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A premium ceiling fan should provide adequate lighting and variable speed control. Knowing how a fan speed controller works helps maximize your home’s air circulation and cooling power. The fan’s built-in wires connect to electronic control systems like light switches or pull chains. That said, you can control modern fan motors with voice activation or remote-control apps. So, read this guide if you want to know how to control ceiling fan speed.
Most homeowners know how a fan works, but controlling how fast a fan spins isn’t always obvious. For example, you might need to reset a ceiling fan’s remote to gain complete control over the variable speed. How long a fan lasts depends on how you use and maintain it, but your fan should generally last for years. So, learning how to adjust your fan speed for optimal cooling makes sense.
Change your fan switch to clockwise or counter-clockwise rotation to account for weather changes. You need clockwise fan rotation in the summer and counter-clockwise rotation in the colder months.
Some fan models use a wall switch for toggle fan speed control. This type of fan features simple on/off fan-speed control and doesn’t allow for variable adjustment. Additionally, some fans feature a dimmer light switch that offers a wide range of speed levels. Most experts do not recommend a sliding wall control for ceiling fans.
Pull-chain fan models are the most common type of fan control. These models feature one chain for light control and a longer chain for fan speed. Pull-chain fans usually offer four levels of fan speed: high, medium, low, and off.
Remote-controlled models aren’t standard, but they offer simple and convenient controls for your ceiling fan. Users can install DIY remote control kits on some fans, and most utilize a generic universal remote.
If you’re unsure where the neutral wire is in the fan housing, consult a professional or watch an installation video for your unit. Electrical work is hazardous for inexperienced DIY homeowners.
Modern ceiling fans offer smart-home connectivity through devices like Google Assistant and Apple Home. With a device like Google Home, users can activate their ceiling fan and adjust the speed with voice controls. Lastly, some smart ceiling fans offer an integrated app for direct speed adjustment.
STAT: A 2020 EIA (Energy Information Agency) survey showed that 29% of Americans in a mixed-humid climate use a ceiling fan. (source)