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High Volume Low Speed Fan

Understanding the Benefits of HVLS Fans

Understanding how a fan can increase efficiency, comfort, and savings is necessary for determining which fan is the best for you and your household. 

Managing indoor air quality (IAQ) can be challenging. High-volume, low-speed (HVLS) fans are useful because they are mobile, destratify large volumes of air in any facility, efficient, and optimize comfort and health in unconditioned environments.

What Are HVLS Fans?

Large facilities run into problems trying to keep employees cool and comfortable, but these fans are the solution. HVLS fans are cordless and hang from the ceiling. Trip hazards are eliminated, which is important to note as cords have been identified as one of the top workplace hazards. With HVLS models, direct interaction between a fan and an employee is virtually eliminated. This feature is buttressed by the maintenance free aspect of the direct-drive motors. These eliminate the risk of oil leaks. 

Many HVLS fans have gearbox motors or direct drive motors. Direct-drive motors significantly reduce noise generated, required maintenance, and weight. Furthermore, direct-drive motors produce maximal performance while operating on fewer parts and hardware, thus, moving more air for less money. 

How Do HVLS Fans Work?

How Do HVLS Fans Work?

In the past, productivity and efficiency was overlooked by engineers because most of their attention was focused on a fan’s speed. Counterintuitively, there is a thing as too much air circulation. This inspired the development of HVLS fans in order to slowly circulate large amounts of air. 

HVLS fan blades range from 7 to 24 feet and move large volumes of air with minimal energy consumption per square foot. In turn, this lowers costs and increases comfort. Companies that have HVLS fans installed experience less absenteeism, reduced employee complaints, and boost productivity. 

During peak temperatures in summer in Nashville, Tennessee, it can feel unbearable, especially for those who work in sheet metal fabrications shops like Aaron Bowersock. Mr. Bowersock, project manager for mechanical contracting firm, The Comfort Group, was committed to creating a comfortable working environment for his employees so he recently invested in a HVLS fan for the shop. 

He commented, “Some of the benefits I’ve noticed are in the comfort level: It pushes air throughout the whole shop,” Bowersock said. “We saw a reduced cost with the performance of the fan because we were able to turn off our main HVAC unit system and rely solely on the fan.”

With the addition of the HVLS fan, summers and winters will be a bit more manageable for Mr. Bowersock and his team. 

In the winter months, buildings with high ceilings often experience major heat stratification whereby warmer air rises to the ceiling and cooler air sinks to floor level. This occurrence causes a facility’s heater to unnecessarily work two to three times harder to keep building occupants comfortably warm despite most of the heat being trapped above their heads. Conservative estimates have determined that air temperature can increase 0.5° F to 1.5° F per foot in ceiling height. This means that while it may be 65° on the floor, at roof level, it could be 85° F to 90° F. To resolve this air temperature disparity, HVLS fans circulate air so that warm air trapped at ceiling level is pushed down towards the floor.

The heating bill and employees’ health are influenced by a building’s indoor air quality. Luckily, HVLS fans are a comprehensive solution to poor indoor air quality and optimize a facility’s efficiency, comfort, and savings.