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When Bigger Is Better: Big Industrial Fans

Although they’ve only been around for about 20 years, big industrial fans have taken the world by storm. As a more affordable alternative to air-conditioning, they provide an energy-efficient way of keeping employees comfortable in hot, humid warehouses. 

What exactly are big industrial fans? How do they work? Are they worth the investment?  


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How Big Is a Big Industrial Fan

Big industrial fans—also known as HVLS or high-volume, low-speed fans—are huge. They can be up to ten times larger than standard residential fans, which average about three feet (about one meter) in diameter. They range in size from 8 feet (2.4 meters, or the height of a juvenile giraffe) to a whopping 30 feet (9.1 meters, or two fully grown giraffes) in diameter. 

Where Do You Use Big Industrial Fans?

Why so big? It’s all about air pressure. Smaller ceiling fans, like the one you might find in your home, have smaller motors and blades that are able to produce enough pressure to circulate air through an area about the size of a bedroom, or about 200 square feet. But if you placed one of these fans in a huge building like a warehouse, they wouldn’t be powerful enough to create any noticeable airflow, especially at floor level. 

A big industrial fan, however, can circulate massive volumes of air through very large spaces, covering areas of more than 20,000 square feet. They’re commonly used in warehouses, gymnasiums, factory floors, repair shops, and other large industrial facilities. 

Why Use a Big Industrial Fan?

When a giant space like a warehouse gets hot, it negatively impacts the people working inside. These conditions raise a person’s body temperature, cause fatigue, and can result in serious symptoms that affect a person’s ability to focus and get their work done. 

Air-conditioning is not an option for most companies because of the extremely high cost of installation and operation. Big industrial fans, however, are able to provide significant relief by sending constant airflow throughout the building. While it doesn’t technically drop the temperature inside, the airflow helps people feel cooler, allowing their bodies to stay comfortable and their brains to focus on their work. 

How to Choose the Right Big Industrial Fan

With dozens of manufacturers and hundreds of models to choose from, it can seem overwhelming to know which fan(s) will work best in your building. Thankfully, Big Ass Fans makes it easy to explore your options and choose the perfect big industrial fan for your warehouse. 


Our airflow experts use computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software to analyze the space in your building and provide a visual simulation of how our fans will affect the airflow inside. With that data in hand, they can recommend the right size, model, and placement of the fan to maximize the best air circulation possible. 

Get a Quote for Big Industrial Fans

When you work with the team at Big Ass Fans, you can get a SpecLab® analysis and quote, as well as contact with an expert who can answer all your questions and guide you through the selection process. It’s easy, free, and actually kind of fun. 

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Contact us to get a custom quote