Which Way Should a Ceiling Fan Spin in the Summer and Winter?

Ceiling fan spinning

Whether you’re in the heart of the hot summer months or waking up to the blistering cold of the winter, everyone knows the importance of getting the most out of your HVAC system. One way to combat the changing climate is by changing your ceiling fan rotation in the summer and winter months. It’s a simple way of improving your home comfort, but how do you know which way your ceiling fan should spin in the summer and winter? 

Rotation in the Summer Months

Ceiling fans can greatly impact how you feel in your home and give your air conditioner a break, preventing a desperate call to your local air conditioner repair services. During the summer, the ceiling fan blades should spin counterclockwise to create a downdraft that wicks heat away from your body. Like a hurricane or thunderstorm, this motion pushes the air down and spreads it out in all directions, creating a nice breeze that helps you stay cooler in your bedroom, living room, or basement. 

Rotation in the Winter Months

The way your ceiling fan spins in the summer and winter varies, and it’s not as easy as just turning your ceiling fan on and feeling immediate warm air. You actually have to set your ceiling fan in the opposite direction, rotating it clockwise and with a slow spin (otherwise, you’d feel cool air). This slow spin simply pushes the rising warm air back into the room.

How to Make Sure You Have the Correct Ceiling Fan Rotation in Summer and Winter

Unfortunately, we cannot see the downdrafts or updrafts created, especially in the winter, when you’ll have to trust that your fan is doing the right thing. If you remember a few simple tricks, you can ensure that you have the correct ceiling fan rotation in the summer and winter.

To tell if your ceiling fan is rotating correctly in the summer, stand directly under it, and take note of the direction it’s spinning. If it’s rotating counterclockwise, it should look like the blades are moving from right to left, and you should feel cool air directly onto your body.

You can do the same in the winter, but you should experience the opposite effect. The blades will look like they’re spinning left to right, and you’ll feel a small amount of air blown onto your body. Try comparing directions at high speed and the way in which you feel the least amount of cool air is the proper rotation.

How to Change Your Fans Direction

Now that you know which way your ceiling fan should spin in the summer and winter, it’s time to change the fan’s direction. For some fans, it’s as easy as flipping a switch, but for others, making your fan turn in the direction you desire takes a bit more work. 

Pull Chain Fans

Fans with pull chains usually have a switch that you can press to change the direction. The switch is generally located somewhere on the body of the fan. Switching the direction is as simple as pressing the switch and replacing any light covers you might have had to remove.

Smart Ceiling Fans

Smart fans may have a switch on the body or in the motor housing of the fan, but it’s more likely that you’ll be able to switch it manually from the comfort of your chair. You can either use the app on your phone that comes with your appliance or connect to a voice assistant and read off the proper command to switch directions.

Fans With Remotes

For fans with remote controls, changing the ceiling fan rotation in the summer and winter is as simple as pressing a button. Ensure that the fan is off, press the directional switch button on the remote, and confirm visually that the direction has changed.

Your Local Contractor Can Help You Operate Your Ceiling Fan Correctly

Knowing which way your ceiling fan should spin in the summer and winter is important, but it won’t help you feel cooler or warmer if your fan isn’t installed properly. RR Electric will ensure that ceiling fans are installed and repaired correctly and will even assess your ceiling fan switch assembly to adjust the direction it spins. Our expert technicians are here for you, so reach out to us today to help save on cooling and heating bills and ensure that your ceiling fan spins in the right direction.