We spent all winter complaining about the cold, but with the thermometer inching towards triple digits, we can’t help but complain about the heat. That’s why people invented air conditioners and fans. But which is better for your comfort and wallet? It’s time to settle this debate once and for all.
The case for fans…
Quite simply: Fans are cheaper and better for the environment. On average, a window air conditioner running 12 hours costs $40 per month, and a 2.5-ton residential central air unit costs a little more than $150 per month. Compare that to a midsize ceiling fan, which costs $3.50 per month. Big difference, right? Plus, as more people around the world are able to afford air conditioners, more and more greenhouse gasses are being emitted.
On the shallower side of this argument, fans are a whole lot better looking than they used to be, as we showed you in our June issue. They are transportable from room to room, so if your home office is sweltering, you can easily move it from your living room. Fans are also easy to install and make far less noise, so you can actually hear what Crazy Eyes is saying on Orange is the New Black.
The case for air conditioners…
As great as fans are, they aren’t going to cool down a large space, even if you have a fleet of ’em. In homes that receive a ton of sunlight, air conditioning is even more essential, especially as the temperatures pass the 90-degree mark.
There’s a lot to love about fans, but it gets really hot around here, doesn’t it? Like all great arguments, there’s a compromise. Stick to fans until the thermometer creeps towards 90 degrees or you have company. When it’s time to flip the switch on your air conditioner, turn it off when you leave the house.