How To Install or Replace a Ceiling Fan

How to install a ceiling fan or replace an existing light fixture with a ceiling fan. The popularity of ceiling fans continues to grow as more and more homeowners discover dramatic, year-round energy savings. In summer, ceiling fans create cooling breezes, which reduce the strain on air conditioners. In winter, they circulate heated air to keep the room warm.  Installing a ceiling fan is relatively simple, especially if the space above is accessible from an attic. However, even when it isn’t, the job is still quite doable. We will show you how to replace an old light fixture with a new ceiling fan and light, in a room with no attic above. The advantage of this approach is that you don’t have to run new wiring. The fan connects to the existing cable from the old light.  Of course, a longer install time and electrical wiring knowledge is needed if installing a new fixture where there is not previous wiring.  In that situation, you may need a professional installation.

Replacing a room’s chandelier or ceiling fixture with a ceiling fan that includes its own light fixture is an easy DIY project for anyone comfortable with basic electrical improvements. If the room has no existing fixture, this project is more difficult and entails cutting through the ceiling and installing new wiring and a switch.  A wide range of both fan and light kit styles are available, providing choices that will contribute to the beauty of any room.

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Enjoy a cool breeze during those humid summer days and save on energy costs by installing a functional, decorative ceiling fan. They can even be used in the winter to gently pull heated air away from the ceiling where it tends to collect. Light kits can be added to increase the usefulness of many ceiling fans.

Ceiling fans need to be properly anchored to an electric ceiling box that’s designed to hold a heavy fixture. It will not only hold the wiring, but also support the full weight of the fan. If you replace a simple light fixture, the box will likely need to be replaced with one rated for a ceiling fan.

 Preparation
• Check the joists for any wiring or plumbing pipes that might be in the way before installing your ceiling fan.
• Make sure the electrical box that holds the ceiling fan in place is fan-rated.
• Inventory all parts and instructions before starting your installation.

Safety
• Turn off electrical power to the fan at the electrical panel and use and appropriate testing device to ensure
no power is present at the fixture before you begin work. DO NOT RELY on a wall switch to protect you
from electrical shock.
•  If you are adding a new fan where one didn’t exist, consult with your local building department to determine
if a permit required.
•  Inventory all parts and instructions before starting your installation.

Savings
• Installing the fan yourself if a great way to save on the cost of your project.
• Try searching for modern ceiling fans that use CFL bulbs in the light kits to save money.
• Go green and consider donating your old fan to a local charitable organization instead of throwing it out with
the trash.

Read more on how to install a ceiling fan.