Around a year back, EESL started publicising that they will be distributing 5 star (50-55 watt) fans. At that time itself, we thought that they are doing it wrong and repeating the same CFL mistake by procuring and mass distributing 50 W fans when 28 W fans are available in the market.But buoyed by their apparent LED scheme success named UJALA, they decided to go ahead with 50W fans.
At the outset, changing inefficient 70 watt old fans to 50 Watt fans is a good move and will definitely go a long way in India’s attempt to move towards energy efficiency. And through their mass procurement, they are also able to distribute the fans at Rs 1150/fan. But, there are some inherent flaws in the ceiling fan program:
a) There are 28 W fans available in the market. They made the same mistake by promoting CFL when LEDs were just evolving. They are repeating it with ceiling fans
b) The quality of the fan is clearly not up to the mark. In fact, the quality is making an absolute mockery of the customer’s judgment and intelligence who is going to purchase the fan. Price and energy consumption are not the reasons why people buy ceiling fans. In a tropical country like India, ceiling fans are the primary source of cooling available in most houses. And along with cooling, they expect longevity and no service issues. The EESL fan( with its below par RPM and air delivery, and poor material quality) fails on both counts.
To prove this, we procured an EESL fan and tested it at our premise( due to lack of any independent agency willing to do the same). The results are documented below. On each and every parameter, Atomberg or for that matter any other BLDC fan is much superior than EESL Fans. And although the EESL fan may seem cheaper at the outset, the lifetime cost of owning an EESL fan will be much more than owning a good quality Atomberg or any other BLDC fan.
How Atomberg is better than EESL Fan:
1) Life of Fan:
Atomberg uses BLDC motors which are the most energy efficient motors in the market. It is able to give the same output RPM and CMM as any 70 Watt fan at a power consumption of just 28W.It generates absolutely no heat when compared to induction motors. This results in significant efficiency improvement. And because there is no heating, there is no risk of the burning of the coil. This will significantly increase the life of the motor
2. RPM and Air Delivery
The reason why people use ceiling fans is because in most houses it is the primary source of cooling. And the parameters to measure how effective a ceiling fan is by measuring its RPM ( speed) and CMM( air delivery). The EESL fan fails miserably when compared to an Atomberg or any other BLDC fan. The RPM of 330 is nowhere near satisfactory levels for a tropical country like India. The air delivery of 210 is also not good enough. So, in a nutshell these fans are able to consume less power only by compromising on speed and air delivery. In case you are planning to go for an EESL fan, I would suggest you start running your fan at speed 4. This will give you similar power consumption and air delivery as an EESL fan.
When it comes to Atomberg, even though the power consumption is just 28W, the RPM is around 380 and the air delivery is 230. So, you don’t have to compromise on your comfort to save on your bills if you are using BLDC Fans.
Apart from the BLDC motor, Atomberg also uses aluminium bodies and blades where as EESL fans use Sheet Metal as the material. Aluminium is much lighter and is also rust free. The lighter bodies and blades also help in higher air delivery.
3. Product Finish Quality and Material Used
Another important thing about ceiling fans is the look and feel. Since it occupies the central location in any room, the finish quality is very important. When we evaluated the EESL fan, we found that there are several issues. We tried to highlight them as much as possible:
- Improper coating
- Shade variation and dust point over the surface.
- Less DFT (<50)
- Unbalanced blade
- DFT < 50
- Metal Cover
- Unbalanced cover
- Shade variation
- Shade variation and dust point over the surface.
EESL canopy quality has sharp edges, made up of brittle and hard material and is easily breakable.
Atomberg uses NISIKI shielded bearing (6202 ZZ) (well known brand )with (75-80) % Greasing. EESL fans use K-Tech 6202 Open Type Bearing. Using shielded bearing gives the following advantages:
- Reduces friction and wear also prevent metal to metal contact which reduces the bearing noise and increased the life of the product/components where we used.
- Minimize the cage wear by reducing the slide friction.
- Serve as heat exchanger agent.
- Unsealed bearings must be lubricated at regular intervals to prevent failure, whereas sealed bearings are lubricated by the manufacturer and never need to be lubricated again.
- Sealed bearings eliminate the potential for accidental over-lubrication. Unsealed bearings fail more frequently from over-greasing than from under-greasing. This requires the proper use of sealed bearings; never install grease fitting on a sealed bearing or attempt to force grease into it. Clearly, mark machinery with sealed bearings to ensure that any technician who works on it knows not to try to lubricate them.
4. Total Lifetime Cost of Owning a EESL Fan V/s Atomberg Fan
The main selling point that EESL is widely publicising is the price of buying the fan. But if you look a little deeper, you will find that not only does the fan doesn’t solve the purpose of cooling, the lifetime cost of owning an EESL Fan is much more than owning a Atomberg Fan. The calculation is shown as under:
For the calculations, we have assumed a 10 year period. Although most fans will work for more than 15-20 years
As you can see from the lifetime value, by using Atomberg Fans over EESL fans, you can actually save Rs 3400 over a 10 year period. If your usage and electricity rates are higher, the saving will be much more.
The government and EESL definitely had its heart in its right place when they introduced the program for energy efficient ceiling fans. But because none of the big players have come up with BLDC fans at a large scale due to the technical expertise required for BLDC fans, EESL are going for the 50-55 watt fans as they are produced by all the big incumbents of the ceiling fan industry. The government already had a mishap by promoting CFLs , when LEDs were already the next big thing. Can they afford another blunder with ceiling fans? Only EESL will have the answer to this question.