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What is the difference between industrial fan and commercial fan?

Author: yong

Nov. 28, 2023

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In the world of centrifugal fans and blowers for industrial process applications, “what’s the difference between a fan and a blower” is a trick question. That’s because there actually is no difference at all. That’s right. Whether you need an industrial fan or blower for your operation, the product designs are the same.

How can that be? Well, the truth is that in industrial process operations, a fan or blower is not defined by the impeller style or design itself. Instead, the difference is generally which side of the fan is offering the resistance that the fan must overcome to keep the molecules moving and the process working.

The Answer to the Question: What’s the Difference Between a Blower and a Fan?

The real answer to the question “what’s the difference between a fan and a blower” is this.

  • Industrial induced draft fans generally suck air through a system and discharge it to the atmosphere.
  • Forced-draft or pressure blowers generally suck atmospheric air and push or blow that air through a system.

(Side note: There are a few differences between fans and blowers for free-standing commercial and residential applications. We don’t make that kind of product, but you can learn more about those differences here if you’re not using or looking for industrial process fans or blowers.)

Determining Whether you Need a Fan or Blower

To determine whether you need a fan or blower for your operation, think about the function within the application.

If the application requires lower volume and higher pressure, you generally need a forced-draft or pressure blower with volume and pressure focused at the outlet. Applications include burners or combustion air, cooling, and air drying processes, fumes and gas elimination, tempered glass, and other conditioning processes.

When your application calls for other combinations of volume and pressure, you’ll probably be running an induced draft fan with pressure and volume focused at the inlet.

Industrial Fan or Blower Designs

Again, the same products serve as fans or blowers, although of course materials and accessories will vary depending on the application. The basic designs of our fans and blowers include:

We welcome comments and questions via our LinkedIn Page, and you can always Contact Us or Request a Quote for more details.

General Purpose Fans vs. Industrial Fans

While both fan types might appear to be the same, there are some major differences between how they are made and how they perform. The main difference between the two types is generally driven by cost.

General purpose fans use the least expensive materials and components and are designed for the residential or light duty commercial markets. These fans are used in homes, appliances and small ventilation systems.

Industrial fans are designed with heavier duty materials and components to operate longer, supply greater air flow and pressure, and meet more stringent environmental and ambient requirements.

The characteristics of the two types of fans are as follows and apply to both centrifugal fans and axial fans.

  General Purpose Fans Industrial Fans Material Gauges: Light gauge sheet metal and plastic.

10 gauge to plate material. Cast aluminum and stainless steel construction available.

Construction: Tabs and lock seams. Continuous welds. Bearings: Sleeve or strap type. Short bearing life. Ball or roller bearings in cast iron bearing housings. Much longer bearing life. Motors: Light duty, sleeve bearings, no service factor, minimum design features. Open Drip Proof enclosure. Continuous duty, ball bearings,with service factors, special design features, generally TEFC or EXP enclosures. Safety Factors: Slower wheel and shaft speeds. Much higher wheel and shaft speeds. Air Flow: Generally limited to 2000
CFM or less. From 200 to over 100,000 CFM. Pressures: Generally .10" to 4.0" static pressures. From .50" to over 100" static pressures.

What is the difference between industrial fan and commercial fan?

Industrial fans vs General Purpose Fans

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