When To Use Fan Mode in AC? – Using the Fan Mode of Your AC in Summer vs. Winter

by Erika Mehlhaff

 

Have you ever wondered why your air conditioning system has a fan setting? Have you considered running the AC fan only in winter or running the AC fan only at night? If you want your home air conditioning system to run efficiently, you need to make sure the fan setting is correct. The fan setting you use impacts the overall efficiency of your system, as well as utility costs. Read on to learn more about when to use the fan mode of your AC.

 

WHAT IS AC FAN MODE?

The fan mode controls the blower fan component of your AC. It is used to circulate air throughout your space. You usually can choose to have the fan running continuously or only when the AC is in active use; “auto” and “on” are the settings.

 

UNDERSTANDING THE TWO FAN MODES

If you choose to set the AC fan mode to “on,” the fan will run continuously, 24 hours a day, whether the air conditioner is cooling the air or not. This setting allows for constant air circulation. It also provides an even distribution of warm or cool air. The “auto” mode differs in that it allows the fan to run only when necessary, while the AC is cooling air. There are pros and cons to each AC fan mode setting.

 

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WHICH AC FAN MODE SHOULD YOU CHOOSE?

If you are having AC maintenance done or getting a new AC system installed in your home, your qualified HVAC technician can advise you further about your AC fan settings. Whether you set your fan mode to auto or on will depend on your specific needs.

 

You might choose to set your AC fan to “on” in order to run the fan constantly because it helps keep your space from getting stuffy. It allows for improved air circulation and better indoor air quality because the air is cycled through the AC filters more consistently, reducing dust and other pollutants and allergens. Running the fan continuously “on” could result in more humid-feeling air because it is not always running in conjunction with the air conditioning. It is only encouraged to run the fan in the “on” mode sparingly.

 

Setting your AC fan mode to “auto” can be more cost effective because it uses less energy overall. It can decrease indoor humidity because breaks in AC fan use allow moisture within the system to drain outside rather than circulate continuously inside your home. And another benefit is that the motor and other components often last longer since they are not being used constantly. Most HVAC systems are designed to be run with the fan set to “auto.” It is our recommended fan setting, especially in the summer months.

 

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