What Is the Best Fan Placement for Optimal Air Circulation? – Hunter Industrial

What Is the Best Fan Placement for Optimal Air Circulation?

What Is the Best Fan Placement for Optimal Air Circulation?

How to Circulate Air with Fans

Using industrial fans is an effective way to cool a room or space, but it's not just about the type of fan you use – it's also about where you place it and how you install it. Proper fan placement can mean the difference between a cool, comfortable business space and one that's stuffy and hot. By strategically positioning your industrial fan, you will improve air circulation, create a refreshing cross-breeze, and maximize its cooling power.

This article will go over the best fan placement to help you achieve optimal air circulation. We will discuss what industrial fans are, the types of businesses that benefit from them, and important things to keep in mind before you make a purchase.

Once we’ve covered how to use fans the right way, we will give you our best advice on what to do next!


Industrial fans, also known as HVLS (High-Volume, Low-Speed) fans, are large diameter ceiling fans capable of generating massive airflow. HVLS fans are popular because they are incredibly inexpensive to operate and create a cooling effect of nearly 10 degrees Fahrenheit! These huge industrial fans are a gamechanger for many businesses where comfort and safety are priorities.

Learn More: IP66 Drive Enclosure

Are HVLS Fans Right for You?

While industrial ceiling fans improve the environment for almost any business, there are a few basic requirements your building must have.

First off, ceiling height. To properly circulate air, HVLS fans must hang AT LEAST 10 feet off the ground and perform best when hanging 20 to 30 feet up. HVLS fans demonstrate acceptable performance when hanging as high as 50 feet off the ground but lose effectiveness beyond that. Additionally, there must be at least 25% of the fan diameter between the fan blades and the ceiling to ensure proper air circulation.

The next building consideration to think about is mounting structures. HVLS industrial ceiling fans typically need to be mounted on sturdy structures like I-Beams, purlin structures, Unistrut, or glulam beams. These large ceiling fans must be mounted on structures that can support double the hanging weight of the fan. This is an important consideration when you compare HVLS fans like the , which weighs 204lbs at the largest diameter, and the Big Ass Fans Powerfoil X4, which weighs 374lbs at the same diameter.

Proper Fan Placement for Safety

So, you’ve now ensured that your building can is large and sturdy enough to support HVLS ceiling fans. It’s time to think about obstacles. When hanging your HVLS fan, you must make sure to maintain a clearance of at least 2 feet between the fan and any light fixture, wall, ductwork, or other potential obstruction. Ideally, try not to hang your fan directly below light sources to avoid creating a strobing effect as the blades pass through the light. If you have upper walkways or mezzanines in your facility, make sure the fans are out of reach, with the blade tips at least 5 feet away.

If you have a fire sprinkler system, it is important to make sure your HVLS ceiling fan does not interfere with its operation. Here are three important rules when it comes to HVLS fans and sprinkler systems:

  • Fans should be located at least 3 feet below a sprinkler deflector.
  • Fans should be centered between 4 adjacent sprinklers.
  • The Industrial Control Panel should be connected to a fire relay system, which can stop the fans in the event a fire occurs.

It can be difficult to estimate the exact spacing needed for an HVLS fan installation. To make things easier, Hunter Industrial & Commercial offers an adjustable downrod, which can be lengthened or shortened depending on spacing needs. The adjustable downrod takes the guesswork out of fan installation!

Next up, make sure your HVLS ceiling fan is not located directly underneath any vertical air discharge, like air conditioning systems or evaporative coolers. While these systems work well with HVLS ceiling fans, having the fan directly in their discharge area negatively affects fan performance. If you are installing multiple HVLS ceiling fans, or adding to a network already in place, consult the owner’s manual to ensure the fans are properly spaced apart.


Most Effective HVLS Fan Placement

If you are wondering about fan placement for optimal air circulation, the main thing to keep in mind is to concentrate airflow in the areas where employees and guests will be most affected. This location is different depending on the industry. Many large grocery stores place their HVLS fans directly above the checkout area, where guests and employees tend to cluster. Gyms and fitness centers tend to concentrate airflow above areas where visitors are working out. Warehouses often have HVLS fans next to docking areas, where open dock doors let in heat and humidity.

Industrial Fans and Moisture

One of the hidden secrets of HVLS fans is their ability to combat the effects of moisture. The airflow generated by HVLS fans makes liquid evaporate faster, which reduces the effects of dangerous spills and equipment rust. For breweries, gyms, and warehouses with open dock doors, dealing with excess moisture is a necessity.

Talk to Your Employees

This last point may seem obvious, but it is no less important. Speak with your employees and ask them where they experience discomfort at work. After all, they are the ones who will be directly affected by the increased airflow generated by HVLS fans. They will likely be aware of areas in your business that become uncomfortable at different times of the day.

Get the Air Flowing with Hunter Industrial & Commercial!

Hunter has been in the ceiling fan game since the company was founded in 1886. If you have questions about where to locate your ceiling fans, how to mount them, or which fans to purchase, we are here to help. Chat with the experts at Hunter today!

Frequently Asked Questions About How to Install a Ceiling Fan

Want to know more? We've included some commonly asked questions about HVLS fan installation, but please reach out if you need us – we're always happy to help!

For a large fan, the ideal hanging height is between 20 to 30 feet above the floor, and acceptable performance has been demonstrated as low as 10 feet and as high as 50 feet.

Ensure your fans are properly mounted, spaced adequately, and concentrated on areas where employees and guests gather.

Fans do not actually lower the temperature of a space, but the airflow generated by fans creates a cooling effect. This means the temperature is not changing, but the space feels cooler. HLVS fans create a cooling effect of up to 10-degrees Fahrenheit.