Other Tips & Design Ideas

10 Best Ceiling Fan Alternatives in 2023

Written by

Rosanne Jones

Writer, Designer


Steven D. Carrico


ceiling fan alternatives

Since ceiling fans are outdated in design, some designers think it’s the first thing to go in every home renovation. The exciting thing is, there are some great ceiling fan alternatives to consider,

You have wall-mounted ones, tower fans, pedestal fans, evaporative coolers, and even bladeless ones! We’ll explore all these fan options in this article.

Alternatives to Ceiling Fans

1. Pedestal fans


Pedestal fans have an adjustable pole, so you can change the fan height. This type of electric fan is a good alternative as it offers strong airflow, and the fan head can be angled to the ceiling for an indirect breeze.

And, of course, they are ideal for low ceilings, so if you need one for the attic bedroom, they are go-to option.

It provides cool air at a certain height, so it’s best to place it at the back of a couch. Design-wise, it gives off an industrial chic vibe. This fan is ideal for large areas because of its powerful airflow.

However, some pedestal fans can be noisy at high speeds and need supervision if you have children around because of the fan blades.

The price range for a pedestal fan goes from $12 to $300.

2. Tower fans


Tower fans are tall and slender fans that offer more targeted cooling. It can be a great ceiling fan alternative, offering more advanced technological features than a traditional fan.

It has an ionization feature that cleans the air. It also circulates the air without the ceiling fan in any direction.

This fan is ideal for apartments with limited floor spaces due to its slim design. It can fit with any interior design type with its aesthetic appeal.

The tower fan offers a safer precaution than a pedestal fan by enclosing its fan inside the plastic body. The price range for a box fan is around $135 to $799, although you can buy cheaper ones at around $39.

3. Box fans


A box fan is a box-shaped fan that can be carried around. It gives a steady stream of airflow in one direction, which means it can’t sway.

Box fans are good temporary ceiling fans because it has powerful airflow capable of cooling an entire room. It’s perfect when you have a small living room or bedroom.

It’s best to put this fan near the window to draw the air outside into the room. Design-wise, it features a grill or cross-section front and back casing for ventilation.

You can easily blend it into different design types as well. The price for a box fan ranges from $23 to $65.

4. Table fans


Table fans, or desk fans, are similar to box fans. Both are portable and can be placed on the floors, countertops, and desks.

But in terms of airflow, a table fan has an advantage over a box fan because of its head rotation. This dainty fan can provide cool air thanks to its rotation speed and different wind power intensities.

It’s perfect for personal spaces and adding airflow in kitchen areas where you don’t want to put a ceiling fan.

The small size of this fan can be plugged into an outlet, a USB port, or battery-operated, making it perfect for sleeping with a fan on by putting it on your chest.

5. Portable air conditioner


Portable air conditioners are one of the best alternatives to ceiling fans. Unlike its counterpart, the wall-mounted one, this can be moved around without any hassle in uninstallation and installation.

This portable AC performs like a typical air conditioner. It works by taking the air from the room and cooling it before sending the air back into the room.

Portable AC also vents the warm air outside, so it’s suitable to have them in a room with a window or a hole to attach the hose to a portable AC.

However, this is designed to cool only one room like the window types. The price range for a portable AC is from $90 to $500.

6. Evaporative cooler


This is another tough contender if you aim for no ceiling fan in your room. Called swamp coolers, these coolers use water to cool the air. This is energy-efficient and ideal for dry and hot climates.

Unlike air conditioners, this cooler uses a different approach to cool the air. It works by drawing the dry air in and then fusing it with cool water through pads before releasing a chilled atmosphere into the room.

However, this needs regular maintenance and water refilling for optimal performance.

The price range for the evaporative cooler is from $500 to $1600, with one-third contributing to installation costs and two-thirds being material costs.

7. Bladeless ceiling fan


Although it’s a non-traditional ceiling fan in design, it still operates like a ceiling fan. Bladeless ceiling fans are ceiling fans with no protruding blades.

Instead, the blades are encased at the center. Around it is an LED light that illuminates the room. Unlike the traditional ceiling fan, this fan is aesthetically fashioned. It’s also quieter but still makes a “hum” sound.

The bladeless ceiling fan price ranges from $200 to $600. You can hire a contractor to install this one or do it on your own with this video tutorial.

8. Wall-mounted ceiling fan


A wall-mounted ceiling fan is a perfect ceiling fan alternative, especially if your house has no ceiling, a low ceiling, or a drop ceiling. As the name suggests, you can position it on any wall with an outlet nearby.

Like a ceiling fan, it circulates the air and cools the room thanks to its oscillating capability. You can put this close to the ceiling so your child or pet can’t easily reach it.

This fan also comes with different speed levels and has a power airflow. Changing its speed setting is accessible through a remote, dial, or a hanging cable. A wall-mounted ceiling fan ranges from $34 to $200.

9. Window air conditioner


A window air conditioner is a compact unit and is best for cooling a single room. You can install this one in the window.

This air conditioner sends the warm air out through the back part and gives cool air through the front. You can control its settings through a remote, a digital display, or a dial.

It’s a great ceiling fan alternative in a bedroom as it’s quieter. However, it’s not recommended for high ceilings as it can’t cool a large space.

It’s also required to properly seal the window surrounding this air conditioner unit to ensure cool air stays within the room.

A window air conditioner ranges from $150 to $550.

10. Mini-split air conditioner


Another popular alternative to ceiling fans is ductless mini-split air conditioners. Mini-splits offer heating and cooling systems. The heat pumps in mini-splits can be good add-ons to houses with “non-ducted” heating.

Mini-splits are effective in cooling individual rooms and work well for houses with no ceilings.

This air conditioner also comes with a thermostat, which allows you to control the temperature within the room. It’s remote-operated, so you can turn it on and off quickly, especially if placed high on a wall.

Because of its sleek and high-tech-looking jackets, you can easily fit min-splits to any interior design type.

The price range for mini-splits ranges from $2,000 to $14,500.


If you’re looking for ceiling fan alternatives, you don’t have to fret because there are many alternatives.

However, it requires you to take an internal inventory of your preferences to choose the best alternative. You also need to consider pets and children to ensure they are safe when choosing a ceiling fan alternative.

Suppose you are planning to change a ceiling fan in your bedroom. In that case, you can get inspiration from this compilation of bedroom fan ideas. This way, you can have the best of both worlds: cooling your room and achieving aesthetic appeal.

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