HVLS Fans and HVAC: A Perfect PartnershipMoving air efficiently with HVAC systems can be a significant challenge in today’s industrial buildings. From deteriorating duct systems to leaks in ceilings and windows, there are numerous obstacles in the way of traditional air movement systems.

To overcome these obstacles, an increasing number of engineers, architects, and facility managers are pairing their HVAC systems with a powerful complementary tool for air movement: HVLS fans.

Cooling with HVLS Fans in Summer

Even if a space does not have an existing HVAC system for cooling, HVLS fans can be used to improve airflow and make an industrial space more comfortable. But like any good partnership, HVLS fans and HVAC systems are best when they join forces and work together.

An HVLS fan complements an air conditioning system perfectly because of the way that each system works. While air conditioning systems cool down a space by dumping cold air into it, HVLS fans move a high volume of air effectively – a single 24′ HVLS fan can move up to 375,000 cubic feet of air every minute. This makes them the perfect match: the breeze created by the HVLS fan circulates the cold air, creating a cooling effect that can make a room feel up to 8 degrees cooler.

Keep Spaces Warmer Using HVLS Fans in Winter

The benefits of HVLS fans aren’t limited to the hotter months of the year. Even if you have an HVAC system pumping heat into your space during the winter, the difference in density between warm and cold air causes the cold air to sink to the bottom, while the warm air rises.This can create a temperature differential as high as 30°F between the floor and ceiling, depending on the size of your space and the temperature outside. Without proper air circulation in the winter, you might find that workers at floor level still feel cold, even with heat being pumped into the room.


HVLS fans can solve this problem by running in reverse. Instead of blowing air downwards as they do in the warmer months, an HVLS fan operating in reverse draws colder air up from the floor level, pushing warmer air throughout the building. This creates a more uniform temperature in a room, keeping everyone more comfortable and ensuring that inventory and other temperature-sensitive equipment stays safe.

Cost Effective and Healthy Air Circulation

HVLS fans great at efficiently circulating air in tandem with HVAC systems. Certain models of HVLS fans can run for as little as 31 cents a day. And depending on your HVAC system, it’s possible to increase the thermostat set point, lowering the amount of power that the HVAC system uses to cool a space. This reduces energy consumption up to 5% for every degree the thermostat is adjusted.

Other than the value they bring by regulating building temperatures at a minimal cost, HVLS fans can also improve the health of a building. Sick Building Syndrome (SBS), for example, is a problem in many buildings with poor air circulation. As air stagnates, harmful fumes and air pollutants linger in the facility which can cause health issues for workers and damage inventory and equipment. HVLS fans prevent SBS by improving air circulation which helps move air pollutants out of a building.

Another building issue that HVLS fans can solve is Sweating Slab Syndrome (SSS). This occurs when the temperature difference between the facility’s floor and the air around it causes moisture to build up on the floor and other surfaces. This moisture can pose a hazard for employees and over time can harm the structural integrity of the floor. HVLS fans help overcome SSS by circulating the air which reduces the amount of water vapor deposited on floors and other surfaces.

The Bottom Line

Although there are many benefits that come from using HVLS fans with HVAC systems, the proper fan must be selected for these benefits to be fully reaped. If you are looking to install an HVLS fan in your facility to maintain a consistent temperature, save money, and improve your building’s health, make sure you consult with an expert who can help you pick the right fan based on your facility, needs, and budget.

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