Mist fans are wonderful inventions that mix the nice breeze of a fan with a little water mist. This typically can cool a hot area near the fan by several degrees. You see these set up in amusement parks, fairs and other places where lots of people are gathering in the heat of the day, and are used to give people the opportunity to cool off. You can also purchase a mist fan for your own backyard to keep yourself and guests more comfortable. If you don't want to spend the money, however, it is possible to build a mist fan.
Set up the fan where you want it. Make sure that you are able to reach an outlet and that the fan is pointing toward the area where people are going to feel it. It is best to use an outdoor fan for this, since these are built to withstand weather conditions such as rain. This means that they will be better equipped to deal with mist and possible puddles.
Screw the garden hose into the outside faucet and bring it over to the fan. Add extension hoses if you can't reach the fan.
Attach the mister nozzle to the end of the hose. The best kind to use is one that twists on and off instead of one that has a handle. This way it will stay on by itself without having to tape the handle down.
Run the hose up the front of the pole stand that the fan is attached to so that the mister nozzle is just below the fan. Tape the hose in place at the pole.
Adjust the mister nozzle so that it points out from the pole at an angle and away from the fan. This way the water will spray up into the wind that the fan creates and not into the fan itself. Tape it in place. You might have to wedge something between the hose and the pole to keep the nozzle pointed outward. You could also attach the hose to the bottom of the front of the fan by using zip ties to hold it to the wire cage of the fan. You will still need to wedge it so that it points out away from the fan.
Turn the mister nozzle until it is open a little. Turn the fan on first and then the faucet. This is important. You don't want to risk spraying water into the fan. Once the fan is running, turn the water on about halfway. You don't need a massive amount of water for the mister fan to work well, and you can control the pressure with the nozzle end. Adjust the mist nozzle if needed to get the flow you want.
A little more complicated method involves the top of a spray bottle and a garden hose attachment. Screw the garden hose attachment in the spray bottle top and then attach it to the end of the garden hose. You might need to cut off part of the spray bottle lid so that the attachment will fit onto the garden hose correctly. Make sure to check the fan electrical cord for damage before using it. Install a flip-up box cover over the outlet to reduce the risk of water from making it into the outlet. Most hardware stores carry these outlet box covers.
Turn the water off before you turn off the fan. This way the fan will continue to blow the water mist away from the motor until it has all evaporated. You don't want to get the fan motor wet if you can help it. If you have to plug more than one extension cord together, use electrical tape at the connections to keep water out. Only use a low pressure, homemade mister fan in conditions of 45 per cent humidity or less so that the mist will evaporate in the air. You don't want to soak down your guests or create water puddles on the ground near electrical machines.