How to Properly Maintain a Tower Fan

How to Properly Maintain a Tower Fan header image

Tower fans are excellent devices to have during the summer when it’s hot, and you don’t want to fork out thousands of dollars on an air conditioning unit. If you use your tower fan regularly, it will have a buildup of dust and other debris. So, it’s essential to know how to maintain a tower fan properly.

Here is how to properly maintain a tower fan in 9 easy steps:

  1. Unplug the tower fan 
  2. Bring the tower fan outside
  3. Unscrew the tower fan if necessary
  4. Vacuum all vents 
  5. Spray compressed air into vents
  6. Plug the tower fan back in and turn it on
  7. Wipe the tower fan with a damp cloth
  8. Unscrew filter if necessary
  9. Clean filter and screw it back on

The rest of this article will discuss these steps in greater detail. It will also discuss how often you should maintain and clean your tower fan.

1. Unplug the Tower Fan

The first step is to unplug the tower fan. While the step may seem obvious, it can be easy to forget to unplug your tower fan before you start cleaning. 

If you leave the fan plugged in, chances are you might turn it on accidentally. This would be dangerous because tower fans usually have sharp blades that can cause serious injuries when spinning.  

On top of that, turning the fan on will hinder the cleaning process and make it more challenging (which you certainly want to avoid)! When plugged on, the blades will start to turn and consequently blow dust around.  

Once you’ve plugged out your tower fan, you can move on to the next step!

2. Bring the Tower Fan Outside

You can keep your fan indoors and clean it there if you’d like, but it’s best to bring it outdoors. This is mainly because there will be a fair amount of dust flying around during the cleaning process (depending on how dirty the fan is), and you want to avoid too much dust getting around your home.

If you can’t do it outdoors (i.e., if it’s raining or you don’t have enough space), you can do it indoors. However, you should vacuum your home afterward to eliminate any dust fallout due to the fan cleaning process. 

You shouldn’t clean your tower fan outdoors if:

  • It’s raining out
  • It’s particularly windy
  • You don’t have any clean surfaces to work off of

3. Unscrew The Tower Fan If Necessary

This step won’t be necessary for every fan. With some fans, you’ll need to unscrew them to clean properly. With others, you won’t need to. You should check the user manual of your specific fan before you decide to unscrew anything.

Feel free to skip this step if you don’t need to unscrew your tower fan.

If you do have to unscrew your tower fan, follow the basic instructions within this section. Once it’s unscrewed, you can clean all the vents using a vacuum. Then, you can use a can of compressed air to go over the rest of the dust that may be stuck.

After that, you can wipe the components with a damp cloth until everything is clean and screw the fan back together again.

Once you’ve screwed it all back together, it’s essential to wipe the outside of the fan with a damp cloth. Make sure you wipe every part of it to get it as clean and dust-free as possible. Then, it’s ready to be used again or put away for the season.

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4. Vacuum All Vents 

If you don’t need to unscrew your tower fan, you can move to this step. Your fan should have vents in the front and back, so you’ll need to clean both. Start by vacuuming the front vent until you get as much dust as possible. You may need to go over the vent a few times to get all (or most) of the dust.

Once you’ve finished the front, you can move to the back. It’s the same method here—move the vacuum around the back vent until you’ve sucked up most of the loose dust. If you’re wondering what kind of vacuum to use, you can use any with a small nozzle. 

A brush nozzle is ideal but not necessary if you don’t have one. Any nozzle that’s small enough to clean the vents of your fan adequately should do the job. 

If you’re cleaning your fan outside, you’ll need to keep it close to a power supply. This might mean you’ll need to clean it right by a door so that you can plug the vacuum inside and have enough room to bring it outside.

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5. Spray Compressed Air Into Vents

Once you’re done vacuuming, the next step is to spray all the air vents with compressed air. Compressed air is essentially air that has been placed into a small space, causing the molecules to remain closer together. As a result, it comes out strong when sprayed, perfect for cleaning dust.

Luckily, it’s super easy to buy compressed air in most hardware stores, so you should easily find it. You can also find it online if that’s what you prefer. 

An example of compressed air is this Falcon Compressed Gas, available on Amazon. This can is highly compact and blasts air strongly to eliminate dust—perfect for cleaning your tower fan!

You can also buy electric air dusters. They’re generally more powerful than a can, but they’re more expensive.

Once you have your compressed air of choice, you should spray it into the vents (where you already vacuumed). This will remove any dust stuck on some of the blades in the vents. You should use the compressed air on both sides of the fan for the best outcome.

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blowing a tower fan clean.

6. Plug The Tower Fan Back In And Turn It On

Once you’ve used the compressed air, you can plug your tower fan back in and turn it on. If you’re cleaning it outdoors, you can now bring it inside.

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Although you need to turn it back on, this doesn’t mean you’re finished cleaning it yet. You need to turn it on in this step to allow any leftover dust to leave the vents. This works because the blades will push the loose dust out of the fan once it’s on. 

Since this might cause some dust to leave the fan, you may want to keep a vacuum close to the vents so that it doesn’t get around your home. Alternatively, you can vacuum the room after cleaning the fan.

Dust buildup in a home can lead to eye irritation, coughing, sneezing, and allergy flare-ups. So, it’s essential to vacuum any dust that comes out of the fan.

You should leave the fan on for a few minutes (2 to 3 should be fine). Once a few minutes have passed, you can turn the fan off and plug it out again. At this point, it should look much cleaner, and there should be no dust left inside the vents.

7. Wipe The Tower Fan With A Damp Cloth

The next step is to wipe the tower fan using a damp cloth. You can also spray the cloth with a mild cleaning agent, but a wet cloth will do.

For this step, you want to mainly focus on the outer parts of the fan, including the top. Wipe all the external parts to remove any dirt or dust buildup. Once that’s done, you can let it dry before plugging it back in to use it.

For most people, this will be the final step. After wiping your fan, it should look good as new! If you still notice debris, go over it with more compressed air.

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8. Unscrew Filter If Necessary

Some tower fans have filters, but not all of them do. If yours does, it’s essential to remove the filter now and then clean it out. If you don’t, it will get a buildup of dust and other debris, which can worsen the fan’s performance over time.  

So first, you’ll need to unscrew the filter. The filter is usually near the back or bottom of the fan, so look for the screws there. Make sure you unscrew everything gently and don’t lose any screws! Losing screws means you won’t be able to put the filter cover back on, so keep them in a safe place.

You should also remove the filter cover gently because you’ll risk breaking it if you don’t. Follow the instructions if you have them to avoid breaking or damaging anything. Once you have unscrewed the filter safely, you can move on to the next step.

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9. Clean The Filter And Screw It Back On

To clean the filter, you should first use a vacuum to pick up most dust. If you haven’t cleaned the filter in a while, there’ll likely be a lot of dust visible!

Once you’ve vacuumed as much dust as possible, you can use compressed air to loosen any remaining dust. Many filters can also be removed from the fans, so you can remove the filter and place it in water for further cleaning after removing the dust. 

After that, you can let it dry and place it back into the tower fan. The filter should now be spotless and free from any dust. Screw the filter cover back on, and your fan is ready to use again!

It’s important to note that you don’t need to clean the filter too often. Of course, it largely depends on how much you use the fan. In most cases, you should clean the filter once a month.

How Often Should You Clean a Tower Fan?

You should clean a tower fan once a month if you use it regularly. If you don’t use it too often, you should clean it once every 6-8 weeks. Another good indicator of when to clean a tower fan is if there is a visible buildup of dust in the vents.

Although a deep clean is generally necessary once a month, you should be maintaining your fan weekly to keep it in the best possible state. This means wiping it down weekly using a damp cloth. You should also use compressed air to loosen and remove dust during the week.

If your home is particularly dusty, you may need to vacuum your fan more regularly than once a month. 

Do You Have to Use a Vacuum to Clean a Tower Fan?

You have to use a vacuum to clean a tower fan because it’s the best way to suck up as much dust as possible. Without a vacuum, you won’t be able to remove all the dust, meaning your fan will never be as clean as possible. 

Luckily, you don’t need a large, super powerful vacuum to get the job done. In fact, the smaller the vacuum, the better. It’ll be easy to clean your fan if you have a small nozzle or brush for your vacuum.

And when it comes to vacuuming, it’s generally not necessary to do it more than once every month. Some people only need to vacuum their tower fan once every eight weeks, so it’s not a high effort task!

What Happens If You Don’t Properly Maintain a Tower Fan?

If you don’t maintain a tower fan, it will have dust and dirt buildup. Eventually, this will prevent it from doing its job effectively, and its overall performance will reduce. That’s why it’s essential to maintain a tower fan properly.

Once dust begins to build up in the vents, the air can’t escape from the fan as much. So if you start to notice your fan isn’t emitting as much air as usual, it could be because there’s too much dust present. 

Cleaning your fan thoroughly (by following the steps in this article) should get it working correctly again.

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It’s essential to properly maintain a tower fan if you want to keep it working effectively and looking new. By following the steps in this article, your fan should look brand new and completely dust-free every time you clean it.

You should maintain your tower fan weekly to keep it in good condition and do a deep clean monthly. Weekly maintenance should include wiping and using compressed air.

 A monthly clean should also consist of those things, but you should also use a vacuum to remove all dust.


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