Axial Fans

Commercial and industrial facilities need to control their air to provide clean, safe, and compliant working conditions. Axial fans are popular tools for ventilating spaces and moving large quantities of air. This page will provide information on how axial fans work, applications for axial fans, and when axial fans are the right choice for your facility.

What are Axial Fans?

what are axial fansAxial fans move air parallel to its revolving motor shaft to create a precise, consistent airflow. The spinning blades control the air movement, while the intake and discharge of air happen in the same direction. Axial fans facilitate the low-pressure movement of air for improved ventilation. These fans can be noisier than other fan types, but they tend to be smaller and lighter and can be equipped with silencers.

Common Applications of Axial Fans

Axial fans are ideal for ventilation and exhaust applications in commercial and industrial facilities. They can move large volumes of air in and out of a space. Regular applications for this type of fan may include:

  • Warehouse exhaust and ventilation systems
  • Paint booth ventilation
  • Furnace airflow systems
  • Ventilation in wastewater pump stations

How Do Axial Fans Work?

Axial fans have a streamlined design, with a central impeller and fan blades that move air through the fan parallel to the motor. The blades either pull in or push out air, depending on the orientation of the fan blades, to pump in fresh air or remove air full of odors or contaminants. While the blade shape and speed can slightly alter the pathway of the air, the motion of the air is controlled by stator vanes and there is little-to-no centrifugal force. While there is some change in air pressure generated by the movement, the pressure stays relatively consistent.

Axial flow fans can be designed to maximize efficiency with blade pitches and materials that minimize static pressure to optimize airflow. The blades are typically constructed from mild steel or aluminum. Because these metals are lightweight, the weight of the fan itself can be controlled and the load on the motor system is minimal.

Axial vs. Centrifugal Fans

Unlike axial fans, which move area along a single dimension, centrifugal fans expel air at a 90° angle.  Whereas axial fans move air along its axis, centrifugal fans move air radially. The centrifugal intake mechanism—the high-speed blades—pressurizes the air and expels it more forcefully. Centrifugal fans tend to be reserved for highly contaminated air or extreme environments, whereas axial fans are preferred for handling high volumes of air movement in general commercial and industrial environments.

There are two main types of centrifugal fans:

  1. Forward-curved blade systems, which handle less air and produce less noise
  2. Backward-curved blade systems, which can handle more air but produce more noise


The key difference between applications for axial and centrifugal fan systems is the severity of the need for airflow. Centrifugal fans are used in high-pressure applications, such as industrial drying and filtration. Axial fans are a better fit for air conditioning, cooling, ventilation, or exhaust applications.

Building Specifications

The exhaust system of your building may also play a role in determining which fan is the best fit. If the building’s exhaust is released directly into the atmosphere, axial fans can handle the job. They produce little static pressure and can easily let exhaust out of the building. Narrow ductwork requires more static pressure to force exhaust through the pathway and out of circulation.

Choose Axial Fans and More from Indventech

At Indventech, we specialize in high-quality exhausters, fans, and ventilation systems for commercial and industrial spaces. Each of our systems is designed for long-lasting use and precise air control. We supply companies across industries with the axial fans, blowers, and accessories they need to keep facilities safe, compliant, and comfortable.

Contact us today to see how we can help you find the right parts and equipment, or browse our catalog to find exactly what you need.