Camping in the summer is all fun and games, until you start hyperventilating in the heat. And because of that you need to get a good, portable camping fan. It will keep you cool on your adventures, and it will help you stay in a better mood.
At A Glance: Top 3 Camping Fans
There are a lot of different types of camping fans you can get. Some are able to keep an 8-person tent cool, while others are really small and intended for a small tent or personal use. And there are also fans that double as lanterns, so that you need to carry around as little gear as possible! In this review, we will check out all the different types, and help you figure out which one is the right choice for you!
Rechargeable Camping Fan
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Hanging Tent Fan
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Best Large Fan
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Best Portable Fan
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Coleman has produced a handy rechargeable camping fan here within their ever-popular OneSource range. OneSource means you can use the OneSource battery in the fan or in any other compatible Coleman products in this range.
This rechargeable fan can be changed via USB cable, or the OneSource battery can be replaced with another. The same USB port can also be used to charge your other gear while on a trip, which comes in very handy.
The fan has 2 speeds, both of which are ok, although some reviewers report the fan overall is not powerful enough. So, if you are using this for a large tent or a group, then it might disappoint.
There is also a tripod to stand it on, or you can change that for a hook to hang it from the top of your tent, saving you floor space.
Overall, a decent fan, with great features but certainly not the cheapest or most powerful.
This is both a camping fan and a lantern. For less than $15, which is great. It runs on two D batteries, and it features a hook that allows you to mount it in your tent’s ceiling. Additionally, it is a pretty quiet fan, with most people describing the noise it makes as a light hum. But, since it is a battery-operated fan, don’t expect the breeze to be too strong, even on the high setting.
One really good thing about this fan/lamp is that you get two separate hinges, which allow you to point the fan and light in different directions. That’s pretty useful – you might want to feel the breeze of the fan on your face, but I seriously doubt you also want the 18 pieces of LED light to shine in your eyes.
The manufacturer states that the hanging tent fan is able to run about 5 hours on the high setting. However, people who actually tested out the fan say that the run time is much longer than that. In fact, most of them had the fan working for about 20 hours on the high setting, which is about 2.5-3 nights. Which is great – I always love a positive surprise.
The fan can run on both high and low-speed settings, while the LED light doesn’t have such options – you can just turn it on and off. If you want to conserve the battery life of the fan, remember to turn off the lights when you don’t need them, since they are really bright.
The Geek Aire fan is a good choice for camping. It is not exactly lightweight or too portable, but it does have some redeeming qualities. For one, it runs on a rechargeable Li-ion battery, which has a capacity of 15600mAh – about 5 times that of an average smartphone.
It comes with an appropriate charger, and it only takes 4-5 hours to fully charge the battery. Plus it has an excellent airflow output – about 1500 CFM max.
Once you do that, you can expect it to run 4-24 hours, depending on the setting. Obviously, it can run longer on the low setting. And what’s really cool is that there is an LED battery life indicator on the fan, which will tell you how much charge is left in it. I think that is really useful, because it helps you avoid any nasty surprises and it allows you to ration the battery life however you want.
This fan also features a USB charging port, which you can use to charge your phone or other electronic devices if you need to. That’s pretty cool – the fan can also function like a giant power bank. And you don’t have to worry about rain, since the fan is IPX4 water resistant.
You can tilt the fan 120 degrees the front or back, but you can’t tilt it sideways. Additionally, this is a floor fan, so you can’t really mount it to the tent ceiling. The fan also comes with an AC adapter and you can also use it indoors, without using up the battery. Overall, this is a pretty polarizing product –the downsides are hard to ignore, but the upsides really make it worth it.
If you are looking for a plain fan, then this one is a good choice. It is battery operated, but it also comes with an AC adapter, which allows you to plug it into a power outlet. This is pretty useful if you want to use it at home or at the office, but don’t want to consume the batteries. Especially because you need 6 D-cell batteries to get this thing running.
Now, I think that’s a downside. Six batteries are a lot, in terms of both money and weight. But if you want something that you can use both indoors and outdoors, then you might be willing to compromise.
There are two speed settings for the fan – low and high. It can run for about 43 hours on low and 24 hours on high, which isn’t really that impressive, considering how many batteries you need to get it working. And at least it is a pretty quiet fan – most people describe the noise level as simple white noise, which is pretty good.
Overall, I’d say that this is a pretty average camping fan. It is not too portable and it doesn’t perform exceptionally well, but it does have some redeeming qualities. A built-in carry handle, which makes it super convenient to carry around is one of those. And it is a pretty slim fan, and not bulky like some of the others in this review.
This is another indoor/outdoor fan. It can run on batteries, and you will actually get a rechargeable 2600 mAh battery with the fan. You can use a USB to charge these batteries while they are in the fan, but you can also use it to power the fan directly via USB too. Meaning that it will also work if you plug it into your computer or a power bank.
The run time of this fan isn’t specified but reviewers state it runs for a long time. And, if you bring several power banks on your camping trips, you will be able to have this run much longer.
You can rotate the fan vertically by 90 degrees, but you can’t rotate it sideways. However, it has a timing feature so you can leave it running for 1/2, 1 or 4 hours – to avoid overuse or draining the battery.
The fan is super easy to clean since the metal frame can be completely removed. Plus, it is pretty small and lightweight, so it is really portable and whisper-quiet. Overall, this is definitely one of the best fans for you, if you want something that you can use both indoors and outdoors.
The Reenuo is both a fan and a lantern, which you can mount to the ceiling of your tent. But unfortunately, you can’t separate the two – both the light and fan point in the same direction. But it does have a 360-degree adjustable lighting angle. It is one of the most portable camping fans we will check out in this review because it weighs less than a pound.
A downside of this fan is that it only has one button for all the different settings. So, you can press it three times – first is just the light, second is just the fan and third is both light and fan. That can get a little obnoxious – imagine trying to turn on just the fan in the middle of the night and getting blinded by the LED lights. Not really what you want.
Additionally, the run time of the fan is decent but not amazing. The light alone can work up to 140 hours, and if you turn both of them on, expect a run time of 4.5 hours, which is perhaps enough for one evening. Also, you can adjust the speed of the fan – with 3 settings for speed.
The good news is that the fan comes with a USB cable, and you can actually put rechargeable batteries in it. That would allow the fan to work when plugged in, as it would store power in those batters – but not in AA ones. That’s not too bad – you could always plug it into your travel laptop or a power bank, if the batteries run out of charge.
This is actually a really portable fan. It is small, slim and lightweight and it can fit into your favorite camping backpack without a hitch. It can run on a USB cable or rechargeable batteries – the latter actually gives you a pretty good run time of 214 hours max (on low setting).
The fan can’t be mounted to the tent ceiling, but it is slim enough not to get in your way in most cases. Or you can get creative and sew some magnets in your tent – it just might work. It is really lightweight and portable, which makes it one of your top choices for camping, especially if you tend to carry a lot of gear with you.
One thing I really like about this fan is that it has a timer – you can set it to 1, 2, or 5 hours, and it will turn off automatically after that time. This is really useful if you want to leave it on when you go to sleep, but don’t want the battery to drain overnight.
Overall, if you are looking for an affordable and simple fan, I really think this is your top choice. You can rotate it vertically up to 90 degrees, which is okay. It’s not extremely adjustable, but it’s better than nothing. Plus, this is one of the few fans that also includes a medium setting for the fan speed, and that’s really useful.
Now, this fan is pretty different from the ones we checked out so far. But, if you are looking for something that is ultra-portable, and that you can prop up in the cup holder of your chair, then you will love this one. It is obviously small, lightweight and can keep just one person cool. But if you take a few of these and combine their powers, you will be able to keep the entire tent cool.
The handheld fan has it’s own rechargeable batteries. You can get 3-9 hours of use from just one battery, which is pretty good considering the size of the fan.
The metal clip allows you to use the fan in many different ways. You can hold it in your hand, place it in the cup holder of a camping chair, or you can use it to prop up the fan on a camping table. Plus, you can rotate it up to 180 degrees vertically, so there really are a lot of adjustment options.
This obviously isn’t the strongest fan, or the best one for a really large tent. But it is the most portable one, and the best choice if you want something just for yourself. It is the fan that you can also carry around town, when the summer heats start getting unbearable.
This is not the most portable camping fan you can buy. But it is the one with the most impressive run time – it’s able to work up to 53 hours on the low setting. If that’s what you are prioritizing, then this is just the right camping fan for you. Plus, it also doubles as a lantern, since it features two LED lights with three brightness settings on the sides.
It is not exactly small or lightweight, but it is pretty slim. And it has a base that helps it stand upright even on uneven surfaces.It also features a built-in carry handle, which makes it pretty easy to transport.
This fan supports two different power supplies – 6 D-cell batteries and an AC adapter. The adapter is not included in the purchase, which is a shame. And the batteries will significantly increase the weight of the fan, not to mention that they are not really that cheap to get.
But if you want power and longevity, then you will need to make some compromises. This fan is able to keep a large tent cool while running for days on end. So, if you tend to go on some long camping trips with a bunch of friends, this is the right fan for you.
Out of all the camping fans featured in this review, there were 3 that really stood out to me. So, let me tell you which ones they are.
If you want a fan that is also a lantern, then the Image Portable Fan is definitely the top option for you. It is small and lightweight, and it is super affordable. It is also the only fan/lantern that actually has separate hinges for these two functions, allowing you to point the light and the breeze in different directions.
You can mount it to the tent ceiling, and it can run up to 20 hours on high if you only use the fan. Definitely one of the best products in this entire review.
For those of you who are looking just for a fan that can keep a really big tent cool, I recommend the Geek Aire Portable Fan.It has a huge battery and a run time of about 24 hours on the low setting.
Plus, it is also waterproof, which makes it a great outdoor fan. And since it supports multiple power supplies, you can power it up with a laptop or a power bank. Or you could also use it as a power bank to charge up your phone, in case of an emergency.
And if all you want is a small, portable fan just for you, then the SmartDevil Mini Fan is the right choice for you. You can mount it in the cup holder of your chair and just enjoy the cooling breeze. Or you could bend its base and set it up on a table – anyway, you have plenty of different options to adjust this fan.
It runs on just one battery, and it has a pretty run time of about 11 hours. This is by far the best fan that can pretty much fit into your pocket.
And those are my top picks. But generally, any one of these 10 camping fans will do a great job. They all have the best ratings and are the most popular fans in this category. Head over to Amazon to check out their prices and more photos!
There are actually very few solar camping fans on the market, and those that I have found are not well-rated or readily available. So, what do I recommend in such a case? Use one of the above rechargeable camping fans and connect a portable solar panel to it instead.
This is not only s smart solution but also has lots of uses while you are camping. You can charge your phone, iPad, Kindle, or other gear as well. You can even take it on a road trip or anywhere else you go hiking or away from a power supply.
REI has lots of great portable solar panels, but of course, there are many others on Amazon
A portable camping fan should be small and lightweight. Obviously. But, the size of the fan directly impacts its power as well. So, if you are looking for a really powerful camping fan, you shouldn’t expect to be light as a feather. And if you’re not sure what exactly you want, you need to make up your mind right now – portability or power?
If you usually carry a lot of other gear with you, go for portability. But if you tend to go on longer camping trips, or go camping with a lot of other people, go with power– after all, you can always make someone else carry the fan when it gets too heavy for you.
However, the weight doesn’t impact just the portability, it also impacts its performance. Think about it – you might want to hang the fan off your tent’s ceiling. If you get a ridiculously heavy fan, it might not stay mounted to the tent at all times. Gravity could do its job, and if that heavy fan hits you or one of your friends in the process, you will literally feel the weight of that bad decision.
So, be sure to check out the weight of the fan in the product section, and see if you are comfortable with it. Some fans can’t be mounted to the tenet ceiling, and it’s okay for those fans to be slightly heavier – if you don’t mind carrying them around.
There are a bunch of different types of fans out there. You can get ones that run on batteries or ones that you can just plug into to a power bank. And there is also plenty of fans that support multiple power supplies.
Generally, the run time of a fan depends on several different factors. The power of the fan, the amount of batteries that it uses, the type of batteries that you put in it, whether or not you can switch it to USB, and just the overall quality of the fan. With all of that in mind, it’s no surprise that the run-time ranges from 2 hours to 50 hours.
You want to look at the fans that are a good fit for your camping habits. Check out the run times of each fan, which will be listed either in the product description sections, along with other important factors. And if a camping fan has a particularly long or short run-time, I will note that in the pros/cons section as well. So, definitely check out all those boxes below the reviews!
And also keep in mind that the run time of battery-operated fans significantly depends on the type of batteries you put in them – like with your Xbox controller. If you go for really cheap ones, don’t expect an outstanding performance from your camping fan. I strongly suggest Duracells, as they are top of the line.
To be perfectly honest, this hadn’t even occurred to me when I bought my first camping fan. And boy did I regret that! Because there is nothing worse than not being able to carry out a conversation with your friends because you can barely hear them over the noise of that stupid fan.
The noise level of an average conversation is about 60 decibels. I consider all fans louder than that to be extremely loud – could you fall asleep if there were people shouting next to you in the tent?
Now, not all manufacturers always list the exact noise levels of their fans. They tend to claim that it is only white noise, or extremely quiet, but we all know that you can’t really trust just the product descriptions if you want the whole truth. But you can compare what the manufacturer is saying to what the people who actually own the fan are saying, and see whether or not they were telling the truth.
So, I will do my best to show you fans that are quiet enough so that they don’t interfere with the camping dynamics you are used to. However, if a certain fan has some really cool features that kind of makeup for it being too loud, I will feature it. Anyway, you should look for information about the noise levels in the product info section, as well as the pros/cons.
With all of that in mind, I think you should now have a good idea of what you are looking for in your perfect camping fan. So, here are your ten best options!
Related Post: Best Travel Kettles
It is a good idea to have a fan for camping when temperatures rise to 75-80F (25-30C). On such days, tents can be even hotter than houses and with no breeze, they can get very uncomfortable.