Archive for the ‘How to’ Category

How To Install a Ceiling Fan

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

A great way to add comfort to any interior or exterior area of your home is with a ceiling fan. Installing a ceiling fan can also add style to the space while lowering energy costs year-round when operated properly. Ceiling fans create a “wind chill” effect during the warmer months and help distribute warm air evenly throughout a room during the coolers months by spinning in reverse mode. Check out our Ceiling Fan Direction post for further information on what direction your fan should be rotating and why in the summer and winter months. Fanimation Bayhill Ceiling Fan

Before installing your ceiling fan…

- Locate the ceiling joist or other suitable support in the ceiling.

- Identify wires and make sure you can connect the wires properly.

- Make sure you can lift at least 40 lbs. If the fan is heavier make sure you have some help.

- Make sure the Floor to Blade Clearance is going to be at least 7 feet.

Easy Step by Step instructions on How to Install a Ceiling Fan

These directions are for installations with an existing Junction box.

1. Turn OFF the Power to the circuit that the fan will be on before starting installation.

2. Assemble the Ceiling Fan – Follow the specific assembly instructions that came with the ceiling fan you are installing. Ceiling fan assembly varies model to model.

General instructions on how to assemble a ceiling fan

1. In most models you can turn the motor over in the styrofoam packaging so that the top of the motor faces you then un-bundle

Image 2-4

Image 2-4

the wires.

2. Feed the motor wires through the hanger ball and downrod assembly and set the downrod in the top motor coupling.

3. Loosen the square head set screw on the top motor coupling to install the downrod and ball assembly.

4. Once the ball assembly and downrod are installed tighten the set screw securely. The set screw must be properly installed as described above or fan wobble could result.

5. Use the screws and grommets to secure flange to blade. Repeat for the remaining blades then turn motor over to mount blades. Blades can be installed before or after hanging the fan motor in place.

6. Attach one blade assembly to the motor hub using appropriate screws. Do not tighten screws completely at this time.

Step 2-6

Step 2-6

7. Install the remaining blade assemblies in the same way. Gently snug all flange screws to the motor hub, working around the hub in a clockwise sequence.

8. Securely tighten all flange screws – working around the hub in a clockwise sequence.

Note: Failure to follow these steps could result in fan wobble.

3. Hang the Ceiling Fan

1. Securely attach the mounting bracket to the outlet box and pull the wires through the center hole.

2. Carefully lift the fan and set the hanger ball and downrod assembly on the hanger bracket that is attached to the outlet box. Be sure the groove in the ball is lined up with the tab on the mounting bracket.

Warning: Failure to set tab in groove could cause damage to electrical wires and possible shock or fire hazard.

Warning: To avoid possible fire or shock, do not pinch wires between the hanger ball/downrod assembly and hanger bracket.

4. Wire the Ceiling Fan – If you feel that you don’t have enough electrical wiring knowledge or experience, have your fan installed by a licensed electrician.

The following steps are for a ceiling fan without a light fixture. If you are using a light fixture with your fan, see the light fixture owners manual for wiring instructions.


Step 4-4

Step 4-4

2. Connect the green grounding wire from the fan and the green grounding wire from the mounting bracket to the grounding conductor supply (This may be a bare wire or a wire with green colored insulation). Securely connect wires with wire connector supplied.

3. Securely connect the fan motor white wire to the supply white (neutral) wire using the wire connector supplied.

4. Securely connect the fan motor black wire to the first hot wire and blue wire to the second hot wire using a wire connector supplied.

5. After connections have been made, turn leads upward and carefully push leads into the outlet box, with the white and green leads on one side of the outlet box and the black and blue leads on the other side of the outlet box.

5. Install the Canopy

Step 5-1

Step 5-1

1. Align the slots in the canopy with the tabs or threaded screws on the mounting bracket and bring the canopy over the mounting

bracket. Turn the canopy clockwise until the tabs or threaded screws on the mounting bracket lock with the locks in the canopy.

2. Loosely secure the canopy screw into the canopy. Once all screws are installed, tighten them securely.

6. Turn on Electrical Power

7. Pull chain and make sure the fan is operating properly

Run the ceiling fan on high speed to make sure the base is secure and there is no wobble or loud noise. If your newly installed fan wobbles or is making a loud noise, check out Del Mar Designs How to Balance a Ceiling Fan Guide or Ceiling Fan Troubleshooting Guide for other common ceiling fan problems.

If you have any questions about the above steps or need further information on how to install a ceiling fan please ask us.

Save Money on your Winter Energy Bills with Ceiling Fans

Friday, November 19th, 2010

Yes you read that correctly, Ceiling fans can help reduce your energy usage and costs in the winter time also! Although ceiling fans are more commonly linked to hot weather they can help add comfort year-round. They also cost a lot less to operate than your heating and cooling units. Energy Star pie_graphSince heating and cooling is the majority of your energy bill they can help save you money throughout the year.

According to The U.S. Energy Information Administration the average U.S. household will pay $986 during the 2010 – 2011 winter season. An easy way to reduce this amount up to 15% every year is by changing the direction of your ceiling fan during the cooler months.

Ceiling Fan Direction in the Winter

During the Summer ceiling fans add a cooling breeze to your home but if you operate them in reverse mode in the Winter they can help distribute warm air evenly throughout a room allowing you to turn down your thermostat.

When a fan is in reverse mode (spinning clockwise) it re-circulates the warmer air that is trapped near the ceiling down to the floor level distributing the warmer air where it is needed the most.

To determine what direction your ceiling fan is spinning and exceptions to keep in mind check out Del Mar Designs Ceiling Fan Direction Guide.

Ceiling Fans with built in HeatersHunter Westover Four Seasons 21894

Another safe and affordable way to stay warm in the cooler months is with a Hunter Westover Four Seasons ceiling fan. This fan is great for year round comfort because it features a built in heater. The Westover Four Seasons fan features Hunter’s Illumi-Heat Ceramic Heating Technology which allows you turn down your thermostat even lower or even off.

?For other easy ways to help reduce energy costs during the Winter months check out BlogLighting’s Holiday Energy Saving Tips.

How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part Three

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

In How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part One we covered the type of fan for the ceiling height of your room, where the ceiling fan is going to be installed, the right blade span for the size of your room and determining the slope of your ceiling. And in How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part Two we covered deciding if you want a ceiling fan with light, choosing the right style and finish to compliment your rooms surroundings, and the ceiling fan motor quality.

Part Three of How to Buy a Ceiling Fan is the last part of this series. In this post we will cover the final things that you need to decide before buying the right ceiling fan for your home.

Shop for Fans with High Airflow and High Airflow Efficiency

Product airflow and airflow efficiency is very important when buying a ceiling fan. You will want to find a ceiling fan with high airflow and airflow efficiency.I know for me this is a must. Florida in the Summer gets really hot so I only want a ceiling fan that is going to produce the maximum air movement possible to help me cool off. I also want to make sure that the fan is efficient so I’m not using more energy than I have to.

Airflow from ceiling fans are measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute). The higher the airflow the cooler you’ll be. High airflow depends on the size of your fan. The larger the fan the more airflow you will receive.

50″ and larger blade spans should produce airflow of 6500+ to 2999 CFM

42″ to 49″ blade span should produce airflow of 5000+ to 1999 CFM

41″ and under blade span should produce airflow of 4000+ to 1499 CFM

Airflow efficiency if measured by CFM/Watts. The airflow efficiency also depends on the size of the fan.

50″ and over blade span should have airflow efficiency of 99+ to 49.9 CFM/Watts

42″ to 49″ blade span should have airflow efficiency of 80+ to 39.9 CFM/Watts

41″ and smaller blade span should have airflow efficiency of 70+ to 24.9 CFM/Watts

I do not recommend that you buy a ceiling fan with lower airflow and airflow efficiency than what is listed above. Unless you just want a ceiling fan for decoration.

How do you want to Control your Ceiling Fan?

There are several ways to operate a ceiling fan. When you are shopping for a fan look for a ceiling fan with control that comes with the fan. This way you won’t have to worry about matching the right control with the ceiling fan.

Ceiling fans can be operated by a traditional wall control that allows you to operate the speed, lighting and sometimes forward/reversal of the fan without a pull chain.

My favorite way to operate a ceiling fan is with a remote control. Remote control ceiling fans allow you to stay comfortable on the couch and still control the ceiling fan with a touch of a button. Hand held remote controls for ceiling fans work by transmitting a frequency to the receiver unit in the ceiling fan. So if you don’t buy a ceiling fan that already comes with a remote buy a remote control and receiver unit that matches the brand of the ceiling fan and also is compatible with the model.

If you are installing a ceiling fan in a room with a high ceiling make sure you look for a control that has the forward/reverse option. This way you don’t have to drag out a ladder each season when you want to change the ceiling fan direction.

Who will Install the New Ceiling Fan?

The Big Question!!!

If you are going to be installing the ceiling fan yourself (or your significant other) you need to READ THE INSTRUCTIONS. This is very important to make sure your new fan is installed and wired properly. You will also need to make sure you have all the proper tools handy. It is always a lot easier when you have someone helping you. Especially for weak people, like myself, who have a hard time lifting heavy objects or even not so heavy objects.

If you buy a decorative or heavy ceiling fan hire an electrician to install it. When you hire an electrician make sure they are licensed and insured. Talk to them over the phone about the ceiling fan and controls to make sure they are able to install what you need them to before hiring them. Make sure they have different ceiling fan electrical boxes and appropriate hardware just in case you need it. Ask if they have helpers to help them if you are needing them to hang a heavy or decorative ceiling fan.

Once your fan is installed sit back any enjoy the breeze from your new ceiling fan.

This wraps up the series. I hope that our How to Buy a Ceiling Fan series has helped and answered any questions you might have had about buying the right ceiling fan for your home.

Please comment if you have any further questions or if you found this series helpful in your pursuit of buying a ceiling fan.

How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part Two

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

In How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part One we covered the type of fan for the ceiling height of your room, where the ceiling fan is going to be installed, the right blade span for the size of your room and determining the slope of your ceiling.

In Part Two of How to Buy a Ceiling Fan we continue to cover the things that you should decide before buying a ceiling fan for your home.

Do you want a Ceiling Fan with a Light?

A ceiling fan with light is a great way to add light and comfort to your room with only one appliance. Ceiling fans come with integrated lights, which are my favorite, or have specific light kits that you can add to your Fan.

Integrated Lights on Ceiling Fans entail that the light is built into the ceiling fan and there is no assembly of a light kit required. (Yay! Just what I like no extra assembly required) Ceiling Fans can also come with integrated uplighting. Ceiling fan uplights cast a soft indirect glow which makes them great for bedrooms because they can add romantic ambiance to your room.

Other Ceiling Fans don’t come with integrated light sources so you need to find a light kit that is compatible with the Fan you are buying. Light kits do not go with every Fan. So make sure the light kit that you choose for your Ceiling Fan is the same brand and finish of your fan. Also if your Ceiling Fan is Rated UL damp, UL Wet or Energy Star you should find a light kit with the same rating. According to ENERGY STAR qualified ceiling fans with lights page “Ceiling fan/light combination units that have earned the energy star rating are about 50% more efficient than conventional Ceiling Fan with light units”

What Style and Finish will best Compliment your Room’s Decor?

The best way to decide what style of ceiling fan you should buy is determining the style of your room’s decor. I think the style is very important because a ceiling fan that doesn’t go with your room’s design can throw off the whole design. Trust me I speak from experience. I’m redecorating my master bedroom and the ceiling fan that I currently have doesn’t go at all with the changes I’ve made to the room so now the rooms design is all off. So if your room is decorated with Modern decor then a Contemporary Ceiling Fan would be perfect for your room.The more popular Fan Styles are Contemporary, Traditional, Tropical, Rustic, Antique, Designer, Mission, Unique, Nautical, and Tuscan.

After deciding what style of ceiling fan you want then you have to choose the right finish to match or flatter the metallic hardware finishes in the room, such as door knobs, cabinet hardware, plumbing fixtures and table lamps. The main Ceiling Fan finishes are Bronze, Brass, Brushed Nickel, Black, White, Copper, Graphite, Rust, Brown, Off White, and Primary Colors.

If you are buying a Fan with Wood blades make sure the blade color matches or goes with the wood furniture, cabinets and flooring in your room.

The Ceiling Fan Motor Quality?

The motor is the most important component of a Ceiling Fan. The higher graded motors are designed to provide the maximum air movement and run smoothly while being quiet. They also last a lot longer than fans with lower graded motors.

Okay so this is where I lose it… I’m a girly girl and I don’t really understand motors in general. I know they are important but they kind of bore me. Sorry guys. So I decided when I was researching Ceiling Fan motors that it would be a lot more interesting if someone compared them to shoes, which I love. So I have done that for all the ladies that are reading this part and would understand it more or find it more fun if the motors were compared to shoes. Ceiling Fan Motor Review for Women for detailed information on Ceiling Fan motor grades.

Okay boys, I know you like motors just how they are but I wanted to do something special for you too, so I compared Ceiling Fan motors to Cars. Ceiling Fan Motor Review for Men for detailed information on Ceiling Fan motor grades.

The Main Ceiling Fan Motor Grades that you should look for are…

Best Performance Grade Motors: Flywheel, Oil Bath, and DC Motors

Flywheel Motor

*Above is a ceiling fan motor diagram of Emerson’s K55XL Motor which is an example of a Flywheel Motor.

Very Good Grade Motor: Ultra – Performance Direct Drive, Stack Motor, and Large Standard Direct Drive Motor.

Moderate or Economy Grade Motor: Standard Direct Drive Motor

Avoid buying Ceiling Fans with Motors below Moderate or Economy Grade Motors for they will be noisy, have weak performance, wobble and not last a long time.

In How to Buy a Ceiling Fan: Part 3 we discuss Air Flow ratings, Efficiency ratings, ceiling fan control options, and deciding who will install your Ceiling Fan.