Proper air flow is beneficial for the comfort and productivity of livestock. This is why our efficient ceiling fans keep things more comfortable while saving on your electricity bills.
Many farms have high-volume, low-speed (HVLS) ceiling fans installed in their compost-bedded pack barns, and they appear to perform effectively. When installing fans, ensure adequate clearance underneath for tillage equipment to work at maximum pack depth and that the fan blades have bumper guards if close to the barn trusses. Most compost-bedded pack barns incorporate sprinklers with panel fans over the feed bunk for evaporative cooling and have fans over the pack area.
Regardless of the type of fans chosen, spacing is vital to minimize dead spots. The purpose of fans is to achieve air flows of 400-600 feet per minute (5-7 miles per hour) at cow level. HVLS fans have the advantage of covering a bigger area per fan, being more energy efficient, and being able to run at lower speeds during the winter. Even at top speed, they may only achieve the bottom limit of the needed air speed to cool cows. On the other hand, panel fans readily achieve the recommended airspeeds - but the side-to-side spacing required for equal air dispersion necessitates a large number of panel fans.
HVLS fans should be spaced at least 2-2.5 times their diameter. A 20-foot HVLS fan, for example, will span 40-50 feet horizontally and vertically. Some manufacturers may prescribe spacing at 3-4 times the diameter. These recommendations must be revised because they focus on human comfort rather than optimal cow comfort. AmeriWind normally recommends 2 times fan diameter for lactating and dry cows. Heifers, calves, and small animal applications can have the fans spaced at 3x fan diameter.