Is there a type of fan that blows cold air versus just plain air?
Not really. Once you add cold air to a fan, it basically becomes an air conditioner or an evaporative cooler.
An air conditioner is really just a fan that blows refrigerated air.
Albeit much more sophisticated than that since it it dehumidifies as it cools the air, but fundamentally the same.
And a evaporative cooler is a fan that blows air off of pads that are soaked in water.
Technically a fan is just a motor that has propellers attached to it to move air.
The temperature of the air that a fan is moving may seem to be cooler because of the wind chill effect that it is creating, but the temperature is the same going in, as it is coming out of a fan.
And logically once you begin to cool the air off any other way, whether it be through a refrigerant or damped pads,
you can no longer call it a fan because you have begun to condition the air with an outside element, which then makes it an air conditioner.
But whatever you want to call it, the point is to get some cool air on you when you’re hot.
DIY Air Conditioner
You have probably heard of DIY air conditioners that are basically fans that blow over ice, done with beer coolers.
If you want to take the time and put in a little more effort, this type of DIY fan/ AC is a excellent way to get a fan to feel like an air conditioner.
The ideal is to cut circular holes, a large one on top for a fan to blow into, and two on the sides to connect some flexible duct too. (This is done using a circular blade saw, the type that you use for a door handle, only much bigger. And a power drill.)
Connect connect the flexible duct to the hose that you cut on the sides using duct tape or aluminum tape.
Feel the beer cooler with ice up to the point of the flexible duct.
Plug the fan in and turn it on.
Enjoy the cool air coming off of the ice through the flexible duct.
your going to need a constant supply of ice as well as a cleaning schedule because you are looking at a recipe for mold when you combine a container of water with heat in a dark place.
Evaporative coolers work much like the DIY beer cooler air conditioners you see on YouTube.
They are usually window type air conditioners that have a water supply that keeps pads soaked with water as a fan blows cool air off of the water into the house.
Evaporative coolers or Swamp coolers have one major flaw, they increase the humidity in the room.
You’ve probably heard the saying” it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity”.
That’s because the humidity can make it feel much hotter than it actually is during the warm and hot months.
And it’s not an accident, that evaporative coolers have taken on the nickname ” swamp coolers”. And thats because in the right conditions, an evaporative cooler can make a room feel like a swamp.
That’s not to say that there’s not a place for them, everyone likes the feeling of cool air coming off of the ocean or a lake.
But it’s all the same premise.
Portable Air Conditioner
Refrigerated Air Conditioners have the advantage of being used as a fan when you don’t need the colder air.
And the advantage of reducing the relative indoor humidity which can be at the source of the temperature inside of the house.
Are you looking for a fan that blows cold air like an air conditioner?
Unfortunately you’re not going to have too much luck with a fan blowing cold air like an air conditioner unless you can first cool the air off before the fan blows it.
Which is technically what an air conditioner is.
And evaporative cooler is a type of fan that blows air off of water which makes the air feel cooler. But this type a fan is also called a swamp cooler because of its tendency to fill the house full of moisture, making it feel like a swamp.
And since, the high humidity in warm weather is as much a factor in the heat, adding more humidity to the air it’s only going to make it feel that much more uncomfortable.
But if you’re just looking for a personal fan and want to make it a little cooler, they do make small evaporative coolers that feel just fine blowing on you whereas trying to cool down a whole house or room may make it feel balmy.
There are plenty of DIY solutions for making a fan blow cold air. Most amount to the same technique of blowing the air over ice or water.
A better solution is a small mobile refrigerated air unit. They will not only blow cold air, they will help reduce the humidity in the room at the same time.
The biggest downside is they have to be vented. So that means either using a window air conditioner or running the provided ductwork to a window or attic.