While air conditioning can cool down a space, a good pedestal fan can be a more cost-effective way to find relief from summertime heat. These fans can move enough air to make 80-degree temperatures feel 10 degrees lower while also providing beneficial air circulation that air conditioners can’t. These powerful fans sit atop a metal stand, elevating the fan head, which can be up to 30 inches in diameter and 4 feet or more off the floor. These fans can direct air on one spot or oscillate to circulate air throughout an entire room. They have multiple speeds and auto shut-off timers, some of which can be set via remote control.
Use this guide to explore the factors and features to consider when shopping as well as detailed info on models considered among the best pedestal fans on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Lasko 1827 18” Elegance & Performance Pedestal Fan
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Amazon Basics Oscillating Dual Blade Pedestal Fan
- BEST UPGRADE: Hurricane HGC736472 Pedestal Fan–20 Inch, Pro Series
- BEST SPACE-SAVING: LASKO 2535 52” Space-Saving Pedestal Tower Fan
- BEST HIGH-SPEED: OEMTOOLS 30 Inch High-Velocity Indoor Pedestal Fan
- BEST QUIET: Rowenta VU5670 Turbo Silence Oscillating Fan
- BEST STYLE: Vornado VFAN Sr. Pedestal Vintage Fan
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Pedestal Fan
Speed is perhaps the most important quality to consider when shopping for a pedestal fan, since this determines how much air a fan can move. But size, material, mode options, and noise level are also important. Ahead, learn about these and other pedestal fan characteristics to keep in mind.
Pedestal fans are designed to be tall and slender to circulate air through a room without taking up significant space. Most models are about 50 inches high with heads between approximately 18 and 30 inches in diameter. While a pedestal fan with a larger head occupies more space, it is also capable of moving more air.
Pedestal fans must accommodate the dimensions of the space they’ll be cooling, so it’s essential to consider room size so as not to end up with a model that’s too small. An 18-inch fan should function well for the average bedroom or small living area, while a larger 30-inch fan is suitable for ventilating a garage or large living room.
Material and Style
Most fans are made from either steel or high-grade plastic. Steel pedestal fans are more durable but are also heavier, which makes them more difficult to knock over but harder to move around. Their steel also means they are prone to rust, which makes them poorly suited for humid coastal regions.
Fan blades are typically either aluminum or plastic. Plastic is lighter and hence easier for the fan’s motor to turn, whereas aluminum is more durable but requires more power. This makes fans with plastic blades slightly more energy efficient than those with heavier aluminum blades.
The aesthetic qualities of a pedestal fan can help it suit a room’s decor. Some feature sleek designs with cylindrical heads that will mesh with a modern or transitional style. Other designs have rounded housings and classic colors for a vintage look—nice with country, eclectic, and casual decor.
Air Delivery and Speed
Pedestal fans deliver air via multiple spinning blades. Some fans use three broad blades while others use four or five narrow blades. Because fan blades rotate, their speed is measured in revolutions per minute (RPM). A fan’s RPM, along with the shape, size, and angle of the blades, determines how much air a fan moves.
The best way to determine the fan’s productivity is to look at its cubic feet per minute (CFM) rating. A fan with 2,400 CFM can move 2,400 cubic feet of air per minute. Most pedestal fans can move about 2,500 cubic feet per minute, which is enough to circulate air in an average-size bedroom or living area. Some large pedestal fans can put out more than 9,000 CFM, which makes them nearly as powerful as window fans. If the manufacturer does not list a fan’s CFM rating, the number of blades and the fan’s diameter can provide a general idea of how powerful the fan is.
Pedestal fans either deliver air in one direction or throughout the room by oscillating. The oscillating feature, engaged via a knob on the back of the fan’s head, allows the head to pan back and forth to cool large areas. Most oscillating fans can move back and forth up to 180 degrees, which allows them to provide maximum airflow throughout a room.
Most pedestal fans have three speed settings: low, medium, and high. Some higher-end models feature additional speeds for ultraquiet operation or maximum air circulation. The user can adjust the speed with controls located on the fan’s head or via a remote control (if included).
Pedestal fans may also have telescopic poles that allow the user to adjust the head to different heights to target specific parts of a room. Adjustability typically ranges between 40 and 55 inches high. Some fans also have tiltable heads that let users aim the fan upward or downward.
Pedestal fans may come equipped with modes for easy operation, such as a thermostat that automatically turns the unit on and off based on room temperature. Some pedestal fans also have timers that turn them off after a preset number of hours, preventing the fan from accidentally being left on in an unoccupied room. There may be a night mode, which runs the fan at a quiet speed for 6 hours before shutting off, and a turbo mode, which runs at high speed for maximum airflow and cooling power. The user can set these modes on a control console on the fan or, if included, via a remote from across the room.
Pedestal fans operate in living spaces, so they should be quiet enough to avoid disrupting sleep or such activities as socializing, watching TV, or reading. While most pedestal fans are quieter than their box fan cousins at around 50 decibels, they can still be loud enough to hinder conversations or overpower a TV when operating at their higher settings. Fans with quiet technology operate at about 35 decibels—approximately the sound of a whisper. Just keep in mind that fans with quiet technology are typically more expensive than standard units.
Portability and Storage
While the large profile of pedestal fans makes them somewhat awkward to transport from room to room, they are light enough at about 15 pounds to be lifted fairly easily. This light weight allows the user to maneuver the fan around a room to target specific areas or in and out of a closet for storage. Most pedestal fans have adjustable heights, which also allows the user to easily lower them to the shortest height, typically around 40 inches, for easier storage.
Our Top Picks
The products listed here were selected according to the above considerations to narrow the field to some of the best pedestal fans on the market. Any of these fans will provide better circulation and a cooler feel to a living space or garage.
With its wide range of adjustability, ample head size, and numerous modes, this pedestal fan from Lasko is a worthy pick for air circulation and making a bedroom or living area feel cooler. Numerous points of adjustment allow the user to target virtually any part of a space. The fan, composed of metal and plastic, boasts a telescoping stand with height range adjustability from 38 inches to 54.5 inches. The head can be tilted up and down, allowing the user to aim it in virtually any direction.
The five-blade, 18-inch fan head provides ample airflow making it ideal for bedrooms and living areas. This model has three speed modes and can function as a stationary fan or oscillate for maximum coverage. A broad base ensures this fan won’t tip over easily.
This plastic and metal pedestal fan offers many of the same features as higher-end models at a budget-friendly price. Its broad base supports a telescoping pole that adjusts the head height between 44 and 53 inches. The head also tilts forward and backward to allow the user to aim the fan.
This fan will oscillate and includes a timer that allows the user to set on/off times in half-hour increments up to 7.5 hours. Airflow modes include nature, sleep, and normal. A remote control is included so users can turn the fan on and off, change the speed, and adjust the various modes from across the room.
With a name like Hurricane, this fan had better be able to move a lot of air. It does, thanks to a 20-inch head that produces a max velocity of 1,400 RPM. While it lacks the user modes of some other fans, it’s more powerful with its ability to move 4,500 cubic feet of air per minute. This makes it ideal for circulating air in larger living spaces that aren’t air conditioned. To support its powerful head, this fan features all-metal construction with aluminum blades and a powder-coat finish on the steel stand.
The fan’s height is adjustable from 39 to 54 inches tall and is supported by a large, round base. A knob on the back of the fan head allows the user to select one of three speed settings, while a second control toggles the fan’s operation between standard and oscillation. A replaceable fuse in the power cord protects the fan from overloads.
A bulky pedestal fan can detract from a home’s aesthetics, especially in smaller spaces. This model boasts tower fan design for a sleek, streamlined appearance. The fan head has a slim cylindrical shape with louvers that conceal the blades. The louvers direct air up or down, while an oscillating feature distributes air from side to side. A telescoping pole allows height adjustability from 41 inches to 52 inches.
This model is also loaded with features, including a wireless remote control and an LED display that makes it easy to adjust the fan’s three speed options. Other settings include a built-in timer that automatically shuts off the fan after a preset amount of time and a sleep mode that runs the fan at low speed for 6 hours.
Larger spaces that aren’t climate controlled, such as a workshop, garage, or warehouse, demand a fan that can move plenty of air. For such applications, it’s tough to beat the output of this model from OEMTOOLS. With its 30-inch head, this beast of a fan can move 9,500 cubic feet of air per minute, creating maximum air circulation to clear out exhaust or paint fumes and dust while making a warm space more comfortable.
To support that level of power, this fan is solidly built with three aluminum blades and a steel base. It can function as a stationary fan or oscillate 180 degrees for maximum circulation. Three speed settings allow it to blow at its full gale-force power or at more gentle levels. The stand raises or lowers the fan between 40 and 49 inches.
A fan isn’t of much use in a living area if its noise overpowers a conversation or interrupts restful sleep. With its whisper-quiet operation, this model from Rowenta operates at just 35 decibels, about the equivalent of rustling leaves. There are five fan speeds in all, including a silent mode for near soundless operation and a Turbo Boost setting for extra power.
The plastic and metal fan features a 16-inch head that produces 2,436 cubic feet of airflow per minute. The control panel includes an 8-hour timer and an energy-saving mode that automatically sets the fan at optimal speed. All of these settings are controllable via the fan’s convenient remote control.
Though pedestal fans are well equipped to move ample air, they aren’t typically the most visually attractive appliances one can add to a living area. This fan changes that perception. It features a vintage look with a stylized rounded housing and base in two retro color options. These design qualities hearken back to an era when fans were the only relief most homes had in the heat of the summer.
Yet the shape of the fan goes beyond aesthetics. The housing and curve of the blades cause the air to spiral, allowing it to travel farther than standard pedestal fans. It also includes three speed options, a height adjustment range of 42 to 55 inches, and a tiltable head for directing airflow. This fan is available in white with chrome highlights or green with gold and chrome highlights.
FAQs About Pedestal Fans
If you have questions about pedestal fans’ energy consumption or safe run times, read on for answers to these and other commonly asked questions about these appliances.
Q. Do pedestal fans use a lot of electricity?
Pedestal fans are very efficient and use a minimal amount of electricity to operate. In fact, they can actually help save electricity. While fans may not technically cool the air, moving air can make the room feel significantly cooler, allowing the user to reduce the use of air conditioning to save on the electric bill.
Q. Can pedestal fans overheat?
While any electrical appliance presents some risk of fire hazard, the odds a pedestal fan will overheat are minimal. To be safe, regularly check the power cord to make sure it isn’t frayed or split. Also keep in mind that a fan that is burning up will make odd noises or put off a burning smell.
Q. How do I choose a pedestal fan?
Select a pedestal fan based on your needs. Bedrooms and other smaller rooms may require only an 18-inch fan that is quieter and takes up less space than a more powerful model. Bigger spaces, such as a garage or warehouse, may require a larger, more powerful fan that is capable of moving a lot of air.