Smart Ceiling Fans

Smart ceiling fans can automatically turn on and off at predetermined temperatures or when a space is unoccupied. They can also adjust their speed in response to temperature changes. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory used computer models to determine the energy-saving potential of ceiling fans, and found that raising the cooling setpoint by 4°F could reduce building energy costs by as much as 11%. View full-size infographic. [PDF - 290 KB]

GPG Findings 029, September 2016, Snart Ceiling Fans White Paper. Opportunity: How much electricitycould be saved by raising cooling setpoints across the GSA-owned portfolio? 18.7 MILLION kWh ANNUALLY, $2 MILLION @ GSA AVERAGE OF $0.11 kWh, by raising cooling setpoints 2°F. Technology: How do Smart Ceiling Fans work? SENSORS MEASURETEMPERATURE AND INCREMENTALLY ADJUST FAN SPEED.TURN ON AND OFF AUTOMATICALLY BASED ON OCCUPANCY OR PREDETERMINED TEMPERATURES. Measurement and Verification: Where did M and V occur? NATIONAL RENEWABLE ENERGY LABORATORY modeled energy savings and assessed the deployment potential for ceiling fans. Results:What did modeling of Smart CeilingFans reveal? 4-11% ENERGY SAVINGS WITH 4°F SETPOINT INCREASE, From 74°F to 78°F.SAVINGS GREATEST IN FIRST 4 DEGREES OF SETPOINT CHANGE.<$1.50/ft2 INSTALLED COST For < 10-year payback. Energy savings for ENERGY STAR certified fans will be roughly equivalent. Savings are greatest in San FranciscoDeployment: Where does Where does the white paper recommend deploying Smart Ceiling Fans? CONSIDER FOR OPEN OFFICESTarget facilities with:Ceilings at least 9 feet high and interior/desk partitions less than 54 inches tall; At least 2,000 cooling degree days and full daytime business hours; No features, such as lighting or air conditioning, that will interfere with fan blades; Cooling setpoint lower than 75°, and no prohibitions against raising it [PDF - 290 KB]

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Last Reviewed: 2023-01-06