Ceiling fan direction
Q: Which way is forward on a ceiling fan? Which way should it go during the heating
6-speed ceiling lamp. Photo courtesy of Lamp Depot
A: Fans come with a forward and a reverse
setting. When you click it to 'forward', the fan
blows the air down. Standing under the fan, you
will feel a breeze. When you click it to 'reverse',
the fan reverses rotation and blows the air up.
Now, when you stand under the fan, you won't
feel a breeze.
So, during the winter, turn the fan to 'reverse' to circulate the warm air without blowing air
down and cooling you in the process. Hot air rises and a ceiling fan, running in reverse, gently
mixes the air.
During the summer, on the other hand, turn it to 'forward' to create a wind-chill effect as the air
moves against your skin and cools you.
So far, what I've said holds true for rooms with standard 8-foot ceilings. Fan companies
recommend this procedure.
"Some people with higher ceilings, like a stairwell, often do the opposite of this," Marcus of
Lamp Depot says and explains their rationale. Cool air sinks to the floor, which causes the lower
levels to be cooler and the upper levels hotter. So, in the summer, they run the fan in a blowing-up direction to keep cool air-conditioned air, which is coming out of their upstairs vents, upstairs
where they want it.
In the winter, they run the fan in the blowing-down direction to move warm air into the lower
levels of the house where they spend their time during the day. They feel no draft downstairs
because they are too far away from the fan.
on ceiling fans — how to tell which way is 'forward',
Lamp Depot information service