With the high-70s and mid-80s summer temperature norms in California, it’s a safe bet that your ceiling fans and air conditioning system will get quite the workout throughout the season. A working ceiling fan and a reliable air conditioner are essential for comfort. Understanding both advantages and disadvantages will help you optimize your comfort without causing your utility bills to rise through the roof.
Benefits of Using a Ceiling Fan vs. AC in SoCal
Ceiling fans are relatively inexpensive to operate. AC and DC fans are standard and easy to install. Both are easy to maintain, and while DC fans cost more to purchase, it costs around 1 cent per hour to operate the fan. AC fans cost around twice as much to run, but both are negligible expenses compared to the cost of operating a central air conditioning system, which can be upward of 20 cents per hour.
Further, ceiling fans are eco-friendly and won’t produce toxic gases, nor will they require the use of refrigerant. This translates to lower maintenance requirements and repairs and a “greener” carbon footprint. Plus, unlike your air conditioner, when it cools off outside, you can reverse the fan’s direction to pull warm air down from the ceiling to heat your home.
Disadvantages of Using a Ceiling Fan vs. AC
Ceiling fans don’t cool the air in your home. Instead, they increase evaporation from your skin. Thus, they make you feel cooler, but only when you are in a room with a ceiling fan installed overhead. While it doesn’t often happen, when the temperature rises above 95 degrees or the humidity get too high, ceiling fans are limited in their ability to help you cool off.
Conversely, a properly maintained air conditioner will cool the air within your home. However, it will only do so when it’s running. Once the preset temperature on your thermostat is reached, it will shut off the fan within your HVAC system unless you’ve set it to “on.” However, this means you will have a higher monthly utility bill. Alternatively, setting your fan to “auto” will ensure it shuts off when the desired temperature is reached, but it also means that some rooms in your home will heat up as heat gain comes into play.
Using Both Ceiling Fans & AC in Southern California
Your ceiling fans and AC systems work together to keep you cool and comfortable. Using both can maximize your comfort. Using both together can maximize energy savings and decrease wear and tear on your air conditioner. It won’t cool your home faster, but if done correctly, it can keep your home cooler for longer.
The key is to do it properly. First, make sure that it is pushing air down. Next, raise your thermostat a few degrees. Finally, close off vents to unoccupied rooms in the home. This strategy will keep your cooling costs down while minimizing the dual effort of your AC and ceiling fan to make you comfortable.
Should I Use the Ceiling Fan or Air Conditioner?
There are plenty of days throughout the year when a ceiling fan will be sufficient to keep you cool. When the temperatures are no higher than the mid-70s, a ceiling fan will help you feel cool and comfortable. However, it’s best to switch the air conditioner on when the temperature rises into the high-70s or the 80s. A ceiling fan alone will not provide sufficient airflow to cool you off at these temperatures. It may cause you to feel as if you’re standing underneath a furnace as it circulates warm air through the house.
Depend On Our Team To Keep You Cool!
For more than 30 years, we’ve helped Southern California homeowners keep their cool throughout the year. We can keep your cooling systems in prime condition so they will deliver a reliable stream of cool air on the hottest days of the year!
Contact Aladdin Air Conditioning & Heating to speak with our certified HVAC technicians and to schedule service today!