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What is a Bladeless Fan?

By Matt Brady
Updated May 16, 2024
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A bladeless fan is able to propel air without any use of fan blades. Different types of bladeless fans are available on the market, including oscillating electric fans as well as ceiling fans. Bladeless fans operate by pulling air in with a motor and propelling it back out via an internal impeller. Bladeless fans are far more allergy friendly than conventional fans: they collect and spread less dust, and can come equipped with air filtering systems.

The bladeless ceiling fan was pioneered by a company called Purifan. The company created a fan system in which air is drawn in by motors, cleansed by a HEPA filter, and dispensed throughout the room. The filter and absence of blades ensure circulating air has far fewer allergens than a conventional ceiling fan. Bladeless ceiling fans consume about as much energy as a normal fan and are able to disseminate air fairly quickly.

In 2009, Sir James Dyson, the English inventor known for the bagless vacuum cleaner, debuted a bladeless version of the standard room fan. This type of bladeless fan is able to oscillate back and forth as a normal electric fan would, and claims to be able to produce a stronger and more streamlined current of air. The bladeless fan stands on a base with air streaming through a ringed portal resembling a jet turbine. Air is drawn in by a motor in the base and impelled outward through the cylindrical aperture. Using airflow technology called inducement, air behind the fan is sucked in and carried with the current of air being propelled outward. Another process called entrainment, in which air below and above the fan is pulled into the air stream, also makes for a more powerful current of air. According to Dyson, these processes make the current of air generated by the fan fifteen times stronger.

Bladeless fan manufacturers claim to eliminate the choppy airflow generated by blades. With motors and impellers, the air current resembles more of a solid stream, as opposed to waves of air. Not only is the air flow more consistent, but it may also be cooler given the advent of air cooling systems located inside than fan. The possibility of stronger and cleaner currents of air, coupled with the removal of potentially dangerous and choppy blades, makes the bladeless fan not merely a sleek and futuristic oddity, but perhaps a practical investment in an efficient alternative to the conventional fan.

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Discussion Comments
By oopart28 — On May 24, 2011

I was looking to buy a fan recently. I get pretty bad allergies, indoors and outside. I bought a Dyson bladeless fan and I couldn’t be happier with it. There has been a very noticeable difference in my allergies when I am home.

Being able to relax and go about my day without taking allergy medication has been such a wonderful change. I am going to try running the bladeless fan with the windows open. I am curious to see how much it cuts down the allergens that way.

By andromeda — On May 21, 2011

I recently bought an air multiplier bladeless fan. It is so much safer to have around my young kids. There are no blades. No where for little fingers to get hurt! The lack of blades and grilles makes the air multiplier a cinch to clean. I had a box fan before and it seemed like I could never get the dirt of the grill. One of my favorite features is the dimmer switch. The control lets you adjust the airflow with more precision. You aren’t stuck with settings that never seem quite right. The adjustable airflow is really smooth, too. Bladeless fans are a great way to go.

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