You shouldn’t have to avoid camping just because of hot weather – summer camping is a favorite for many outdoor enthusiasts as you don’t need to bring as much heavy gear than in the cooler months. That’s where camping fans for tents come in, because, let’s be real, things can get pretty stuffy inside your tent in hotter weather.
Keeping cool inside the tent is crucial as it can prevent overheating, and help you get to sleep much faster. They give you the option take an afternoon nap, and let you dry off if you get caught in the rain outside.
Since most are battery powered, you don’t need to lug around an external power source. Plus, you can use tent fans outdoors when you’re chilling or having lunch and there are no natural winds to be found.
We’ve created this top 10 list of the best camping fans for tents and outdoors for sale on today’s market, which will surely answer the question, how to keep your tent cool?
We’ve narrowed things down for you based on quality, good battery life, portability, and other criteria which we’ll get into later in our Buyer’s Guide – stay tuned.
1. Coleman CPX 6 Lighted Tent Fan
Another pick from Coleman, this model has a rather unique hanging system. You don’t need to hang it from an external hook, as it basically comes with its own hooking method. Use either the provided magnet base or a carabiner clip and place it on the inside of the tent ceiling. Then, a magnetized plate gets placed on the outside of the tent material, and the two will attach.
As well as the hook, it has a red base that folds out into a stand. An LED in the middle will illuminate your surroundings – it’s not the strongest light we’ve seen, but it does the job. It runs for 10 hours on high, and up to 30 hours or slightly more on low.
Since it’s made from durable plastic, it’s lightweight and able to withstand various weather conditions. You’ve got multiple options in terms of powering it up, where you can choose from D-cell batteries, an A/C adapter, or a re-chargeable power bank.
- Magnet Hanging System – No Hook Required
- 3 Power Options & 2 Blade Speed Settings
- Safety-First Foam Blades
2. Coleman Freestanding Tent Fan
Coleman is one of the best-known brands in the camping industry, and we’ve reviewed many of their tents and other gear. This fan model is very minimalistic in its design, with a simple base that allows the main section to be bent back and forth to face different directions.
It’s battery operated, able to run up to 21 hours at a time on the lowest speed. Choose from either the low speed or a higher one, which makes it suitable for both inside tents and outdoors. We think it’s great for night time use, as it produces a low buzz that won’t disturb you while you sleep.
Perhaps our favorite feature are the foam blades, which are soft and flexible to the touch. This means that they’re much safer for use around children, as they won’t hurt any little fingers if they happen to touch the fan.
- Compact & Portable Design
- Safe Soft Foam Blades
- Adjustable 2 Speed Settings
3. BaseCamp Tent Fan with LED Light
This next model is made to hang downwards to face inside the tent, causing the breeze to flow and circulate throughout the whole interior. Weighing just a pound, it won’t weigh down your gear or the roof of the tent. Dual fan speeds run for 48 hours on low, and up to 24 hours on the top setting.
A 50 lumen LED light is incorporated into the front. It provides directional light, which is handy for rummaging around your tent when it’s dark outside. When the light is not on and the blades are on the low setting, it can last for a surprising 100 hours or more.
We appreciate how large and bright the display buttons are, colored a vibrant red and easy to feel for. To keep things safe, the blades are already protected by the front part, but they’re also made from malleable foam.
- 2 Air Speed Settings & 2 LED Light Options
- Squishy Foam Blades Add Safety
- 5 ft/s Wind Speed Suitable for 4-Person Tents
4. Mifanstech X20 Camping Fan with LED Lights
While this model may look a little more heavy-duty than the others, it actually weighs just under 1.5 lbs. It’s a fraction pricier than some of the other models, but it’s super multifunctional with different speeds and settings for both the blades and the lights.
We think it’s ideal for use both outside and indoors, with more than enough speed to cool things down in an open space. Bring it to picnics, for outdoor dining, or inside a tent. Considering it has four methods of power, you’re not limited to just one supply – plug into a PC, power bank, AC adapter, or car charger. The base area is highly durable, made from hard plastic and keeps the whole structure stable. It’s made to be noiseless, so you can sleep with it on.
Stepless speed is incorporated into this model. This means that you have a knob on the front that lets you adjust the direction of the wind in addition to the speed – it feels smoother to use than buttons. In terms of the LED lighting, you’ve got 3 options, including a warm yellow light for a softer ambience.
- 3-Level LED Brightness & 270° Rotation
- Stepless Speed Rotates Wind Direction
- 7800mAh Battery Capacity & 4 Other Recharge Methods
5. Odoland Portable Camping Fan & LED Lantern
First up is Odoland’s battery-powered 2-in1 model, equipped with an LED light in addition to the fan. It’s one of our favorites because your gear can be lighter, as you don’t need to pack both a lantern and a fan. The LED element has 18 bulbs for extra brightness and gives up to 37 hours of run time. With both the light and fan turned on, you get 16 hours of use.
You can use it as a standing model or hang it up with the hooks. The fan and light switches are easily accessible, able to be adjusted separately. Choose between low or high speeds for the fan, in which you get 50 hours and 30 hours of run time respectively. Plus, you can adjust the direction of the air and light with 360° of rotation.
For a wide range of 10 ft/s (feet per second) of airflow, it only gives off a light humming sound even on the highest speed setting. The whole build is surprisingly lightweight and compact, measuring just over 11 inches in height.
- Built-in LED Lantern Lasts 37 Hours
- 360° Rotation with Hooks & Base for Hanging or Standing
- Dual Adjustable Speeds
6. Amacool Portable Battery Camping Fan with LED Lantern
Our next choice is another lantern-fan hybrid, which sits or stands depending on your preference. The hook folds in and out of the base, making it easy to switch between the two. This is one of the smallest and most lightweight we’ve seen, weighing just 8 ounces. A highlight for us is that it can be powered using different methods, so you’re not restricted to just one type of power supply – use batteries, an adapter, power bank, or car charger.
3 air settings range from low, medium, and high, with a 34-hour life on the lowest setting. With 3 turbo blades, it has a higher reach in terms of airflow, where the highest speed achieves 9.8 ft/s. The LED also has 3 options so you can customize the brightness.
Other than the fan and LED light, it is also a diffuser. Simply add some essential oils or water on the cotton pads and you can create a misting effect, which can cool things down faster.
- 3 Turbo-Blades with 3 Settings
- Ultralightweight 8 ounces
- 4 Power Supply Options & 360° Spin
7. DEWALT 20V MAX Cordless Tent Fan
Now this is truly heavy-duty. It’s perfect to cool things down on a worksite, for a big outdoor space, or inside a large-capacity tent. It has an industrial look to it, with a chunky base and an overall weight of around 6.7lbs that help it stay sturdy.
Dual hanging options let you customize where and how you want the air to flow. Either use the two metal hooks to hang it up or mount it to a wall. You can also leave it freestanding to move it around at any time. Speed is controlled by a simple knob that is smooth to control.
There are two models available – choose from corded or cordless. The cordless runs on a 20V battery for about 30 hours on its lowest speed setting, or 7 hours on high. Triple blades deliver 500 CFM (cubic feet per minute), which is a massive amount of space.
- Variable Speed Control with 3 Blades
- Hang, Mount, or Freestanding Options
- High 500 CFM Airflow Rating
8. SkyGenius Clip-On Camping Fan
Not only is this model ideal for camping, but it’s also a great fit for the office, in an RV, outdoor dining, or inside the home. It has a straightforward design with a user-friendly control interface that features two simple buttons for the fan and LED light, and USB access.
Completely rechargeable, you can plug it into your laptop, a power bank, USB charger, or even a car charger. In terms of positioning, you’ve got a 3-in-1 design. Hang it up using the attached hook, leave it freestanding on a flat surface, or clamp it onto your desk using the base that doubles as a large clip.
To achieve different airflow directions, it rotates 360° both vertically and horizontally. Integrated LEDs produce bright, white light, so you can see what you’re doing at night in 3 different levels of brightness. Despite its powerful wind capabilities, it doesn’t make loud noises.
- Super Lightweight & Portable Design
- Clip, Hang, or Sit on Flat Surface
- Adjustable LED Lighting
9. SkyGenius Portable LED Camping Lantern
This other model from SkyGenius features a more rounded square design than the circular shape of the previous one. It emits a powerful flow of wind, plus has fantastic battery life. At the lowest setting, it can last for up to 34 hours. Personalize the direction of the air with 230° of rotation up and down, and 350° side to side. At just 7.28 inches in height, it’s compact and can fit in an average sized backpack.
To avoid white noise, it generates less than 40dB, even at a higher setting. Set it up on a smooth surface, or hang it with the added hook. There are 12 LED lights that emit a bright, cool type of light to illuminate your surroundings. When it’s time to charge it up, use a power bank, your laptop, or a USB charger.
- Compact Construction for Camping or Travelling
- Sturdy Base with Hook
- Strong Airflow with Less Noise
10. Lasko 7050 Misto Outdoor Misting Fan
For our last choice, we’ve switched it up a bit. This fan from Lasko is a little different to the others, as it’s more of a mister that pushes out cool, refreshing mist along with air for a much cooler experience. There’s no doubt that it’s a little steeper in price, but it’s more intended for large outdoor areas and can reduce air temperature down to 25°.
A 90° pivot option directs the air and mist across a wide space, plus it’s got a low profile and solid construction to withstand the outdoor elements. 3 speeds give you control over the amount of mist coming out. It’s easily controllable using the side knob, and a button next to it lets you oscillate the fan.
To supply the mist, you’ve got a hose that attaches to standard garden hoses for endless water supply. The power plug is an in-line GFCI 3-pronged grounded version, which is also UV and rust resistant.
- Refreshing Mist with 3 Speeds Cools Down to 25°
- In-line GFI Cord for Safety
- Weather, Rust & UV Resistant
How to Choose a Quality Camping Fan
Typically, fans for tents and outdoors come either as rechargeable, or powered by a battery. There’s no telling which is better than the other, as there are positives and negatives for both.
Rechargeable models mean you don’t need to change out batteries every time they die, but they may not last as long in terms of endurance. Models with batteries might last a little longer and can be replaced with ease, but that can get a little costly overtime if it’s a much larger fan. For smaller ones, it’s not that big of a deal.
Something else that we like about battery-powered ones is that some of them come with an AC adapter. This means that it can be powered through any outlet at hand, instead of with the batteries. You won’t need to change the batteries as often in this case.
This is an important feature to consider because it can help you decide which settings you should use at a given time – for example, if your battery is nearing the end, you’ll know to use it on a lower setting, or without simultaneous lighting if applicable.
Battery life will be different for each model, brand, and design. Some can last up to 100 hours on low speed settings, and some can last just 6 hours on the highest. It all depends on the features and brand, so check the manufacturer as they will usually tell you how long the battery will last.
Most models will include various ways to attach or set up the fan. For tent-specific ones, we highly recommend choosing one that can hang from a hook, as well as be freestanding. This gives you more options as to how you want the direction of the airflow. Also, it lets you decide whether you want to keep it off the ground or not.
Something to note, though, is that hanging models may produce a little less airflow as they need to be lighter in weight. That’s why they’re good for tents, because it’s an enclosed space that traps the air in and lets it circulate.
There are also some other cool ways of attachment that we’ve seen, like the Coleman CPX 6 Lighted Tent Fan that hangs inside your tent without even needing an external attachment – it basically hooks onto itself. Clamps are also great for clipping the fan on the side of a desk or on a pole. Some can even be mounted on walls, which is ideal for jobsites.
Now, this might not be a big deal to some, however there are people out there who don’t enjoy a loud fan that produces constant white noise. If you’re someone who is sensitive to continual humming, look out for fans that are low-level noise. It’s especially important if you need complete silence while you sleep.
The higher the level of airflow, the cooler it will get. It’s a simple as that. Models with a higher CFM (cubic feed per minute) or ft/s (feet per second) will push out more air, cooling you down faster.
Generally, more airflow will mean you’ll need to upsize your fan, but there are plenty of smaller models out there that push air throughout a tent or smaller surface area without any issues. On top of that, a bigger fan means less portability, so consider that if you need one for travel.
Is it safe to leave a camping fan on overnight?
These fans are designed to run for 6, 10, 20, hours and beyond, therefore leaving it on overnight isn’t an issue. Although, we do suggest doing regular safety checks. Look at the condition of the cable and plug (if it has one) and listen for any unusual sounds. If you don’t have a hanging fan, make sure that there are no cables to trip over in the dark.
Does the light get hot on the fan-and-light combo fans?
Ordinarily, these kinds of models have low wattage, so won’t heat up as much as you’d expect from a massive industrial fan. Battery powered ones also don’t use that much power to work, so won’t heat up even with a light feature switched on. If you are concerned, simply keep it away from the tent lining by hanging it on a hook or resting on the floor.
How heavy are camping fans?
As you’ll notice with most of the models we’ve included on our list, these fans are made to be portable, and therefore light. Other than the few exceptions of slightly heavier ones, most are under 2 lbs. They are made from plastic, that is durable enough to withstand the elements, but light enough so they won’t bend the tent poles.
Conclusion on Camping Fans
Keeping cool while camping or spending time outdoors is crucial to avoid potential heat exhaustion. Especially when confined to a tent, it’s important to recognize that things can get warm very quickly, particularly in summer.
Camping fans for tents and outdoors will help cool things down, circulate air faster, and dry off any wet gear. Some have other handy features, like built-in lights, multiple attachment options, and even softer blades for safety. When choosing your own, think about how portable it is, how much air it can push out, and the type of battery source.