What size fan do I need for my outdoor space? To determine the best ceiling fan for your deck or patio, you must consider the size of your space, fan size, construction, and style. Learn more about how these facets, and others such as energy efficiency and mounting hardware, can impact the performance of an outdoor ceiling fan from the outdoor living experts at Denver Pergola Systems.

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Patio and Ceiling Fan Size Considerations

When selecting a fan for your patio, you want to be sure your chosen fan will be large enough to circulate air through the entire patio. Ceiling fans work differently outdoors, where circulated air is does not bounce back from walls. Thus, choosing a fan about the size of the area you wish to cool is essential. For rectangular areas, multiple fans may be necessary to prevent lapses in coverage.

Patio Design Considerations

When covered patios are screened, the effect of fans will be more powerful, trapping some of the air and bouncing it around the room. If patios are open, however, you’ll want to invest in a high-power fan that can move more air. 

Ceiling Fan “Wind Speed”

Be mindful of wind speed data when choosing a fan for your residential pergola. This is not the same as cubic feet of air per minute (CFM). Large fans tend to have a lower wind speed than smaller fans, operating at a lower RPM (rotation per minute) than smaller models. In this scenario, fans will circulate air well, but will not create the strong breeze fans with a higher RPM will.

Ceiling Fan Construction

Because your ceiling fan will be located outdoors year-round, choosing a ceiling fan made of lasting materials is crucial. Options made from aluminum, stainless steel, plastic, and fiberglass are best, as these materials resist corrosion and water damage. A wet-rated outdoor model is also a must. This will ensure safe, lasting operation through any weather, even allowing you to clean your fan with a quick spray of the hose. 

Energy Efficiency

A high-powered, Energy Star rated ceiling fan with built-in lighting is a great way to reduce the amount of energy your home uses, keeping your patio cool at a far lower cost than standard models. 

Ceiling Fan Styles

After you’ve determined your ideal fan size, next, you must select a fan style that accents the architecture or design theme of your outdoor space. To narrow down your choices, think about your color scheme, décor, and patterns. Then, consider blade shape and number and how these choices will impact your patio and pergola design to ensure a warm, inviting space. 

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Mounting Hardware

Most ceiling fans hang from a down-rod, installed in locations over 9-feet. A flush-mount outdoor fan, however, can allow you to install a fan at lower heights, under 8-feet.


Because your outdoor ceiling fan will come in contact with water, professional installation is strongly recommended for safety. Fortunately, your ceiling fan can be easily integrated into your StruXure adjustable aluminum pergola design alongside your other favorite pergola accessories by a Denver Pergola Systems professional.

Ensure a well-outfitted outdoor space. Contact Denver Pergola Systems to schedule a complimentary design consultation today.


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