At Spinifex we are regularly asked what ceiling fan finish is best. Of course there is no right answer to this question because the answer is a product of the architectural setting of the ceiling fan and personal taste. However, there are some simple rules of thumb many people find helpful. Here we touch on those simple design rules as well as outline a few more technical aspects of ceiling fan finishes.
There is no doubt that kicking the tyres is the most tangible way of testing whether a product is right for you. However is it the best way and are you prepared to pay a significant premium for the privilege over purchasing online? This is a dilemma facing many consumers and retailers too. And as more people migrate over to online shopping the survival of bricks and mortar lighting retailers becomes increasingly tenuous. The good news is that the internet is a great way to buy even expensive items if you take some basic precautions.
There is no doubt LED lighting is the way of the future. Nearly all research dollars into lighting are focused on Light Emitting Diode (LED) technologies. It is very promising technology that has found a lot of applications, but so far this hasn’t extended to ceiling fans in a meaningful way. Why not is a common question from architects and interior designers. Following is a simple review of LED lighting, an explanation why LED lights for ceiling fans are limited, and an overview of what to look for from ceiling fan lighting.
Australian architects and designers are increasingly aware of the importance of good air flow to keep spaces comfortable. This is usually achieved through a combination of cross ventilation and ceiling fans. But many people balk at ceiling fans when they have complex architectural feature because they aren’t confident that the two will integrate well. You needn’t worry, with a little design nous you can ensure your ceiling fans will integrate well into an interesting architectural space.
Contemporary architects and designers know to put ceiling fans in bedrooms and living spaces, and yet it remains fairly uncommon for architects and designers to specify ceiling fans for kitchens, bathrooms and indoor pools. A bit of research suggests the explanation is that they mistakenly think a range hood in the kitchen and an extraction fan in the bathroom is a satisfactory alternative. While both of these appliances have their place, neither provides a quiet cooling breeze in two of the rooms in your home most in need of good air circulation. And for indoor pools the need for good air circulation is often overlooked entirely.
As the first winter weather starts to hit Australia people generally stop thinking about their ceiling fans. Rather than reaching for the fan dial to cool your home down at the end of the day you reach for a jumper. But before your fans completely leave your consciousness for another year there are a couple of things to keep in mind.
Modern Australian architecture often has low ceilings, even in the most glamorous homes, which can make the addition of ceiling fans a problem. The standard solution is to select a ceiling fan designed for low ceilings. Another option for the design savvy is to recess your ceiling fan into the ceiling. Locally raising the ceiling where the ceiling fan is located maximises head clearance and reduces the visual intrusion into the room. This has become popular for hiding lighting and window covers and is gaining popularity for ceiling fans too.
Strobing from ceiling fans is caused by passing the blades of the ceiling fan in front of a source of light that is brighter than the ambient lighting in a room. It can vary in effect from a slight flicker which goes largely unnoticed to a bright flashing that can be very annoying. Ceiling fan strobing is usually associated with artificial light sources; however the same effect can happen with sky lights and some care should be taken to guard against it. The magnitude of the issue is governed by the type of sky light, location of sky light, season and other factors.
This blog is an extension of our blog dated 6 June titled ‘Ceiling Fan Blade Design’. In this article we expand our earlier discussion to the aerodynamics of ceiling fan blade design as well as construction materials and the consequences of warped blades.
Ceiling fan blades are much like the wings of an airplane of the blades or a wind-turbine. And like these modern applications of fluid dynamics there is a lot of science that can be applied to their design. But is it worth the added cost to the consumer and what features should you look for? The Spinifex team have simplified this complex subject to the key points to be aware of when buying a ceiling fan or ceiling fan with light.
Winter Mode on a ceiling fan reverses the direction of rotation from anti-clockwise (for summer use) to clockwise (for winter use). In effect Winter Mode draws air up to the fan from underneath it pushes it up against the ceiling. The air then moves out across the ceiling and down the walls. Because a fan draws air from a large area and push it out again in a narrow column, if you are under a fan set to Winter Mode you can often barely notice the resulting air movement, which is both an explanation for an apparently under-performing fan or a solution for an excessively effective fan.