When you think of ceiling fans you first think about using them in the summer months to push cool air down to the floor. The cool air blowing down from the ceiling creates a wind chill effect, which makes you feel cooler without actually having to lower the temperature on your thermostat. In fact, if you run ceiling fans in your home you may even be able to raise the temperature in your home thus saving some money on your electric bill.
Now here’s the part you all have been waiting for…to hear how you could possibly benefit from using a ceiling fan in the winter.
Unlike summer where we want to feel a cool breeze while luxuriating in our Barcalounger, in winter we want to avoid the feeling of a breeze and feel warm and cozy. Fortunately, ceiling fans can help in the winter by moving the warmer air that resides comfortably up at the ceiling down into the room.
Now, I’m sure all of you were great students and remember that warm air rises because warm air is lighter than cold air. It all has to do with molecules and their distance between each other or something like that. Honestly, I can’t remember the details of why and I don’t feel like searching the Google for it.
Anyway, here are a few general rules to follow to make all this work:
- The direction of the fan is determined by standing right under the thing and looking up at the ceiling.
- During the summer months the fan should be blowing straight down (blades turning counter-clockwise) to create the wind chill effect I talked about earlier.
- During the winter months the fan should be reversed (blades turning clockwise) to force the warm air down.
“How do I reverse my fan”, you ask?” First (this is important now) make sure the fan is turned off and stopped completely before you do anything. You do not want to change the direction of the fan with the blades rotating and you also don’t want to be looking around the fan with the blades turning…nothing good will come of it especially if you value your fingers and nose. Next, look for a small toggle switch (see handy photo below) located somewhere on the housing just below the blades and flip the switch. If you have one of those fancy fans that include a remote control then this can all be done with the push of a button.
With your ceiling fan you can effectively stay cooler in summer and warmer in winter simply with the flip of a switch. It’s like magic…well except with a switch.
*Of course, I am not referring to my wife as snorning so bad that she sounds like a "walrus with a head cold". In fact, I have been reliably informed that my own snoring is even worse. Hey, maybe that's why our ceiling fan runs every night all night long. Huh...