There are many different types of fan guard, made from a range of materials including metal and plastic. As fans are essential for cooling electronics, many people who need to purchase them can rightly wonder which the best type to buy for their needs is. Each different type of guard has its advantages and disadvantages, which will be explored below.
One of the materials of choice for this type of accessories is metal, and aluminium is a very popular choice for many people. There are several reasons for this, including that it is often made into a special mesh which offers some of the best protection for electronic fans.
Aluminium fan filter units actually allow for high levels of air passage, as well as catching contaminants and shielding EMI interferences. These are often available in numerous sizes as well, which is ideal for those using different size fans for their equipment.
Aluminium is one of the hardest wearing materials, why it is often used in this kind of mesh guard. Mesh, due to its fine construction, could be easily damaged if made from another material. Due to the properties of aluminium this is not the case with mesh guards, as the metal is very hard to pierce or break.
There are also perforated metal fan guards available too, which offer excellent cooling and a great deal of protection. This protection is possible as the guard itself is a sheet of metal with several holes in it to allow the passage of air. The metal acts as a shield which prevents the fan from becoming damaged by impact.
Indeed, both perforated and mesh fan guards are very good at providing a great deal of protection to the fan. For certain applications, where a great deal of protection is required, these two might be the best choice.
One of the most common other metal guards on the market is the coiled wire fan guard. This can be made from aluminium and various other durable metals. These offer a particular advantage over the other guards mentioned earlier. There are also some disadvantages that need to be taken into consideration by the customer.
A coiled wire fan guard basically consists of a long piece of metal twisted round in a coil which is then used as protection for certain fans, commonly including the fan tray assembly in a computer or laptop. In the fan tray assembly these tiny metal coil fan guards are ideal for protecting the small fans inside.
Unlike larger mesh or perforated fan guards, these coiled wire fan guards are adaptable and appropriate for numerous sizes of fan, from tiny to very large. Often these types of wire fan guards come in different shapes too, which again differentiates them from the uniformity of mesh or perforated guards.
These also have the advantage that they can increase air flow by up to 50%, meaning that they are ideal for cooling electronics and other equipment much more efficiently than other options.
Finally there is the plastic fan guard, which is common choice for many different types of equipment and electronics. This choice is particularly popular with those who require a less expensive option as a fan guard. Plastic is generally inexpensive, especially when compared with its metal counterparts.
Traditionally, plastic was less reliable as a material than metal, and much easier to snap or break. However, recent options on the market have been reinforced with fibreglass for added strength. This means that plastic fan guards can now live up to their metal versions, and prove just as reliable in a number of scenarios.
These are just some of the main types of fan guard that are widely available on the market. From coiled wire fan guards that are commonly used in a typical fan tray assembly to reinforced plastic ones, there is something for every need and requirement.