Philip Diehl first invented the ceiling fan in 1882, around the same time electricity was beginning to spread into homes and businesses throughout the country. Over the next decade, Diehl improved his original idea and made it more practical. Two improvements were that he made the motor smaller and added electric lights. By the 1920’s, ceiling fans were found all over the country and soon spread to the rest of the world.

The basic idea behind the ceiling fan has remained relatively unchanged since its creation. Ceiling fans make a breeze or suck up air in order to make a room feel more comfortable. A small motor contained within the ceiling fan turns the fan blades. The blades come in various lengths, depending on how big the room that needs to be conditioned is. Standard ceiling fan blades are made out of wood and are between 32 and 52 inches long. That measurement is from the tip of one blade to the tip of the blade opposite it. Ceiling fan blades are mounted at a 12- to 15-degree angle in order to properly spread the air. Ceiling fans normally have either four or five blades that have to be balanced around the fan so that it will not rattle or shake when it is in operation.

Some aspects of ceiling fans have been updated over the years. The inventor of the original ceiling fan, Philip Diehl, made a number of improvements on his first model. He started using smaller motors and added electric lights to the fans. He called the ones with lights “Electroliers” because they were combinations of electric ceiling fans and chandeliers. Fans also changed in the ways they could be mounted. Down-rods enable the entire contraption to be mounted on a high or vaulted ceiling.

Ceiling fans can save consumers energy and money. They can lower the temperature of a room by as much as 6-degrees and use much less energy than air conditioners.

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