Author Topic: Best ceiling fan  (Read 695 times)
sol
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Best ceiling fan « on: July 03, 2022, 01:55:26 PM » Author: sol
Hi there, fellow ceiling fan enthusiasts,

I'm considering having a ceiling fan installed in my living room. I will need an electrician to install a fan rated box and everything, but I would need your help in choosing a reliable fan. What model/make would you recommend ? I'm looking for something that can run 24/7 for days on end, be closest to noiseless as possible and that would be of the "hugger" style (8' ceiling and yours truly being 6'1"). The light kit would preferably be incandescent. I would be purchasing the fan and having the electrician install it. I am looking to avoid inadvertently purchasing a "contractor grade" fan.

Many thanks.

sol
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Econolite03
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #1 on: July 03, 2022, 06:43:19 PM » Author: Econolite03
Hmm, that’s kinda a tough one. I’ll brew it down to the big three used by the average homeowners:

- If you’re looking for a newer hugger fan, really your decent options are along the lines of a Hampton Bay. The Littletons from the 90s (made by Air Cool, have a non-integrated light kit) were not that bad. Hampton Bay also has better and more stylish models of hugger fans too from Home Depot.

- Harbor Breeze is recall-central so I’d avoid those from Lowe’s.

- Hunter used to be the mid-range homeowner’s choice, but their fans became a joke 2010 onwards. Their motors suck, but they do look nice. But the older Hunters were decent. If you mind vintage fans, the older pre-2000s Hunter Low-Profiles are pretty nice.
Most fans nowadays regardless come with either generic LED bulbs or no bulbs at all. As long as they take Edison base bulbs you’re fine.
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sol
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #2 on: July 03, 2022, 08:32:20 PM » Author: sol
Thanks, that is exactly the advice I am after. It will most likely be from Home Depot, so I will look at Hampton Bay. As for the light kit, I don't really care what type of bulbs come with it as long as it has Edison screw lamp holders, I can use whatever I fancy. It's just that I want to avoid an integrated LED module with no replacement options.
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joseph_125
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #3 on: July 03, 2022, 10:00:57 PM » Author: joseph_125
I'm not sure if this is still a thing but some fans use candelabra or intermediate lampholders now. Ironically you can still get incandescent lamps that will fit those so it's more of a FYI.

If it's not too much work/expensive, I would look into getting a second switched wire up at the fan box too (replace wiring between switch box and fan ceiling box with 14/3). It would be handy if you every wanted to have a separate fan/light wall switch instead of using the pull chains or using a remote.
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sol
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #4 on: July 03, 2022, 10:39:43 PM » Author: sol
The 3 wire between the box and the wall switch is one of the reasons I am hiring an electrician for this project. I hope that it is possible...
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LightsoftheWest
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #5 on: July 03, 2022, 11:15:21 PM » Author: LightsoftheWest
The Hampton Bay Glendale or Hampton Bay Sidlow are probably going to be your best options. The Sidlow no doubt looks nicer, but it has plastic shades. The Glendale, on the other hand, has real glass shades. Another thing about the Glendale is that it comes with a downrod, but it can be directly installed on the canopy for flush mounting.
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Gearjammer
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #6 on: July 04, 2022, 01:07:28 AM » Author: Gearjammer
The 3 wire between the box and the wall switch is one of the reasons I am hiring an electrician for this project. I hope that it is possible...
As an electrician now for 20 years it's an easy matter to run a 3 conductor cable from the switches to the fan/light.
And it is something I always recommend to my customers to have the fan on one switch and the light on its own switch.
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sol
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #7 on: July 04, 2022, 06:10:20 AM » Author: sol
@LightsoftheWest : I'm thinking of the Glendale. I quite like the mounting options, too !

@Gearjammer : While it would be a major undertaking for me, you are right that it should be trivial for an electrician and that is why I won't attempt it. I don't like situations when a single switch controls all power to the ceiling fan (homeowner install special).
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joseph_125
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #8 on: July 04, 2022, 09:31:57 PM » Author: joseph_125
@sol It all depends on where your room is in the house, how the ceiling box and switches are wired, and how the access above the ceiling is. I've seen one case where the ceiling box is wired with 14/3 as it also doubles as a splice box for the receptacles in the room. Interestingly there's a neutral in the switch box too. Odd method of wiring but it does mean you have a unswitched hot up in the ceiling box.

A second floor room with the light switch on a interior wall is probably one of the easier scenarios as you can access the attic to run the wiring from the ceiling box, and then fish it down the wall. Then just abandon the existing cable. I
A first floor room with the switch on a exterior wall would be hard to fish wiring through and will probably require some small access holes to be cut in the ceiling and wall.

This is one of the advantages of houses wired with conduit as there's probably enough room to pull a second hot between the box and switch. 

You can also get wall switches that let you switch fan and light separately without running a extra wire. Those usually require the installation of a module in the fan canopy where the switching is done with the wall switch acting as a remote that's paired the fan module using RF or powerline communication.
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sol
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #9 on: July 04, 2022, 09:57:14 PM » Author: sol
Yes, this is a first floor room and the switch is on an inside wall. The wall is relatively small but load bearing so it has lots of studs. If access holes need to be cut, so be it. I just prefer to have a pro do it rather than me...

I don't remember how the switch is wired, I plan on having a look inside the switch box just so that I know beforehand. If for some reason it doesn't work, I plan on either looking into one of those RF module switches you mention (and compatible controller) or simply wiring the standard switch to the light only and use the pull chain to switch the fan. Either way, my plan is to avoid having the switch control everything at once.
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #10 on: July 05, 2022, 04:20:19 AM » Author: joseph_125
Fair enough, fishing wires through a finished space is enough of a PITA for me to either avoid doing it, get someone to do it for it, or to just use Wiremold and live with the industrial look instead.

Definitely peek into the switch and ceiling boxes if you're ok with doing it. If you're lucky, sometimes the rough in was done using 14/3 with the red wire capped off on each end. In those cases either the previous owner had a fan or the rough one was done with 14/3 as a value added feature.
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sol
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #11 on: July 05, 2022, 06:29:18 AM » Author: sol
I know for sure that it’s not 14/3 in the switch loop. There might not even be a switch loop as it might be fed through the switch from the basement. I’ll have to take a look when time permits. I’m not quite ready for this because I have other work for the electrician but I need to clean up my basement first…
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #12 on: July 05, 2022, 12:44:42 PM » Author: HM1000
A vintage brass ceiling fan
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Gearjammer
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #13 on: July 06, 2022, 10:42:40 PM » Author: Gearjammer
I'm just trying to understand.
Do you mean you already have a box in the ceiling for a light that's connected to a nearby switch?
And you want the electrician to replace the box with a fan rated box as well as add a second switch for the light on the fan correct?

Changing the existing ceiling box to a fan box is not difficult so long as you don't have several cables in the box then it becomes a problem.

As for the switch again changing the box to a double gang isn't difficult so long as there isn't several cables involved.
If there are the existing box can be left in place and a double switch (2 switches on the same strap) can be used without changing the box.

The best scenario is if the feed comes to the switch first then continues up to the ceiling.
If that's the case then the correct boxes should be easy to install and a new 14/3 run from the switches to the fan/light.

As for getting the cable there electricians have several tricks of the trade to minimize cutting into the wall.
That's when I get out my "fish sticks" and in many cases never have to cut into the wall.

Fan boxes can be installed from inside the room by simply using an adjustable wrench.
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Cole D.
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Re: Best ceiling fan « Reply #14 on: July 06, 2022, 11:07:13 PM » Author: Cole D.
Hugger ceiling fans generally do not move as much air as ones mounted via a downrod, and most of them aren't among the most powerful.

Generally a bigger motor will blow more air. A 188 mm or 210 mm spinner motor is considered a good size. 172 mm is adequate in many cases.
Generally for a 52" fan a 153 mm motor would be considered underpowered.

Emerson and Casablanca used to use K55 or XLP stack type motors, similar to what you see in a central HVAC unit. The blades mounted via a rubber
flywheel to minimize vibration. These were some of the best in the industry but these types of motors are no longer being used in ceiling fans
to my knowledge.


I second that Hunter and Casablanca's quality these days is not that good. The Hunter Original ceiling fan however, is still a good, well built fan.
It's the only cast iron old style ceiling fan on the market still. It is very heavy however and it cannot be flush mounted. It's also very expensive.
It does require periodic oiling, it does not have permanently lubricated bearings. Unfortunately Emerson has sold off its ceiling fan business a few years ago
and it's now been shut down.

I have heard very good things about the Gulf Coast Dixie Belle ceiling fan and the Minka Aire Supra ceiling fans. These both
are not huggers but they can be flush mounted at about the same depth as a hugger. Both of these fans use 188mm x 15mm spinner
motors. These fans are somewhat expensive, however I believe the Supra can be found on sale below $200. Lots of finish and blade
styles to choose from with these two fans. They can be either 52" or smaller depending on the blades you want.
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