You turn on the ceiling fan. The blades begin to turn. Pretty soon, you begin to hear a strange whining noise. Then the strange sound grows deeper. The fan begins to vibrate. Then there’s a puff of smoke and the thing stops working.
You’re left with a dead ceiling fan in your room. There’s one question on your mind at this moment: can ceiling fans be repaired?
The answer to this question depends on the type of ceiling fan you own, the cost of the ceiling fan, and how good you are at DIY repairs.
Troubleshooting Your Ceiling Fan
If your fan isn’t spinning, but is humming, then you likely have a broken flywheel to fix. In the example above, however, you may have a fan that is completely dead. The first thing to do is to ensure the fan is receiving electrical power. Go check the circuit breaker and the fuse box. Either may have tripped.
You may also have the fan hooked up to a GFCI circuit that tripped. Reset the trip at the outlet and your fan might just work again.
If power is going to the fan, then you will want to check the switch. Use a voltage tester to check the screw terminals to ensure they aren’t active before proceeding. You may need to unscrew the wires from their connection, remove corrosion, or replace the connectors. This could restart your fan.
Should none of this work, you may need to complete a flywheel replacement. Each fan is a little different. Here’s a good video that can help you repair an Emerson ceiling fan.
Common Problems with Ceiling Fans and How to Fix Them
Maybe your ceiling fan works just fine. The problem that you’re facing is a pull-chain that came out of the unit. These chains break off inside the switch all the time. Although you could reattach the chain with some ceiling fans, you’ll need to replace the switch.
Today’s Homeowner takes you through the 11 steps to replace a ceiling fan switch if this is your repair issue.
If your ceiling fan has started to wobble more than 1/8-inch when on the highest setting, Family Handyman takes you through the process of balancing your ceiling fan properly.
There are several additional problems which might creep up with your ceiling fan. The light kit might stop working. The ceiling fan might not reverse. There could be airflow issues. Del Mar Fans and Lighting have put together a comprehensive Troubleshooting 101 guide for ceiling fans that can help you navigate this issue.
If all else fails, you may find that the cost to repair a ceiling fan is higher than the cost of one of the best cheap ceiling fans that are available today.
Ceiling fans can be repaired, but sometimes the time and cost of that repair do not make sense. Troubleshoot your ceiling fan, discover the problem, and then decide if a repair or a replacement is the best option.