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How to clean and make best use of your fan

Fans help keep you cool all summer long, and with state-of-the-art technology and great design, they are desirable objects for your home. All fans, though, attract dust, and should be cleaned regularly. Plus, they should always be set up properly in order to maximize fresh air circulation. Here are some suggestions to help keep your fans clean and working to optimal efficiency.

Cleaning your fans

To clean fans, we recommend dusting them often with a soft, dry cloth. To avoid shocks and damage to motor parts, do not use water. To protect the finishes, avoid harsh chemicals or household cleaners. Crucially, always unplug your fan before dusting.

To dust off your blades, try the 'pillow-case' method. First, unplug your fan. Then, slide a pillowcase tightly over each blade, applying pressure with your hands to press the fabric against the blade's top and bottom. Simply pull the pillowcase towards you: all the dust and grime stays inside the case, and you can shake it out and toss the case in the wash. This method is fast, simple, and very effective.

How to store fans

When it's time to put your fan in storage, keep it as dry and dust-free as possible. Before you put it back in a box, ensure it's covered tightly. You can use an air-conditioner cover (available at hardware stores), a pillowcase, or a water-repellent sheet. Just be sure it's wrapped snugly. Keep in a cool, dry, place away from windows or electronics where water is used.

Five tips on optimizing your fan airflow

Fans are a godsend in making life bearable in the heat, but just having a fan blowing doesn't mean you're getting the best circulation in your home. Here are five tips to maximize your 'coolness':

  1. Study your space. Look around your room. Where do you want to create cool airflow? Are there doors and windows to open to help create breeze? Do you need a table or floor fan? Where can they be utilized while still being out of the way? One wouldn't put a fan in the center of a heavily-trafficked walkway. A closed bedroom or office will have a different airflow than a foyer or open-air game room.
  2. Get the angles right. Don't be afraid to adjust your new fan's position. Most fans oscillate at least 90 degrees and some can rotate up to a full 180 degrees. This rotation is fundamental to your optimal air flow, so be sure to get it pointed in the right direction. Putting fans in the corner ensures more of the room is evenly covered. But if you have distinct areas you want to cool, like a bed or behind a desk, position the fan to angle towards them. Floor fans cover large areas with adjustable strengths, and table fans can target small spaces.
  3. Create a clear pathway. Even though floor fans stand above the fray, their cool breezes can still be blocked by tall furniture like bookcases, sofas, and beds. Situate your fan so that it freely blows around all of these obstacles.
  4. Add some height. You might place your table fan on a sturdy base to give it some lift. Your goal is unobstructed airflow, and a base might help it rise above clothes, houseplants, or anything in the way of a breezy flow. A decorative base is also a pretty design accent.
  5. Add a second fan. Circulating air in large rooms might be too much work for one fan, so consider buying two. Two fans working together can optimize the temperature. Be mindful of where they're pointed, so as not to overpower the room with windy gusts. You could try putting one fan facing outward near a window while another sits in a nearby doorway, creating a kind of wind tunnel. You can also set two floor fans in diagonal corners facing the room center, and get them to oscillate in rotation.

With proper care and attention, your fans will keep you and your loved ones cool and comfortable for many years to come. Summertime never felt so good.