Running an air conditioner can be expensive and cause an increase in your power bill. Using fans periodically will allow you to break the cycle of use and dependency on your households A/C. No matter what style house or apartment you live in, you can find a fan to suit your needs. There are circulating fans which can be table fans, floor fans, or ceiling fans. Fans can be mounted to walls and poles as well, plus there are different fans for outside use. Fans work by creating a wind chill effect that works well when combined with air conditioning and natural ventilation.
The most common fan found within houses are ceiling fans. When combined with air conditioning a ceiling fan will let you raise your thermostat setting 4 degrees and not feel uncomfortable. Be sure to turn fans off when you leave a room, because unlike air conditioning fans cool people, not rooms. To optimize their effect, hang your fan so its blades are between 7 and 9 feet above the floor and 11 to 12 inches below the ceiling. Be sure to look for energy star labels when buying a fan because they can be up to 20% more efficient than other models.
Window fans are another option, they work by taking hot air out of your house and provide intake air. If you have a couple of window fans they work well together to pull air through the house. It is recommended that you close windows near the fan and open windows in rooms away from the fan. Obviously, window fans placed near shaded and cool areas provide the best intake air.
Consider using fans as an alternative to your A/C especially in the spring and early fall when the weather is not extremely hot. A fan may be all that you need to cool down your house.