Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ‘em) products and highlight the most enthused and convincing. While we’ve covered an array of air conditioners and a whole lot of fans, including a misting fan that plugs into a USB port, an iPhone-operated mini-fan, and our favorite ceiling fan there’s still so much out there. We scoured Amazon for the best options as told by their owners (including one who checked back in a decade later to report on a fan that’s still spinning after all these years). (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)
Best 24-Inch Indoor Ceiling Fan
“We have an old ranch with a minuscule ‘dining’ area, so small that we just extended our kitchen workspace into the area. We struggled with coming up with a lighting solution that would work with the other lights and the area. Daughter suggested a fan, and this fan was perfect. It throws just enough light, it fits nicely into our small space, and it throws off a good little breeze. We were looking for a sort of ‘Jetsons’ country kitchen’ vibe, and this fan met the bill. The chrome is ’50s shiny, the fan blades reverse. Cannot beat the price.”
Best 30-Inch Indoor Ceiling Fan
“I needed a low-profile ceiling fan for a small bedroom. I shopped in all the big-box home-improvement stores both in person and online for something similar to what I needed to replace that had a nickel finish and dark cherrywood blades to match our décor. I found this Hardware House ceiling fan and ordered it hoping it was as nice as it looked in the pictures. It was. My husband assembled and installed it with no issues. We turned it on and held our breath as the former ceiling fan always hummed and vibrated when it was turned on, no matter what speed we chose. This new model is SO QUIET, you would never know it was on unless you looked up and saw the blades moving and circulating the air.”
Best 50-Inch Indoor Ceiling Fan
“This is a wonderful ceiling fan. Installation was pretty much standard as far as ceiling fans go … if you’ve installed one, well, this one is no different. This is one quiet fan, even while on full blast. It doesn’t shake or shimmy or make hardly any noise other than whirling air. It is powerful enough for a good-size (15-by-15) room, but then I’m sure it would work for even some bigger rooms, too … it didn’t seem to be ‘straining’ if you know what I mean — in other words, there was plenty of airflow even in the corners or the room. In addition, it is just an art piece, if such a thing can be said about a ceiling fan! It really is lovely, and I’ve had several comments about the ceiling fan so far, and it’s only been up a week. I would definitely buy another (I already bought two) if I needed one.”
Best 70-Inch Indoor Ceiling Fan
“Beautiful fan and it moves a lot of air. We have it installed in the sitting area of a great room. At medium speed, it is barely audible. At high speed, you can hear it, but it is not annoying or a disturbance. At low speed, it cannot be heard, but there is a very light movement of air, much like sitting outside on a calm day. It’s just right.”
Best Large Indoor-Outdoor Ceiling Fan
“I ordered this fan about half a year ago in a new apartment. It’s a wonderful model, and with a sleek contemporary design, it fits perfectly. I really love how it looks. It’s compatible with a dimmer; I installed the fan using light wood-color blades, which look fantastic. It takes two bulbs, which is plenty. Ultraquiet. Very happy, no problems.
Update: ten years after purchase. The original fan is still going strong. I bought a second one to match about five years ago. Love them! No issues. They both spin 24/7; I never turn them off as I have a huge living room and love a slight breeze.”
Best Small Indoor-Outdoor Ceiling Fan
“We get strong winds off the mountains behind our house combined with extreme summer heat. I bought these little fans to replace larger fans where the paddles warped and then broke off. The paddles attach directly in the motor housing, which combined with the shorter paddle length should make these fans more durable. They move plenty of air and keep the area cooler. I laughed when I saw them installed, but they work very well. Now that I’m used to the smaller size, I think they look great.”
Best Wood(-Looking) Ceiling Fan
“Gorgeous!!! Great, bright light! It blends with the wood furniture in my bedroom (it’s painted). Airy, graceful, and a bit retro, aviation era, so it’s a bit modern, too. Versatile. Easy to install. Nice feel to the remote, and it can be mounted to the wall. Love it.”
Best Low-Profile Ceiling Fan
“I bought this for my basement family room, so needed a low-profile model. It is perfect for this area, looks great and is very quiet operating at any of the three speeds. It does a good job of circulating the air, and I find I am using it all year, not just for the summer months. My only regret is that I did not purchase it sooner!”
Editor’s note: We’ve sung the praises of this fan’s previous model in the past.
Best Industrial-Grade Ceiling Fan
“After a month of 24/7 use, I now have some experience. By far the best ceiling fan at any price. At $55, it moves more air and looks more contemporary and sleeker than any $500 designer fan. Set to the lowest speed, it moves as much air as some residential fans move at their highest speed.
I have it mounted above my bed. On the highest speed, it moves so much air that it blows the Sunday paper apart and off the bed. Have never had to sleep with the fan set to ‘high,’ but the dogs love sleeping under it on hot days, and I find that it takes minutes to cool down the room before bed if I turn on the AC and the fan on high for a few minutes, then back to second-lowest speed when I crawl into bed. The blades are metal, move at an incredible speed, and could probably slice a tomato.”
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