How To Position Fans To Cool A Room – A Quick Guide

When you are thinking of buying and using one or more fans to cool a room in your home, you are most probably wondering what type of fan will be the best and how and where should you put the fans to be most effective. You will have many questions like, for instance, do I put the fan on the floor or in a window? Or must I install a wall-mounted fan? 

There are a wide variety of fans available – from large wall-mounted ones to smaller table models. You’ll first have to determine why you need a fan and where will you have space to place it before buying any fan. Simple science often helps you to determine where and how to place the fan to cool the room down. 

In this article, we’ll have a brief look at aspects you have to keep in mind when buying and placing your new fan. We hope the article will help you to purchase and place the right fan to suit your needs. 

Simple things to think about when buying a fan to place in your home

During summer you expect heat. The heat can be a result of the sun or sticky humidity. It is also a fact that few people enjoy being too hot. Especially when you are at home in a room, you don’t want to feel the heat all the time. You can increase the air circulation in your home by using a fan. And increased air circulation helps make your home feel cooler. 

You can also use extra fans with your air conditioner and save energy by putting the air conditioner on a lower setting. This is possible because fans can swiftly move cold air from room to room. 

Find the fan that will be the best and decide where to place it

To help you to buy the right fan for what you need and to place it where it will be most effective there are guidelines that you can follow and features you can look for to ensure that you buy an efficient and effective fan.

Determine what you need

Before you buy a new fan decide what you need from a fan, and very important – where will the fan fit into your space. As fans come in many shapes and size it is definitely not a question of on-model-fits-all. 

The size of the room, the tallness of the ceiling, and the number of windows in the room are all factors to keep in mind. Whether you have space to put it on the floor, in a window, or have to mount it onto a wall are all aspects that will play a role. 

 Large spaces like living rooms and dens usually benefit from a tower fan, pedestal fan, wall-mount fan, or an air circulator fan, while bedrooms need smaller fans. Always remember, the place where you want to place your fan will influence the choice of fan that you are going to purchase.

The science about warm and cold air helps to decide where to place the fan

According to basic science, cold air is naturally heavier than warm air. This means that cold air will sink to the area near the floor and the hot air will occupy the higher space in the room. If the room has no natural breeze or a fan blowing, the hot air will always be in the upper part of the space. 

But although cold air is heavier than warm air, the cold air is still relatively light and can easily be influenced and moved by outside sources. If you place and activate a fan correctly in such a room, the fan will disrupt that balance. The fan can force the cooler air to go where you want it to go.

A fan placed on the ceiling in a room
The ceiling is the best place to put a fan.

Best place for the fan on the floor

The best is to place the fan in such a way that it faces the opposite wall from where most of the activity takes place in the room.  With the fan blowing in this way it will drive the air to the surface. There it will bounce off and mingle with the rest of the air and cool the space. 

Ideally, if a lower temperature in the room is your main goal, you have to put the fan as low as possible on the ground. From the low position, it scoops up all the refreshing coolness along the way.

The fan in a window 

It is not necessarily a good idea to open a window to get fresh air into your room on a warm day. By opening a window you can actually make the room more uncomfortable.  Too much heat, too many bugs, and too much noise can get into the room via the open window. 


But there is a solution available – a box fan or a fan specifically designed for use in a window can be the solution. If the box fan is put correctly in the window the fresh air will come into the room and circulate faster and will cool down the intense heat in the room. Most box fans are equipped with quiet settings which create a gentle white noise, drowning out street noise. Circulated air also discourages bugs to come into the room. 

Furniture can determine the placing of the fan

The furniture in your room will to a great extent determine where you should put your fan. Your room’s décor and the arrangement of the furniture must not block the airflow from the fan. Window fans, for instance, should not be blocked by furniture or curtains.

Also, always point fans away from tables or desks with loose papers or light objects, and ensure that the electric cable will not impede walkways.

 A wall-mounted fan must be placed high above anything that can block the airflow. If it has a tilt-head, aim it in such a way that the force of the fan can be pointed in the direction where you need it most.


Fans are useful to cool down rooms when the outside temperature is high. However, the effectiveness of the fans depends on the type of fan and where you’ve put it in the room. By using the information given in this article, we are sure you will get the right fan and place it correctly in your home.   

Charles John

Experienced HVAC technician with 8 years of experience in the industry. Capable of handling all sorts of heating and cooling equipment as well as proficient in operational management, construction-related techniques such as preventative maintenance, electrical troubleshooting and AutoCAD

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