Big Ass Fans Powerfoil 8 Plus

Powerfoil 8 Plus by Big Ass Fans vs. MacroAir AVD 780

What is a HVLS fan?

High-volume, low-speed, or HVLS fans are generally referred to when describing very big fans for commercial or industrial use. HVLS fans were invented by MacroAir out of a need to keep dairy cows cool and productive during hot summer months. Since then, many competitors and imitators have entered the market. In this comparison we compare the Big Ass Fans Powerfoil 8 Plus against EnergyLogic’s MacroAir AVD-780 model.

When do you need an HVLS fan?

If you are looking to increase comfort, increase the shelf life of products in a warehouse setting, decrease energy bills, or mitigate safety issues, an HVLS fan might be a perfect fit. Both the MacroAir AVD-780 and Big Ass Fans Powerfoil 8 Plus can help solve to these needs, how they get there and the costs passed on to you, however, may differ.

What sizes are available?

For comparison, The Big Ass Fans’ Powerfoil 8 Plus offers a range of 12’ to 24’. The MacroAir AVD-780 comes in comparable sizes ranging from 20’ to 24’. If you are looking for a fan under 20’ you may also want to compare to the MacroAir AVD-550 ranging from 8’ to 18’. The Powerfoil 8 Plus can weigh as much as 324 lbs when hung. The MacroAir AVD-780’s maximum hanging weight is 239 lbs. This can have a significant impact on ease-of-installation and structural support.

Who has the better warranty?

The Big Ass Fan Powerfoil 8 Plus comes with a 3-year full parts warranty if not installed by the factory, 5-years if you pay for factory installation (a hidden cost). The MacroAir AVD-780 comes with a 50,000-hour-runtime warranty no matter who installs it.

*This data was obtained and derived from publicly available information as of May 26, 2017.

Who has fewer moving parts?

MacroAir AVD780 is a gearless direct-drive fan. This means only 2 moving parts to worry about and more air, quietly and efficiently being distributed. Powerfoil 8 Plus uses a less efficient motor and noisy gearbox to turn the fan. This means more pressure and heat on the moving parts, more energy consumption, and lower lifespan of the fan.


MacroAir comes with a mounting kit included. Optional hardware is available for which guy wires are not required for up to a 10’ drop length. Big Ass Fans do not include mounting hardware in their unit pricing (another hidden cost) and require guy wires for all fans with a 4’ drop length or greater.

Winglets or no winglets?

The winglets featured on the Powerfoil 8 plus might look intense, but when it comes to fan mechanics they have some drawbacks. By placing winglets on the fan, torque is increased on the unit which can cause a reduced fan life. It can also be disruptive to airflow and decrease the overall efficiency of the fan. Many of the models featuring wings from Big Ass Fans will also have to be reconsidered to meet the DoE 2020 regulations while MacroAir fans already meet or exceed those efficiency requirements.

Here are a few additional resources you might find helpful when choosing an HVLS fan: