At Dan's Fan City, we consider the fan size to be the outside diameter of the blade sweep. With that in mind, before we pick a ceiling fan, we first need to consider the size of the room (see "Sizing Up the Room" table below).
Typically, 52" fans are the preferred size, but in small rooms, aesthetically and efficiently, they're really too big. Keep in mind that a smaller motor is used in 30" to 42" fans. If a small room has a high ceiling, the larger motor in the 44" is recommended over the 42" fan. Inversely, a large room, will benefit from 56" blade sweep or even two fans.
Also arm yourself with knowledge of accessories, For instance, if you are installing 16' high on a vaulted ceiling, you will probably want a longer downrod (see "Choosing a Downrod" table below) than is packaged with the fan (typically, a 3" to 4" downrod) You may also want a more convenient way to turn it on and off, than the standard pull chain, perhaps a wall control or remote control.
The table below is a general guideline for deciding what size fan you need, based on an 8' ceiling. Consider stepping up a size for higher ceilings for better efficiency and/or large pieces of furniture, like queen sized beds, for aesthetic appeal.
|Room Size||Fan Size/Blade Sweep|
|8'x8' (64 sq. ft.)||X||X||X|
|10'x10' (100 sq. ft.)||X||X||X||X|
|10'x12' (120 sq. ft.)||x||x||X||X||x|
|12'x12' (144 sq. ft.)||x||x||X||X||x|
|12'x14' (168 sq. ft.)||x||x||X||x|
|14'x14' (196 sq. ft.)||x||X||X|
|14'x18' (224 sq. ft.)||x||2||X|
|16'x16' (256 sq. ft.)||X||X|
|16'x20' (320 sq. ft.)||2||2|
The table below is a general guideline for choosing a downrod length. The 3" inch downrod is standard on most fans except for huggers. Based on the most efficient height of between 9 and 11 feet. But also take into consideration the scale of the room for aesthetic purposes.
|Ceiling Height||Downrod Length|
|8' or less||(a) See note below|
|8' to 10'||X|
|10' to 12'||x||X|
|11' to 13'||x||x||X||x|
|12' to 14'||x||x||x||X||x|
|13' to 15'||x||x||x||X||X|
|15' or more||x||x||x||x||X|
(a) - Ceiling fan blades should be at least 7' from the floor for safety purposes.
A Hugger type fan or a flush mount kit may be necessary on low ceilings.