Tips on How to Find the Right Size Ceiling Fans

As the saying goes, one should buy small ceiling fans for small rooms and large ceiling fans for large rooms. While this may sound like an ancient proverb, choosing the right size ceiling fan ensures maximum performance, style, and above all – comfort. The right size ceiling fan will do more than just keep you cool; it can also save you money. Ceiling fans only cost pennies to run when compared to air conditioners, allowing you to increase the temperature on your thermostat and save money on your monthly electric bill. But, before you buy a fan, you need to know how to size a ceiling fan for your room.

Establishing the proper ceiling fan size for your room secures the fan’s performance and longevity, as well as the comfort and safety of the room occupants. A small ceiling fan in a large room will have to work twice as hard to cool you off, which will result in the motor burning out quickly. A large ceiling fan in a small room will create an uncomfortable amount of airflow. Unless you like replacing your ceiling fan every few months or feeling as if you’re in a tornado, choose a ceiling fan that is proportionate to the room size.


To measure a ceiling fan, first determine if you have an odd or even number of blades. If the fan has an odd number of blades, measure from the center of the fan to the end of one of the blades, and multiply this number by two. If the fan has an even number of blades, measure from one end of a blade to the end of the blade on the opposite side.

Calculating Ceiling Fan Size by Room Size

Now that you know how to size a ceiling fan, see the ceiling fan size chart below to understand how big a ceiling fan should be based on room size, and how to choose the right size ceiling fan for your room. To determine your room size, multiply the length of the room in feet by the width of the room in feet. The total you receive from this calculation is the size of your room in square feet. For example, if your room is 8’ by 8’, the square footage is 64 square feet.

The amount of air a ceiling fan can move per minute is measured in cubic feet per minute, or CFM. This measurement provides a more accurate representation of the amount of space a fixture can effectively cool. This figure should be compared with the room’s overall cubic footage when deciding which fan will work the best for each space. Product airflow information provides instructions for correctly calculating your room’s cubic footage.

Ceiling Fan Size Guide

Room Size (In Sq. Feet) Room Type Recommended Blade Span Recommended CFM Rating
Under 144 Bathroom, Breakfast Nooks, Utility Rooms, Small Bedrooms, Porches Under 42″ 1,000-3,000
144-225 Medium Bedrooms, Kitchens, Dining Rooms, Dens, Patios 44-50″ 1,600-4,500
225-400 Master Bedrooms, Family Rooms, TV Rooms, Small Garages, Gazebos Over 50” 2,300-6,500
Over 400 Great Rooms, Large Garages, Basements, and Open Floor Plans Over 62” 5,500-13,500

Step 2: Determine How High To Hang Your Fan

Hanging your ceiling fan at the appropriate height ensures that friends and family members won’t hit their heads on low-hanging ceiling fans. It also guarantees that they’ll be able to feel the airflow the fan produces since fans cool people, not rooms. There should be a 7-foot minimum distance between your ceiling fan’s blades and the floor. If you have low ceilings, or if you have regular-size ceilings and you just happen to be really tall, install a low-profile ceiling fan.

Ceiling Fan Height Chart

This table shows how high your ceiling fan should be based on your ceiling height, and whether or not the ceiling is sloped.

Ceiling height < 8 Feet Choose a low-profile ceiling fan. 18″ Minimum distance blade to wall. 7′ minimum distance blade to floor.
Ceiling height > 9 Feet Choose a ceiling fan downrod. 18″ Minimum distance blade to wall.

Step 3: Determine Whether You Need A Downrod

Any ceiling that’s over 9-feet tall will require a fan down-rod. Learn more about fan down-rods, including how to select the right down-rod, by reading this ceiling fan down-rod size selection guide.

*Originally published on Delmar Fans‘s website by Mara Bermudez.