Exterior Fan Tips

Australians love outdoor entertaining, and more of us are embracing the idea of the ‘outdoor room’ as an extension of the home. Much like indoor rooms, a ceiling fan in exterior areas creates a relaxed ambience while keeping the area cool on those scorching days and humid nights.

An added bonus is that the breeze created by the ceiling fan deters flying insects. You can install a ceiling fan just about anywhere; such as covered decks, porches, gazebos and verandas all make great spots for a ceiling fan.

Here’s a few tips for hassle free installation of exterior ceiling fans.

1. Check whether the fan needs to be in an undercover area

All our fans display symbols indicating their use; Indoor Only, Alfresco or Indoor, or Coastal use. Fans for Alfresco areas are suitable provided the fan is fully undercover with a minimum of 2 walls. The fan must be positioned in a location protected from the water, wind, dust and salt.

The fan should never be installed under an open pergola where rain or moisture will find its way into the motor. Ceiling fans not installed undercover will be subject to weather and moisture, and most likely will not have been installed by an electrician.

2. Make sure there are sufficient walls for the air to bounce off

An exterior fan needs enough solid surfaces to allow the air to bounce off the walls and actually create a breeze. When the area has at least three walls and a ceiling, the fan can provide enough breeze to assist with personal cooling, much like a mild breeze on a summers day.   

3. Choose the right blade type

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel metal blade fans are a great choice for exterior applications as they are less likely to rust. The pitch of the blade also moves air more effectively in a large space.

Whilst considered a good choice for exterior use, it is highly recommended that ceiling fans installed in exterior situations should be thoroughly treated before installation with neutral oil such as ‘Steel Kleen’ and this should be repeated at least 4 times a year. If serious tea staining or corrosion occurs, use ‘Steel Power’ designed for use on stainless steel and follow with a ‘Steel Kleen’ oil treatment.

ABS Plastic and Acrylic

The Altitude Eco & Revolution Ceiling Fans are both IP rated to IP44 and are specifically designed for use outdoors.


It is widely considered that timber bladed ceiling fans are not suitable for exterior use. This is not necessarily so, as a timber bladed ceiling fan with an Aluminium motor, such as the Futura and Concept, are both suitable for exterior use.

However, you must ensure the fan is fully undercover, and ynote that the wooden blades will need to be cleaned more regularly and may need to be replaced.

What are suitable locations for ceiling fans?

Recently we introduced 3 new categories for our fans, which grade their suitability in different locations.

The 3 categories are Indoor, Alfresco, and Coastal. All of our fans fall into one of these categories.

These can easily be identified by the symbols below.


Indoor Use Only

 Indoor Use Only: Suitable for indoor use only.




Alfresco or Indoor

 Indoor & Outdoor: Suitable for indoor and outdoor areas provided the fan is undercover with a minimum of 2 walls.

Fan must be positioned in a location protected from water, wind, dust, and salt.




 Coastal: Suitable for indoor, alfresco and coastal areas provided the fan is undercover with a minimum of 1 wall.

Fan must be positioned in a location protected from water, wind, and dust. 

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