When it comes to saving energy, most of us generally overlook ceiling fans. We see big appliances like air conditioners or heaters with suspicion for surreptitiously piling up the electricity bill. What we fail to understand though is that the ceiling fans are all-weather appliance—which keeps running all through the day (and even night)—thus cumulatively consume more electricity than we assume it to be.
For years, ceiling fans used to come with the same hardware of induction motor which typically consumed 70-80 watts for a standard ceiling fan. But in the last few years, a new technology called BLDC is being used to make fans consume a lesser amount of energy, without compromising much on the air delivery. BLDC stands for brush-less direct-current motor, a special type of motor which has a permanent magnet instead of electromagnets found in a conventional induction motor. BLDC motor has important advantages over induction motor like low electricity consumption, lesser noise generation, and better lifespan. You can read more about BLDC technology here.
Super-Efficient Equipment Program (SEEP) and The Rise of BLDC Fans
Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) is the government agency that promotes, develops and monitors various programs for improving energy efficiency. They are the ones who give energy star ratings which you typically see on electronic appliances like ACs, refrigerators, washing machines, etc. BEE has started a program called Super-Efficient Equipment Program (SEEP) in February 2012 with the intent to rate appliance on its energy consumption parameter and promote energy-efficient consumer appliances. Ceiling fans were the first target of this program. Since the launch of this program, many startups have come with the idea of ‘BLDC fans’ which are usually 5-star rated and thus are highly energy efficient.
Efficiency is all about achieving the same results while using lesser electricity. Typical ceiling fans made with the conventional design are made of single-phase induction electric motor. Most of the prevailing fan manufacturers used aluminum than copper in the fan, as it is cheaper. But aluminum is less energy efficient. The end result is that most of the traditional technology fans consumed about 70-80 watts of electricity. The air delivery of these fan ranges between 210 to 250 m3/min
After the BEE launched the SEEP program, these manufacturers had to increase copper content and also improved blade designs in a bid to enhance energy efficiency. The result was BEE 5 star rated fans that would consume about 25-40 watts of electricity which were also called super-efficient fans.
The super-efficient 5-star rated BLDC fans that are available in the market generally use a different type of motor (BLDC motor) which further facilitates efficient blade designs, making ceiling fans far more efficient. Most of the BLDC ceiling fans are 5-star rated consuming 25-40 watts of energy, which is about 40-70% less than the regular old fans. Also, BLDC fans do not require the installation of an additional regulator which saves 200-500 rupees upfront. Instead, they are controlled wirelessly with the help of remote just like air conditioners.
When BLDC fans were newly launched the air delivery used to be 210-230 m3/min but with the advancement in the technology, manufacturers have able to amp up the air delivery and you can now find BLDC model air delivery between 230-270 m3/min from reputed brands like Atomberg and Versa Drives.
BLDC technology, in general, has been in the market for a couple of decades and it is widely implemented in industries needing high torque motors. What was missing so long is its application in the ceiling fans. That start was done by startups like Versa Drives who offer Superfan and Atomberg which offers Gorilla fans. They are the pioneers of using BLDC motor in the ceiling fans in India. The traditional fan uses an induction motor and typically consumes 70-90 watts. But the BLDC fan, on the other hand, can reduce power consumption by up to 65%. The latest line up of Gorilla fans consumes just 28 watts of energy.
So, we have done the market analysis and review of BLDC fans offered by reliable brands in this post. Besides the brands covered in this article, there are other 20+ players offering 5-star rated BLDC fans. These brands include names like Eveready, Luminous, Venus, Surya, etc. In our research, we have found that Gorilla and Superfan come with the best service value rating i.e., the ratio of air delivery to power. Or in other words, they give out maximum air while using minimum power. When it comes to warranty, Superfan and Crompton give 5 years warranty which is best amongst established BLDC manufacturing brands.
Now, the price of the BLDC fans is on a higher side, but if we take into consideration the electricity costs which is bound to increase with time, opting for a super-efficient 5-star rated BLDC fan makes a lot of sense. With the BEE making norms for obtaining 5-star energy rating harder, the models which are newly rated by BEE are extremely energy efficient consuming just around 25-35 watts of power. We at BijliBachao have always advocated for BLDC fans right since its inception and we are happy to know that over the last few years people are increasingly opting for BLDC fans over ordinary fans. We hope that this analysis would help you select a right BLDC fan and you would make a small contribution towards energy saving and conserving the environment by opting for a BLDC fan the next time you decide to purchase a ceiling fan.