As the seasons change, so should your ceiling fan direction. Ceiling fans are bi-directional and rotation can be altered by a switch on the side of the motor or a setting on the remote control. All ceiling fans move air, but direction matters for both comfort and energy efficiency. Here’s how proper ceiling fan direction varies by season:

In Summer

In hot weather, a ceiling fan should blow straight down. This pushes air down onto occupants in the room, creating a small-scale, indoor version of the “chill factor” that makes a windy day feel cooler than a calm day. Simply by moving air in the room with a ceiling fan, you can set your air conditioner thermostat higher and gain energy savings—without any decrease in perceived comfort to occupants. As the weather warms up, set the directional switch to the “Counter-clockwise” or “Summer” setting. If the fan is rotating in the correct direction for summer, you should be able to feel a slight breeze when standing directly beneath it.

In Winter

During winter, a ceiling fan helps redistribute heat to aid home furnace function. Hot air naturally rises and accumulates at the ceiling, where it provides little warmth to occupants of a room. A ceiling fan set for winter operation draws air up from the room below. As this air passes through the fan and is pushed across the ceiling, it disperses the layer of accumulated hot air out to the walls, then down into the room to augment comfort. To help enhance heating, set the directional switch on the fan to the “Clockwise” or “Winter” function.

Remember that ceiling fans only enhance comfort to occupants—people or pets—of a room. If nobody’s in the room, there’s no benefit to running a ceiling fan in any season. Always turn off ceiling fans in unoccupied rooms.

Ask the professionals at Apollo Home for more information about installing a ceiling fan or making sure your ceiling fan direction is properly set for the season.