate cool air, keeping your room comfortable so you don’t have to blast your air conditioner.

Adjusting the direction of your ceiling fan is one of the easiest ways to save money during the hot and cold months. All it takes is flipping a switch!

Watch this quick video from our EPB Energy ProsSM to learn more.

Summer Season: Using Your Ceiling Fan to Complement Air Conditioning

We all know how sweltering summer can be. When it’s hot outside, you want your home to feel like a cool oasis that lets you escape from the harsh weather outside. But setting your thermostat to low temperatures can consume a lot of energy, which can drive up your power bill in the summer. Ceiling fans, especially ones labeled EnergyStar®, are an easy and effective way to cool your home without causing spikes in your energy bill.

According to the Department of Energy, using your ceiling fan to supplement your HVAC unit in the summer can help you keep your house up to 4 degrees cooler, which means you can set your thermostat up to 4 degrees higher than normal without decreasing comfort.

ceiling fan direction

For example, if your ceiling fan is running in the summer, you can set your thermostat to 72º and enjoy cool and comfortable temperatures as low as 68º. To do this, you must set your fan to rotate in a counterclockwise direction when the weather starts to get hot. This will propel cold air downward so it can flow throughout your home.

Winter Season: Utilizing Ceiling Fans for Energy-Efficient Heating

Although it may seem counterintuitive, your ceiling fan can help you make the most of your central heating system. As you may remember from Science Class, hot air rises. This phenomenon happens in your home as well, so when your heater is blasting in the winter, most of that warm, heated air hovers near your ceiling, away from you and your family.

Adjusting your ceiling fan to rotate in a clockwise direction with a low speed setting will circulate the warm air hovering above your room and redirect it downward. That way, you’ll get more heat from your energy usage, which can lead to lower energy bills.

Adjusting Fan Speeds and Thermostat Settings

If your goal is to save money on your energy costs while keeping your home comfortable, it’s critical to adjust your thermostat in tandem with your ceiling fan. Reversing the direction of your ceiling fan will increase your comfort in summer and winter months.

However, to save money, you’ll need to adjust your thermostat to the highest possible temperature that’s comfortable for you in the summer, or the lowest possible temperature that’s comfortable for you in the winter.

The energy usage required for a fan to run is much lower than that of an HVAC system. Therefore, you’ll save money on your energy bill by relying a little more on your ceiling fan and a little less on your central cooling system.

Finding what speed setting is most useful for you and your family is a process of trial and error. In the summer, you should set your ceiling fan to the lowest setting that keeps everyone cool and comfortable. In the winter, you should choose a lower speed to circulate warm air without cooling it down.

More Ceiling Fan Tips to Lower Your Energy Bill

Here are some other ways you can optimize your ceiling fan to conserve energy and stay comfortable.

  1. Turn off your ceiling fan when you leave the room or no longer need it for temperature regulation.
  2. Clean the blades of your fan regularly to avoid spreading dust around your room. This will benefit your family’s health and comfort. It can also help your HVAC system perform more optimally.
  3. Replace your air conditioning filters regularly. This will improve the quality of the air you breathe, help you save 5–15% on your energy costs and reduce the amount of dust that collects on your fan blades so you don’t have to clean them as frequently.
  4. When purchasing a new ceiling fan, do your research and choose an energy-efficient or EnergyStar® model for long-term energy savings.
set your ceiling fan direction

Go Set Your Ceiling Fan Direction for This Season

Changing your ceiling fan’s rotation direction depending on the season is one of the easiest things you can do to keep your home comfortable and save money. The tips provided above will help you use your ceiling fan to its full potential in summer and winter months.

Make it easy to remember when it’s time to change the direction on your ceiling fan by setting a reminder notification on your mobile device or adding it to your calendar.

Need help selecting a ceiling fan? EPB customers can set up a FREE phone call with the EPB Energy Pros to get expert advice on ceiling fans, HVAC systems, energy rebates and ways to save on energy costs.

You can also schedule a free EPB Home Energy CheckupSM (valued at $150 but FREE for EPB customers) to receive a thorough inspection and detailed report on your home’s energy efficiency, along with a customized list of home energy improvements that can help you maximize your energy savings and comfort. Learn more or schedule a consultation.

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