Saturday, June 11, 2011

Save energy: install a ceiling fan

Did you know, that an air conditioning unit uses 3,500 watts of energy when running. The average ceiling fan uses 60 watts of energy, even when running on high. A ceiling fan can make a room feel 8 degrees cooler, reducing your air conditioning bills by up to 40%!
For those of us living in hotter climates, we are already using out air conditioning. I, unlike most people, waited until June 1st to turn mine on, and it was almost impossible to tolerate! It is currently close to 100 degrees here in Augusta, Georgia, and being that I live in a very large apartment, my cooling costs can be daunting. One month last year I had an electric bill close to $300! 
This year I swore that I would save more money by installing some ceiling fans. Costing only $30 each, I know they will pay for themselves in one month alone! I purchased two ceiling fans at Home Depot and installed them all by myself. I installed the fan in my bedroom a few weeks ago, and the one in my sewing room this week. I couldn't believe how easy it was! Check out the process and see how it's done. Be sure to follow your particular fan's instructions step-by-step. 

Before: just a simple light fixture on this 12' ceiling. This is my sewing room.

Start by TURNING OFF THE POWER! Go to your fuse box and shut off the entire room. If you aren't sure the power is off you can turn off the main breaker to be safe. This is what I did before my dad called me and yelled at me to just turn off the bedroom's breaker so I could still have my music playing. Good thinking, Dad. You will then remove the existing light fixture. Get down to just the box on the ceiling. Install this bracket (above) using the existing screws. I had to add some washers because the holes on the bracket were small and I wanted to be sure it was securely in place. 

How did I reach my ceiling? Coffee table from my living room + my ladder. DO NOT try this at home. I probably should have had someone there in case I fell off the ladder, which almost happened a few times, but ah well. I survived. Almost fell a few times though! Make sure your ladder is tall enough. 

After connecting the wiring from the fixture to the bracket, you will tighten this down. I like to then turn the breaker back on to be sure everything is connected properly before going any further in the installation.  The fan started spinning and the light worked, yay! 

Add the approapriate pieces. This cover screwed onto the side of the bracket.

Add blades.

This is my "oh shit, I dropped a screw" shot. Remote for DSLR, screwdriver, and 90 degrees while holding the blade made for a difficult time. Especially while wearing this skirt! I suggest shorts. Going up and down the ladder was a chore haha. I always make things more difficult than they need to be. Example: when I installed the ceiling fan in my bedroom, it was May 31st, Memorial Day. I was sticking to my June 1st deadline for turning on my AC, and it was well over 100 degrees at the top of the room. Imagine trying to screw two pieces of metal together, over your head, when you're pouring sweat and on top of a ladder. It was nice that the AC was on when I did this one. 

Almost done!

With all the blades attached the fan is about 50" wide. I chose the biggest fan I could find for under $40. This one is perfect!

Last step: add glass cover. DONE! Took me less than an half an hour the second time around. The first fan was well over an hour since I had never done it before and I kept dropping everything because of the heat. Since you need to turn off the entire room's electricity, I also recommend doing this during the day.

Questions? Comments!

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  1. I love you Sally Ann and how you include every DIY and aspect of your creativity and thrifty-ness in your blog! I really am so happy to be a follower <33

    It looks great! Enjoy the breeze!

  2. Girl, seriously! I love all of your How-Tos! You're just too cool. :]

  3. I love you Sally Ann and how you include every DIY and aspect of your creativity and thrifty-nCeiling fans ness in your blog! I really am so happy to be a follower <33

  4. Absolutely. Nowadays, we have to be more particular when it comes to saving money and energy. One of the simple ways to save energy is by installing a ceiling fan like this one. =)

  5. We provide Emergency 24 hour electricians service , and you can trust us for all sorts of electrical installations and repairs.