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Create a comfortable dorm room with the help of an electric fan

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When outfitting your college dorm room this fall, include belongings both practical and fun so you'll be comfortable as well as happy in your new surroundings. You can have some of the comforts of home, particularly if you invest in a table fan for the early fall days that seem like a last spurt of summer weather.

Not every college dormitory has air conditioning, and those that do may not give individual rooms control over the thermostat. A table or desktop model can fit easily on a nightstand, window sill or desk and circulate a breeze that keeps you cool enough to buckle down on your studies. There are also clip-on fans that can be attached to a desk's edge or a shelf.

When you select your fan, look for models that have features like a fused safety plug. If the plug should detect a potentially dangerous electrical fault, it will automatically shut off the fan.

If you get a window fan, consider safety issues related to exposure to the elements. Heavy rain and wind can drive water into the fan motor, so it's best to get a model that's designed specifically for window use. Lasko's Storm Guard design allows a window to be closed behind the fan during rainy weather so no water can gain access.

Saving space in tight quarters
Keep in mind that when you're living in a dorm room, you should consult with your roommate about using a fan. Choosing a model that has several speeds and operates at a low sound level will keep you comfortable without disturbing someone else.

Another issue to consider is how much space you will have for a fan. Dorm rooms have little space to spare, but a desktop tower model is compact and creates a significant cooling breeze. If you and your roommate agree that a tower floor model will do a better job of keeping the whole room cooled down, they also don't take up much space. 

With or without air conditioning, electric fans are a useful addition to a dorm room. Rooms with no air conditioning will benefit greatly from a fan that increases the air flow. But even in an air-conditioned room, a fan will create a wind chill effect and keep the indoor air from getting stale.


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