WHY CHOOSE A DC FAN?
by Nissa Hallquist, Lumens Writer
What's not to love about fans with DC motors? They consume up to 70% less energy and run almost silently.
For those interested in energy efficiency (and who isn’t these days?) the latest ceiling fan technology, the DC motor, is something to be really excited about.
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Midway Eco Ceiling Fan
How Do DC Fans Work?
The quick answer: The DC motor starts up when a small electric current is passed through a magnetic field coil. The resulting magnetic force producing the torque that turns the motor repeatedly.
The detailed answer: The specific type of DC motor used in ceiling fans is a brushless DC motor, (aka synchronous DC motor). A DC motor uses an internal array of magnets of opposing polarity. This creates a magnetic field that creates the torque required to rotate the motor's rotor. This process requires less electrical energy, translating into a 70% or greater reduction in power consumption over standard AC motors.
DC60 Ceiling Fan
by Monte Carlo
Other Benefits of DC Motors
This energy efficient process keeps the motor cool, effectively improving the fan's life span. Noise is virtually eliminated. And the overall assembly is much more compact than standard, making for a smaller and lighter product.
The only real disadvantage of DC motors is the initial cost, as they require a pricier, more complicated electronic speed controller to run. However, the price increase is not as painful as you might think and is more than balanced by the many more years of usable service.
Rivetta Ceiling Fan
While still relatively new, the best part for consumers is that energy efficient fans with DC motors are now available in a wide range of modern designs, conceived by an ever-growing pool of quality ceiling fan manufacturers. Depending on whatever complementary lamping they might have, the majority of these qualify as Energy Star ceiling fans.
The current manufacturers of DC ceiling fans include:
Emerson: Emerson Fans introduced their DC EcoMotor back in 2009 with the contemporary Midway Eco Ceiling Fan, making it three times as efficient as a typical ceiling fan. The technology has proven so successful that they've introduced two more energy efficient fans in 2011 that also use the EcoMotor.
Fanimation When it comes to DC fans, Fanimation offerings run the gamut of design styles, ranging from the traditional Keistone Ceiling Fan to the modern Landan Ceiling Fan. In addition to using DC motors, Fanimation also incorporates energy efficient LED lamping for truly green fans. They are particularly excited by DC technology, so their selection of DC fans is sure to grow soon.
Kichler: Kichler is one ceiling fan manufacturer that has jumped into the DC motor pool with both feet. Their high efficiency DC motor is seen in a large number of their most recent ceiling fan releases. Many of these DC fans also feature fluorescent lamping, making them both truly energy efficient and Energy Star qualified.
Monte Carlo: Monte Carlo ceiling fans are "created with tomorrow in mind." To that end, they recently introduced their Extreme Green line of super efficient ceiling fans. These ceiling fans are up to 300% more efficient than standard fans, using the latest DC motor and energy efficient lighting technology. Plus, they're designed with timelessness in mind, so they'll be up and running beautifully for many, many years to come.