FAQ

Ticking/Squeaking/Rattling sounds from Fans

Customers can sometimes describe grinding, knocking and metal-on-metal noises incorrectly as ‘ticking’ that is coming from a Fan. It is best to try and clarify the sound with the customer first as it is very likely to either be an installation issue or it could be that threaded components such as blade nuts and screws may have loosened over time through normal operation. These components should be occasionally tightened to ensure that the fan does not develop noises. Please ask the customer to check the following as this is not covered under warranty:

  • Fan is screwed into timber and nailed off in the ceiling as per the correct installation from a qualified electrician;
  • Hanging bracket is firm and all hanging bracket screws are tight and secure;
  • The canopy bowl is not touching the ball joint;
  • All blade screws, canopy screws and jam screws are firm;
  • Check if the down rod from the ceiling is not moving, if it is then something is loose in the hanging bracket causing the fan to either make noises and/or wobble.
  • Check that the glass cover is installed correctly (if the Fan in question has a light);
  • Ensure any light globes are fitted correctly and are not touching the glass cover (ask the customer to remove the glass and the globe and check if the noise continues after switching the Fan on).
I need to install a ceiling fan; how should I go about it?

There are no set rules for when it comes to choosing a ceiling fan, but you should think about a few key things.

It’s very important to consider the size of the room when selecting a ceiling fan. The larger the room is, the larger the overall ceiling-fan diameter needs to be in order to generate enough air movement and create a cooling breeze. Blade pitch is also important. The greater the blade pitch on the ceiling fan, the greater the volume of air that will be circulated. Most importantly, as the overall diameter and blade pitch increases on all Martec ceiling fans, so does the size of the motor used, as there is a much greater resistance put on the motor. Many other ceiling fan suppliers do not always follow this basic principal

Ceiling Fan Size Recommendations

Room Dimensions Suggested Ceiling Fan Size

Up to 12 Square Metres (3.5m x 3.5m small bedroom) 1067mm (42″)
Up to 18 Square Metres (4m x 4.5m medium bedroom small living area) 1200mm (48″)
Up to 30 Square Metres (5m x 6m large bedroom, large living area) 1300mm (52″)
Up to 40 Square Metres (6.5m x 6.5m rumpus room, large living area) 1400mm (56″)

Large Rooms – Living, family or master bedrooms need a ceiling fan with an overall diameter of 1300mm or larger to generate enough airflow. A small fan in a larger room can do three things: Make the room look smaller; produce airflow in only a small area; and, create an unbalanced look in the room.

Small to Medium rooms – For kitchens, dining rooms, children’s bedrooms and offices you should choose a fan sized 1200mm or smaller.

Outdoor Areas – All of Martec’s ceiling fans are NOT waterproof or IP65 rated, and thus cannot be directly exposed to the elements. Martec’s Precision 316 which is constructed entirely from Marine grade stainless steel 316, is the only fan Martec recommends for continued outdoor use. Exposure to the elements, sand, dust and/or salt in the air can dramatically reduce the performance of all of Martec’s ceiling fans, with the exception of the Precision 316.

For all coastal areas the Martec Precision 316 is the only ceiling fan series available where the entire exterior construction of the fan down to every last screw is made from the highest grade 316 stainless steel. It is not a blended material construction fan offered by other brands that claim offer the full 316.

Ceiling Height

If you have high ceilings above the standard 2.4 metres, you may require an extension rod– which can be purchased separately–to lower the ceiling fan. The full range of Martec and FourSeasons ceiling fans have the ability to add an extension rod (which much be purchased separately). The standard extension rod size is 900mm (1800mm rods also available) but it can easily be cut to suit your requirements by the installing electrician. All Martec and FourSeasons ceiling fan extension rods also come with the required appropriate wiring lumes, to make extending the wires from the fan motor to the connection point a simple plug-in system, for easier installation.

All Martec and FourSeasons ceiling fans come with a Hang-Sure Canopy fixing method to the ceiling which means that ceiling fans can be mounted on sloping or cathedral ceilings of up to 30 degrees, and, of course, on flat ceilings as well.

Recommended Installation Height

All ceiling fans should be at least 2.1 metres from the floor to the blades of the fan and at least 300mm from the ceiling. The greater the distance from the ceiling to the fan blades, while still maintaining the 2.1 metres from the floor, the greater the volume of air that will be circulated.

Motor Speed & Blade Pitch

Most ceiling fans operate at a top speed of 200 RPM’s. Motor speed, size and blade pitch are the determining factors in the amount of airflow that will be created by the fan. Martec’s ceiling fan line has many models, with the pitch varying from between 12 degrees to 23 degrees for high performance applications and large volumes of air movement. All of the motors that we incorporate in our fans are suited to the overall fan diameter and blade pitch to provide maximum performance and years of hassle-free operation. Our motors are among the finest available, with lamination-reduction technology for quieter operation, and milled edges–not pressed. All of our start-run capacitors are doubled sealed and temperature treated to ensure smooth speed transitions, and ensure whisper-quiet operation.

Additional Lighting Source

If your fan will be replacing the main light in a room (which is the case with most remote-control fans) you will need to purchase a ceiling fan that has an integrated lighting fitting. Most Martec Ceiling Fans are light adaptable so you can still retain your light source, if placing the fan in the centre of down-lights or other lighting sources. If you are using down-lights to illuminate your room and place a Ceiling Fan in the centre of these, it is very important that the fan blades are well clear of the down-light beams to avoid creating a stroking effect. Martec also offers many models of ceiling fans with dedicated energy-saving light sources, including the technology available to dim them.

Remote Controls

Have the convenience of being able to control the light and action of your fan from a remote control. The Martec LCD Remote Control Kits have many handy features such as 1-9 hour timer, light dimmer, and light delay, as well as controlling the fan speeds and light on/off function. Most Martec ceiling fans can be installed with a remote-control kit, which means there is no need to run an extra wire to control the fan, as the remote does everything for you. Remote controls are an optional extra, although some ceiling fans in our line do have them included as part of the package.

How high should my ceiling fan be from the ground?

It should be at least 2.1 metres from the floor, and at least 300mm from the ceiling.

The greater the distance from the ceiling to the fan blades, while still maintaining the 2.1 metres from the floor, the greater the volume of air that will be circulated.

Can I purchase a remote control ceiling fan?

Yes, our Martec LCD Remote Control Kits have many handy features such as 1-9 hour timer, light dimmer, and light delay, as well as controlling the fan speeds and light on/off function.

Most Martec ceiling fans can be installed with a remote-control kit, which means there is no need to run an extra wire to control the fan. Remote controls are an optional extra, although some ceiling fans in our line do have them included as part of the package.

What is the difference between AC and DC ceiling fans?

A DC ceiling fan uses 70% less energy for the same airflow as a conventional AC ceiling fan.

They have better controls of different speeds (more speed settings typically 6) and are a smaller size for a given output of air movement. Being “brush less” it should also be quieter and less prone to the buzzes that can appear on cheaper AC ceiling fans and also quicker starting. Due to the more complex electronics they are more expensive than an AC design.

What is Ripple Control?

Ripple control is a way in which electrical companies use a superimposed frequency on standard 50Hz AC power supplies, which are commonly found in most (if not all) Australian households. You must be asking yourself now, “But what does THIS mean??”

Simply put, electrical companies are controlling and managing off-peak power load on their distribution networks. The frequency is used to control hot water heaters, street lights and water pumps through their remote receiver to control the power going to and from each utility. Ripple control may also be used to signal high network load periods for major customers to allow them to reduce power consumption.

What are its Effects?

A hum or buzz from electrical appliances or a flicker from LED lighting are the most common complaints arising from ripple control, which is generated when a transformer or the motor windings in a switched-on appliance resonate with the ripple control frequency, usually between 300Hz and 1300Hz. The noise is often, but not always, intermittent depending on when the ripple control signals are being transmitted.

People often notice it most acutely in the night when off-peak hot water systems are turned on.

How will I be Affected?

Ripple control frequencies are commonly used in NSW, south east Queensland and New Zealand, although other areas within Australia also use this technology. Not all properties are affected by ripple control, so just because you might live in one of these areas, does not mean that you will have these problems.

One of the only ways to confirm if the area you live in is affected by ripple control frequency is to contact your power company and ask them directly. If you have a system that uses ripple control signalling you might also see a ripple control receiver wired into the fuse box and a dual tariff meter or dual meters.

NOTE: The presence of a ripple control signal does not necessarily mean you will experience ripple control noise in ceiling fans or flickering in LED lights.

What can be Done About the Noise?

Ripple control signal filters are available to manage the noise generated by affected electrical appliances. The ripple control filter must be matched to the local signal being output by your electrical company, usually 750Hz or 1050Hz (information of which can be acquired through your electrical company), and must be installed by a licensed electrician.

There may be extreme cases where the ripple control frequency is so strong it requires two filters to be installed to reduce the noise sufficiently and in some locations multiple ripple control frequencies are used also requiring multiple filters.

Why Doesn’t Martec have Ripple Control Filter’s in their Fans?

Ripple control noise is not the norm and in many environments where it does occur it is not a problem because the noise generated is not audible.

While Martec does sympathise with the few customers who do experience a problem, it is not cost effective to build an AC electric motor that rejects all ripple control frequencies given the small proportion of people affected, a cost that would have to ultimately be borne by all consumers.

It’s not Ripple Control Noise. What Else Could it Be?

If you are hearing the tones at random times of the day, your electrical supply may be affected by harmonics; a power fluctuation that is not part of the normal electricity supply or ripple control signal output. Harmonics are caused by an interference created by other equipment on the network, such as inverter type air conditioners and switch mode power supplies for computers.

The offending appliances may be in your home or other premises on the local power grid. If you are being affected by network harmonics, it may be of benefit to transfer the electricity supply to your premises to a different phase in the street. This is something you will need to discuss with your electrical company.

Will my Warranty Cover Ripple Control or Harmonics?

Ripple control and electrical harmonics noise is not the result of a mechanical fault with your ceiling fan or LED lights. As such we do not cover either occurrence under our warranty. Where ripple control noise is found to be at fault, the customer will have to acquire a filter and have it installed by their electrician at their expense.

If you make a warranty based service call and ripple control or electrical harmonics noise is diagnosed as the problem you may be charged the call-out fee for the electrician.

What can be Done About the Flicker?

Ripple control signal filters are available to manage the flicker generated by affected LED lights. The ripple control filter must be matched to the local signal being output by your electrical company, usually 750Hz or 1050Hz (information of which can be acquired through your electrical company), and must be installed by a licensed electrician.

There may be extreme cases where the ripple control frequency is so strong it requires two filters to be installed to reduce the flicker sufficiently and in some locations multiple ripple control frequencies are used also requiring multiple filters.

I'm installing a downrod, how can I cut it to suit?

Mark a cut line on the exterior of the downrod, using a felt-tipped marker. Double-check your measurements before making the cut to ensure you cut enough from one end of the rod to equal the length you require.

Wrap the downrod in a towel or cloth. Insert the downrod into a vise. Rotate the downrod until the clevis pin openings — in the sides on each end — face upward toward the ceiling. Tighten the vise to ensure the downrod does not move.

Cut the downrod along the cut line, using a hacksaw. Smooth the cut edges, using a round file.

Measure 1/2-inch from the cut end of the downrod and mark that point, using a felt-tipped marker. Ensure the mark on the downrod lines up with the clevis pin opening on the end of the rod still in the vise.

Attach a 1/2-inch metal drill bit to a power drill. Position the drill bit over the mark you made at the end of the downrod. Drill straight through both sides the downrod to create a clevis pin opening.

Remove the shortened downrod from the vise.

How can I save money and energy at the same time?

Ceiling fans provide a natural energy-saving cooling solution. Most ceiling fans use only about as much power as a 60 watt light bulb which equates to less than 1 cent per hour to run. Ceiling fans will save you money all year round in cooling and heating energy bills.

Ceiling fans in the summer: While a ceiling fan does not necessarily lower the temperature of a room, it does make the room feel cooler by providing a circulating breeze. Effective circulation can make you feel up to 8 degrees cooler, and reduce air conditioning bills by up to 40%.

Ceiling fans in the winter: In the winter months, you should run your ceiling fan in the reverse mode using the Summer/Winter switch. If a ceiling fan is used in the Winter mode in conjunction with the heater, it will push the warm air up against the ceiling and then down the walls, gently re-circulating warm air through the room, which means that heaters will not have to operate for as long, or at such a high-heat setting, thus reducing your energy consumption and saving you money.

How is it easier to install a remote controlled ceiling fan over a wall control?

Remote controlled ceiling fans are installed using the existing light and power source in a room. Simply replacing your rooms light with a remote controlled ceiling fan and light saves running additional wires down your walls.

This option also takes less time to install and costs less. Depending on which remote you have there are also more settings as opposed to wall control, such as dimmer, timer, and delay.

How does the Summer/Winter reverse setting on a fan, create warm air in winter?

Placing ceiling fans on the summer setting allows the blades to move in a counter-clockwise direction forcing the air directly down, placing the ceiling fan on the winter set-ting reverses the blades to a clockwise direction and gently draws the room air up towards the ceiling forcing warm air down and out towards the walls.

What is LED Lighting?

LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) are semiconductor devices that emits light energy when an electrical current is passed through them.

A diode allows current to flow in only one direction. When electricity is passed through the diode it produces a bright light around the small bulb.

Why should I go with LEDs?

Basically because they save you money in the long-term.

LEDs are energy efficient as they consume less energy than normal light bulbs yet they produce the same brightness. They have a greater lifespan of around 50,000 hours, lasting around 25 times longer than normal light bulbs.

In what different ways can I use LEDs?

Lighting can generally be broken down into three main types – ambient, task and accent.

Ambient Lighting is the general or background light that fills a room. Ambient lighting can be achieved with ceiling or wall-mounted fixtures, floor or table lamps and recessed or track lights.

Task Lighting is a small concentrated light that targets a particular area in order to perform specific tasks. Task lighting helps you perform activities such as reading, writing, cooking or when working on a computer.

Accent Lighting is highly concentrated light which highlights and draws attention to a particular object or feature. It is a way of adding style to your home and give it that wow factor.

What does LED colour temperature refer to?

Colour temperature measures the colour spectrum of an LED bulb in Degrees Kelvin. Low colour temperatures indicate a warm or yellow light whilst a high colour temperature indicates a whiter or blue light.

Warm White: 3000K
Neutral White: 4000K
Cool White: 5000K

And what about CRI?

Colour rendering Index or CRI indicates how accurate a light renders the colour.

The lower the CRI the more unnatural it will look, whilst the higher the CRI the better it renders the colour therefore making it look more natural.

Can you tell explain what LUMENS are?

A measure of the quantity of light emitted by the light source. The higher the lumens, the brighter the light will be.

Lumens per watt is the measure of lamp efficiency. Divide the light’s rating in lumens by the light’s wattage. The higher the lumens per watt the more light produced for less power.

What is LUX?

This is the measurement of light intensity. One lumen per square meter = one lux.

What does IP rating refer to?

This indicates the degree of protection provided against intrusion of dust and water. The higher the number, the higher the protection.

How Does Ripple Control Affect LED Lights?

A flickering LED light is the most common complaint arising from ripple control, which is generated when usually but not only when the light is dimmed and the ripple control frequency is in the line, usually between 300Hz and 1300Hz.

The Flickr is often, but not always, intermittent depending on when the ripple control signals are being transmitted. It is normally at certain times i.e. 6pm and then again at 8:30pm and will only last for 30 seconds to 2 minutes, and when the power company stops sending the signal the flicker stops.

People often notice it most acutely in the night when off-peak hot water systems are turned on. ALL brands of LED drivers are affected by these ripple control signals.

Why Doesn’t Martec have Ripple Control Filter’s in their LED Drivers?

Ripple control is not the norm and in many environments. While Martec does sympathise with the few customers who do experience a problem, it is not cost effective to build an Electronic Driver that rejects all ripple control frequencies given the small proportion of people affected, a cost that would have to ultimately be borne by all customers.

How can I work out the air rotation for my bathroom fan?

The capacity of the bathroom heater/exhaust fan required is determined by the size of the room it is to be installed in. Different room sizes will require different air rotations.

Recommended air rotations per hour:
Bathrooms/laundry (without shower) – 11 air rotations per hour.
Bathrooms (with shower) – 22 air rotations per hour.

To calculate your room volume in cubic metres (m³):
Simply multiply the length by width by height (L x W x H) of your room. Eg. 2.5m x 2.5m x 2.4m = 15m³

Why is there still steam in my bathroom?

Your Martec Bathroom Unit works by drawing steam-laden air from the room, and, as with all exhaust fans, it is essential that sufficient air inlets are provided. Ensure adequate inlets exist through windows, vents or under the door. Air flow path from inlet to fan should ideally pass over the steam source.

In the winter months during hot showers, you may notice that there is more moisture and condensation build up. If this is the case, you may wish to improve your natural ventilation or invest in an additional exhaust fan. Condensation occurs when warm air hits a cold surface, the air reaches its dew point and condenses on the surfaces.

Bathrooms which have high ceilings, are larger than average, or have an open shower may all require additional ventilation.

Ducting from your Martec Bathroom Unit should be as straight as possible and be positioned to allow easy air flow from the exhaust fan. Ducting installed with a difficult path for the air to flow through, can hinder the effectiveness of your Martec Bathroom Unit.

Contact our Product Support Team if you have any questions.