Do I Need a Wet Rated Ceiling Fan for a Covered Patio?

Ceiling fans are helpful in providing comfort during the scorching days of summer and they are offering it in their small sizes. They have a variation of indoor and outdoor ceiling fans but what do you need for a covered patio? Let’s find out.

For a covered patio or other covered outdoor areas, you have to go for an outdoor ceiling fan. The fan should have either wet or a damp-rating. Indoor or dry-rated ceiling fans will not be an ideal choice for this environment because of their exposure to moisture can result in rust, corrosion or electrical fires. 

Differences between an indoor and outdoor rated fan are very few, including the blades, the materials used, and the motor. You should keep reading it to learn more about the differences between an indoor and outdoor ceiling fans and how to decide to get for your patio.

What Is an Outdoor Rated Ceiling Fan?

An outdoor rated ceiling fans is designed with high-quality, weather resistant materials to provide ideal performance in any situation. Outdoor ceiling fans are also considered as either wet-rated or damp-rated. They are perfect for outdoor use and ideal for moisture-rich climates.

The biggest benefit of an outdoor ceiling fan is that it provides you cooling experience without using an air conditioner. Outdoor ceiling fans are very versatile and the design options they have are industrial and natural.

A damp-rated or wet-rated ceiling fan is ideal for a covered patio. You should never use a dry-rated fan. It’s imperative to opt for a safe option to avoid inconveniences and major safety concerns.

A damp rated fan is enclosed enough for covered patios. However, a wet-rated selection will come with long-lasting, durable and potentially safest fan.

What Are Outdoor Rated Ceiling Fans Made Of?

Wet- and damp-rated outdoor ceiling fans are made from special plastic to provide optimum performance in extreme weather conditions. The materials used to manufacture outdoor units are selected carefully to avoid rust, corrosion, deterioration and specifically – electrical fires.

The high quality and durable material also offer damage resistance. Other materials such as stainless steel and powder-coated paint to prevent rust and UV rays.

Can Outdoor Ceiling Fans Be Exposed to Rain?

Yes, outdoor ceiling fans can be exposed to rain if they are manufactured for it. Outdoor ceiling fans are either damp-rated or wet-rated. A damp-rated outdoor ceiling fan will not be an ideal option for areas exposed to rain. Only wet-rated outdoor ceiling fans can be used if they are going to exposed to rain.

To understand this better, we will discuss the rating system used for ceiling fans. Like all products, ceiling fans also go through safety tests to get approved and sold to the public. Ceiling fans have to go through one of the safety requirements that is a rating on the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) system.

The UL Rating System

Underwriters Laboratories is a non-profit organization that go through the research on the safety features of the items independently. They have designed a rating system for ceiling fans and other customer products.

Ceiling fans fall into 3 categories in the UL system including: 

  • Dry-rated
  • Wet-rated
  • Damp-rated

Dry-Rated or Indoor Ceiling Fans

Indoor ceiling fans can be safe if they are used indoors. Dry-rated indoor fans require arid environments with no contact with water, so they can be installed in some rooms. Bedrooms, kitchens, playrooms, living areas, and finished basements are the options where you can use dry-rated fans.

Any space that regularly get into contact with moisture such as a laundry room, bathroom, unfinished basement, must have a damp-rated fan.

Wet-Rated Ceiling Fans

Mostly, general-purpose ceiling fans lie in the wet-rated category of fans. They are ideal in areas like patios, gazebos, unscreened porches, waterfront areas and so on. Wet-rated ceiling fans are safe from rain, snow, sleet, water, and extreme temperatures.

They can be used outside as well as inside as they are made with the materials that protect it from the damage and elements.

Damp-Rated Ceiling Fans

You can use these units in moisture-rich environments safely including bathrooms, garages, laundry rooms and screened-in patios and porches. The design of these fans can withstand light moisture but cannot bear heavy rain.

These fans are more durable as compared to indoor fans but not as versatile as wet-rated fans.

Recommended: Can outdoor ceiling fans be exposed to rain?

Indoor Vs Outdoor Ceiling Fans

The main difference between outdoor and indoor ceiling fans is their interior design. Outdoor ceiling fans come with all the capacity of indoor fans with additional features including holding up against bad weather and moisture. However, indoor ceiling fans do not contain the capabilities of indoor units.

A ceiling fan has multiple parts:

  • An electric motor
  • Fan Blades
  • Safety cable
  • Flywheel
  • Ceiling mount
  • Sometimes, a lamp too

Indoor and outdoor ceiling fans containall the similar elements, but the parts of an outdoor fan can fight moisture, extreme temperatures, and weather damage.

The motor, motor housing, blades, safety cable, and ceiling mount are the points where you will see a difference between indoor and outdoor options. Generally, they can better deal with the elements.

Recommended: Differences between indoor and outdoor ceiling fans

Can Indoor Ceiling Fans Be Used Outdoors?

Indoor ceiling fans cannot be used outdoors because it can be dangerous. Indoor fans are most likely to get rust, deterioration and electrical fires without using the right design and material. Indoor fans can only work well in bedrooms, living area, kitchens, and finished basements. 

Suggested Read here: Can indoor ceiling fans be used outdoors?

Can Outdoor Ceiling Fans Be Used Indoors?

You can use outdoor ceiling fans indoors, and they will work the same as they work outside. Alternatively, an indoor fan can be installed in certain climates whereas outdoor fans can work anywhere and can provide additional benefits because of their modified durability.

However, they will consume more energy.

Final Words

It is an exciting and stressful task to decorate an outdoor covered patio for any house owner. You will feel comfortable and keep the hot temperatures away by choosing the safest fan option.

The best ceiling fan for a covered patio is either a wet-rated or a damp-rated unit. The design and materials of the outdoor fans allow them to withstand heavy moisture and exposure to the elements. Dry-rated or indoor ceiling fans should not be installed in a covered patio.

By using the right outdoor ceiling fan to your covered patio, you will make your guest comfortable and safe.

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