Gearmotors vs. Direct Drive Motors: What’s the Right Choice?

When it comes to choosing an HVLS fan and supplier for your facility, there are a multitude of factors to consider. Other than space, weight, and cost, one of the most important details is the strength and quality of the motor that powers each fan.

VividAir fans are proudly powered by gearmotors. However, our air scientists get asked often about a new technology making a rise in fan applications: direct drive motors. What are the pros and cons of these motors, and why is it important to consider before purchasing an HVLS fan?

What is a direct drive motor?

Direct drive motors utilize new technology to effectively eliminate many mechanical components of a traditional gearmotor. The result is a lighter weight, more compact design of just two parts: the stator and the rotor. 

This pared down design has its benefits. Direct drive motors are able to be engineered for use in a variety of different applications. Lately, industrial fan suppliers have experimented with using direct drive motors to power HVLS fans. 

The results have been mixed. While direct drive motors allow for a sleeker design, run quietly, and can be controlled electronically – they are not always strong enough to power a heavy duty HVLS fan.

Why is a gearmotor the better choice?

While direct drive motors can boast a lightweight design, the result of cutting parts is trade-offs in performance. Reduced airflow to the motor can cause additional heat to build up in the Variable Frequency Controller. This influx of heat leads to larger issues, even complete motor failure. Fans powered by direct drive motors have consistently shown higher rates of failure and have short warranty periods. They also tend to be more expensive and require special technologies that can run up costs.

We recommend gearmotors for HVLS fans because of their robust, durable design. The additional torque provided by the gear reducer generates significantly more airflow, keeping every part of the mechanics cool – even under the harshest conditions or with fans running at the highest speeds. HVLS fans need a lot of power, and gearmotors are one of the few tools with the strength to keep your fan running strong.

VividAir fans use a patented blade and hub design to generate up to 30% more airflow than competitor HVLS fans. That advantage is even greater when up against direct drive motor fans. This unparalleled air movement with extended life requires the powerful, efficient performance only a gearmotor can provide. 

It all comes down to quality.

VividAir is enormously proud of the quality of our fans. When developing our patented technology, it was critical that every component could withstand the mechanical stress and strain associated with powering an HVLS fan.

Thanks to our gearmotors, your fans can run at peak performance for years without the threat of frequent breakdowns or maintenance issues. And because we’re so confident in our technology, our fans have some of the longest warranties you’ll find on motors.

In the end, a traditional gearmotor paired with our patented pitched hub is what makes VividAir fans so reliable and keeps your employees comfortable. 

Sound like HVLS fans could benefit your facility? Have more questions about what makes VividAir’s technology so unique? Get in contact with an Air Scientist below and we’ll be in touch.