During the summer months when the sun is on it’s mission to make our lives a living hell, the constant battle between yourself and the scorching heat can be stressful. Fortunately, thanks to the advancement of technology, staying cool is nowhere near as hard as it was for our family and friends just a few generations back.
The amount of fans that we have access to nowadays is mind boggling. So much so that it can be overwhelming if you don’t know exactly which type of fan is the best choice for your personal situation.
One of the cheapest and most efficient ways of cooling your home is to install a window fan. Although they aren’t as popular as regular fans, you could easily argue that they are better in many ways.
Let’s break down exactly what makes a window fan such a great choice for your home this summer, and if you decide that a window fan is the best choice for you, we will recommend five of the best products on the market for you to check out.
What Exactly Is A Window Fan?
A window fan is exactly what the name suggests: A fan that goes on the window. Pretty simple, right? The fan is attached directly to the aperture of an open window and it’s job is to fetch in cool air from the outside, or expel warm air from the inside.
The more expensive window fans are able to do both simultaneously, making sure that your room is always filled with clean, fresh and most importantly, cool air.
Window fans are easy to install and they are considerably cheaper than box fans, tower fans and air conditioning, making them a great choice for those on a tight budget. With that being said, just because window fans are cheaper, it doesn’t mean that they are less effective.
The main benefit of choosing a window fan over any other type of fan is the fact that the air that they generate is clean, fresh air from outside. Box fans and tower fans simply create a disturbance in the air which propels the breeze towards you. The air is not fresh and it’s certainly not clean, so while they do a great job of keeping you cool, there are no ventilation benefits.
What Are The Benefits Of Choosing A Window Fan?
Ventilation is just one of the many benefits of choosing a window fan over any other type of fan. Here are a few others:
They Are Cost Effective
Window fans are generally a lot cheaper than other types of fans in more than one way. Not only are they cheaper to buy upfront, they are also cheaper to run. Generating enough force to create cold air like other types of fans do requires a lot of energy. Energy is not cheap, so in the summer months when you are relying on your fan for most of the day, a box fan or a tower fan can cause the energy bills to sky rocket.
Window fans, because they don’t require as much effort to bring in fresh air from outside, ultimately use less energy, making them considerably cheaper to run.
They Remove Stale Air From Your Room
Almost all window fans will include two fans: Exhaust fans and intake fans. The intake fans are responsible for bringing fresh air into the room whereas the exhaust fans are responsible for expelling stale and stuffy air from a room, which is known to be the cause of drowsiness and other issues.
They Are Easy To Install
It’s often thought that a window fan will require some sort of DIY expertise in order to install, but that is usually not the case. Window fans simply clip onto the aperture of your window and can be removed in just a few seconds with just as much ease.
Are Window Fans Suitable For Every House?
Unfortunately, window fans are not the best choice for every single household. For example, if you live in an area with high levels of pollution or congestion, allowing this polluted air to freely roam into your house is not the best of ideas. It will keep you cool, but is that coolness worth potentially affecting your health?
Another problem that is common with window fans is the fact that creepy crawlies and other small creatures can easily climb between the blades when it’s not in operation. If there are certain creatures around that you need to keep out of your home for obvious reasons, a window fan is probably not the best option.
Purchasing A Window Fan: Factors To Consider
Although it’s not a huge investment in terms of the cost of the product itself, there are still a lot of factors that you have to take into consideration when purchasing a window fan.
What Type Of Window Fan Do You Need
One of the factors that influences the cost of a window fan is the type of fans that it features. I know that sounds contradictory because a fan is just a fan, right? Not quite…
There are three types of window fans available on the market: Exhaust fans, intake fans and reversible fans. Exhaust fans are what you would typically find in bathrooms, kitchens, workshops and places where the air needs to be removed. Intake fans are the types of fans that take in fresh air from the outside and propel it across the room. Intake fans are the type you will need in order to keep your room cool.
Reversible fans combine the best of both worlds, allowing you to not only take in clean air from the outside but also expel stale air from the inside. Reversible fans are obviously more expensive than their counterparts, but they are definitely the most efficient.
Reversible fans are either mechanical (you have to turn the fans around yourself) or electrical (the fans change between in/out at the click of a button). Some of the more expensive window fans will run both types of fans simultaneously, making sure your room is always cool and well ventilated.
The more powerful a fan is, the more air it can bring in and remove from your room. If you have a larger room that you need to keep cool, a more powerful fan will be required. For a smaller room, you could compromise on the power output a little bit, saving some money in the process.
The Size Of The Fan
Obviously, the size of the window fan is an important factor to take into consideration for a couple of reasons. Firstly, if the window fan does not fit perfectly (or close to perfectly) in your window aperture, it makes it easier for the fan to fall out which could lead to it being damaged.
Also, any spaces between the window and the fan will create vacuums that pull out the cool air that is brought in before it even has the chance to make it into the room you are trying to cool. Not to mention the increased space for insects and small to climb through.
If you do choose a fan that is ill-fitting, simply filling the gaps with cardboard, tape or foam filler can eradicate all of the issues that we previously mentioned.
Not all window fans will come with a built-in screen, which are designed to prevent insects and rodents from climbing into your home when the fan is not in operation. If you want to make sure that nothing can make it’s way into your home, it’s always a good idea to double check that the fan comes with a screen. If it doesn’t, you can always make one yourself out of a thin mesh material.
Best 5 Window Fans
Now that you understand exactly what a window fan is and what it’s benefits are, why not take a look at the following five best window fans for an idea of what is available on the market right now.
Holmes have long been a “fan favorite” when it comes to temperature control, and the Dual Blade twin window fan is just one of their catalogue of products that we love and use on a daily basis. The dual fan function allows you to draw in cold air and remove warm stale air simultaneously, but both fans can also be set to either exhaust or intake, depending on your specific requirements at the time.
Things We Like:
- It’s cost effective, making it perfect for those on a tight budget.
- You can control the fan speed and temperature from the easy-to-use thermostat.
- Both of the dual blades are electronically reversible, allowing you to direct airflow however you want to.
- It comes with an adjustable safety screen that can extend to fit almost any window.
- It uses up to 60% less energy than a traditional box fan, making it incredibly energy efficient.
- It comes with a 3-year limited warranty.
Things We Didn’t Like:
- It’s not the most powerful of window fans. We wouldn’t recommend this for a larger room.
- The fans are not particularly quiet. If you plan on using a window fan in the bedroom, this is not the one we would recommend.
When it comes to convenience, there are no fans on the market that can touch the Bionaire twin reversible window fan. With it’s own remote control and a programmable thermostat that helps to maintain a consistent temperature without any adjustments from it’s user, the Bionaire is a great choice for those who want a “set and forget” fan that works extremely well at keeping your room consistently cool and ventilated.
Things We Like:
- The digital LED thermostat is programmable, allowing you to set the temperature once (between 60-80 degrees) and the fan will turn on and off to maintain that temperature.
- The motors are water resistant making it safe for use even when it’s raining.
- The remote control is incredibly handy. You can adjust the temperature, the fan speed, the airflow direction and everything else from up to 15 feet away.
- It’s a dual flow fan which means you can intake clean air and exhaust stale air at the same time. Manoeuvring between the two is complete electronic.
- It has three built-in speed settings allowing you to control the speed of the airflow.
- The built-in extender expands to fit almost any window.
Things We Don’t Like:
- The huge number of settings means that it’s a pain to turn on and off as you have to click the power button multiple times in order to cycle through all of the settings until you reach the power off function.
- The thermostat could have been included on the wireless remote. If you use this in your bedroom at night, the constant on/off switching of the thermostat can get quite annoying.
If you are looking for something that is high powered and innovative, the Avalon twin window fan is probably the best choice for you. The 9” blades are powerful yet quiet enough to be used in the bedroom without any issues and the expandable side frames make it perfect for windows of any size. The thermostat is easy to use and the LED display is clear and easy to read in all lighting conditions. Just like the previous two products, the Avalon is a reversible fan which can either intake, exhaust or do both simultaneously.
Things We Like:
- Three speed settings (low, medium, high) allow you to choose the speed of the airflow depending on your current situation.
- The built-in thermostat works with the LED screen to give you a visual representation of the surrounding temperature, allowing you to keep a track.
- The dual motors are made from a high-grade copper which is designed to withstand all weather conditions.
- It can fit in any window frame thanks to it’s expandable side panels that reach an additional 6.5 inches on either side.
- The fans are extremely quiet, making it perfect for bedroom windows.
- The convenient carry handle and the fans lightweight gives it a sense of portability that a lot of other fans don’t have.
Things We Don’t Like:
- The thermostat is not very accurate. It’s probably a good idea to use an external thermostat if this is a feature that you really depend on.
- Unfortunately the fans can’t run individually.
While the three previously mentioned window fans have all been dual-fanned, the Lasko #2155A is not. With a powerful 16-inch fan, the #2155A is a good choice for those who need to cool a larger room. One stand out feature with this window fan is the fact that your window can be shut behind it without having to take the fan down. This is useful during bad weather conditions or during times when you need to leave the house.
Things We Like:
- It’s huge fan can move a lot of air at once. If you have a large room that needs cooling, the Lasko will get the job done in a matter of minutes.
- The fan can be mounted either vertically or horizontally,and is adjustable to make sure it fits your window perfectly.
- Closing your window without having to remove the fan is a fantastic feature that more window fan manufacturers should try and include in their products.
- Despite it’s size, it’s very energy efficient due to its simplistic, minimal build.
Things We Don’t Like:
- It doesn’t have a built-in thermostat or any of the other bells and whistles that a lot of modern window fans have.
- As you can expect for such a large fan, it is pretty noisy.
- The plastic it is made from isn’t the strongest.
Although it looks more like a fan you would find on a gaming console, the BWF0522E from Bionaire is a window fan that works extremely well for a fan of it’s size. It’s only a thin fan and it’s also very quiet, making it perfect for those who want something discreet and out of the way. The built-in thermostat works well, and the reversible airflow allows you to dictate where the air flows and how quickly it does so.
Things We Like:
- The three fans are independently controlled allowing you to control exactly how much air comes in and goes out of your room.
- It’s thin design and patented locking extender screens make it perfect for smaller window openings as well as regular sized openings.
- The digital LED screen and programmable buttons are easy to use.
Things We Don’t Like:
- The airflow is not controlled electronically. You have to manually reverse the fans if you want to change the airflow direction.
- The only way to use all three fans simultaneously is to run the fan on high. If you don’t, only one or two of the fans will work, leaving space for insects and small animals to enter.
Wrapping Things Up:
Hopefully now that you have had an insight into what sort of window fans are available, you feel more confident in your decision. The aforementioned window fans are all fantastic choices but they each have their own pros and cons, so the trick is to find the product that has all of the features and specifications to suit your specific needs.
If we had to choose on window fan to recommend to our readers, it would have to be the Bionaire twin reversible airflow window fan. Not only is it competitively priced, it is also one of the most efficient on the market. The airflow is powerful but it doesn’t require too much energy to run. The fans are quiet and it’s easy to install.
Overall, it’s the best on the market so if you are still undecided, we would recommend you grab one for yourself so you can experience it for yourself.