High Volume Low Speed Fans Benefit: Heat Destratification

USING BIG ASS FANS IN WINTER IS YOUR FACILITY’S SECRET WEAPON AGAINST HIGH ENERGY BILLS AND WORKER DISCOMFORT.

THE PROBLEM OF STRATIFICATION

It’s universal–we all want to escape winter’s chill, but unfortunately, attempts to fend off workplace cold often result in astronomical heating bills and spaces that are still frigid at floor level. What many may not realize is that without airflow to mix up that heat, it’s essentially just money wasted to make the ceiling nice and toasty.

These energy bill blues and worker woes are due to a phenomenon called stratification. No, we’re not talking about wailing on your favorite six-string. Simply put, stratification means that the air in our spaces settles into layers based on temperature. Cold air is denser, so it sinks down to the floor (boo!), while warmer, lighter air from the heaters rises to the ceiling (come back!) and is eventually lost through the roof. The higher the ceiling, the worse the problem gets.

THE SCIENCE OF SAVINGS

These negative impacts aren’t just a bunch of hot air; the U.S. DoE’s Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey states that heating accounts for roughly 46% of energy use in warehouses and 36% of energy use in all non-residential buildings, so any solution that reduces a facility manager’s energy costs and consumption without sacrificing employee comfort can feel like the search for El Dorado.

Raising thermostat levels to compensate for cold floors only exacerbates the energy problem. Thermostats are most often placed at occupant level, while heaters are often placed (sadistically) high overhead, causing HVAC systems to overheat the ceiling to anywhere from 85-125°F (29-52°C) just to raise the temperature at thermostat level to 65-75°F (18-24°C).

No one needs a roof you can fry an egg on–what’s needed is an efficient, cost-effective solution that gets heat where it’s needed and keeps it there–a solution offered by installing Big Ass overhead fans.

WAIT, HIGH VOLUME CEILING FANS IN WINTER?

You read it right. By using a Big Ass ceiling fan in winter, you can create the air movement needed to mix heated air at the ceiling with that pesky cold air at the floor, effectively destratifying these layers and erasing the temperature difference. With uniform temperatures throughout the space, heaters don’t need to run as frequently to maintain thermostat set points, resulting in energy savings up to 30%. That’s sure to put a warm wind in your sails!

Heat destratification can also reduce the time it takes to warm occupant levels to desired temperatures to just 15-20 minutes, even when thermostats are turned down 10-15°F (5.5-8.3°C) overnight. This sustainable solution can lead to a 15% reduction in usage for HVAC systems, which are a colossal expense to repair and replace.

Thanks to their variable speed settings, Big Ass Fans can be run at low speeds to push the hot air at the ceiling downward, providing workers with warmer, more comfortable air without creating a perceptible draft. Because our overhead fans generate their power from their size rather than their speed, they’re able to thoroughly mix the entire volume of air in a space: something that standard ceiling fans are too puny and inefficient to do, even when run in reverse. To that point, a quick soapbox: reversing your overhead Big Ass Fan in winter kills its efficiency by pushing up against the airfoils’ design rather than pulling warm air down. This increases both energy usage and the rate of heat loss. (File this under “Never Do.”)

But using ceiling fans in winter? Bet your Big Ass on it.

SOME OF BIG ASS FANS WORKS

Every Big Ass overhead fan is engineered to destratify a wide variety of spaces. With a patented airfoil system, broad coverage area, and variable speed control, each Big Ass Fan is designed to save money everywhere from farms to fabricators to fitness centers (and other places that don’t start with F!).

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