DC Fans - Do I Need One & Are They Worth It?

From time to time a new technology comes to the market with little to no explanation to the general public of its advantages and disadvantages. Nor what the new technology means for the average person on the street. This is true for DC fan technology. So what exactly is a DC fan? How does it differ from an AC fan? Will this new technology save you money? Are there other benefits that you should know about?

A Brief History

DC technology with regards to motors (which is what a fan is basically) has been around for quite some time. It is utilised extensively in things like air-conditioners and other types of motors which have typically been high energy consumers. However since widespread use is becoming more prevalent, this technology has been taken up by ceiling fan manufacturers the world over.

What’s The Difference?

An AC (alternating current) fan motor within a ceiling fan uses power directly from its source to operate the motor which causes it to rotate the fan blades. A DC (direct current) fan motor however, takes that same AC power and turns it to DC via a piece of equipment called a transformer. DC requires less power to operate the fan at the same speeds. In addition to this, the motor runs much quieter.


  • Control functions are better with a DC fan, they are quick to respond also.
  • DC fan motors are much quieter than AC fan motors meaning a more pleasant night time experience.
  • DC fan motors are up to 75% more efficient than AC fan motors.
  • DC motors are smaller and lighter usually meaning a design with a less bulky profile.


  • DC fans are more expensive than fans with AC motors.
  • Wall controllers are not possible with a DC fan, they are controlled exclusively with remote controls.

At the end of the day, no matter your choice, finding the right fan for you and your requirements comes down to personal preference. Once you’ve ascertained your must haves and noted your “nice to haves” then you’re ready to make your choice. DC fans are a great way to go however AC fans are still a great option and will remain an attractive option well into the future.

by Jonathan Clark

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