How To Install a Ceiling Fan

It’s easy to update, replace, or install a ceiling fan for the very first time. If you’re the DIY type you might even enjoy this simple project.

Here’s what you’ll need to install a ceiling fan:

  • A ceiling fan kit in the style of your choice.
  • A metal electrical box rated for ceiling fans.
  • Wire strippers.
  • Wire connectors.
  • Electrical tape.
  • A circuit tester.
  • A screw driver.
  • Drill with driver & bit.
  • Pliers.
  • A ladder.
  • Safety glasses.

Let’s talk about the electrical box for just a second. The typical light fixture box is going to be plastic, just like the electrical boxes that typically will house the other light switches and outlets in your home.

That plastic box is not going to be strong enough to hold up your ceiling fan or to take the force of that fan in motion. That’s why you’re going to have to replace the plastic box with a metal box.

Look for one that’s specifically rated for ceiling fans. It’s going to have to stand up to the pressure.

Cut the power at the circuit breaker. Then remove the fixture canopy on the existing fixture so you can test those wires.

Power’s no longer flowing? Then it’s time to go ahead and switch out the plastic box with the electrical box.

Once you’ve done that you can actually get to work on the fan. The kit will typically come with a mounting bracket, so that will need to be installed first.

The directions in the box will tell you exactly what to do with your specific mounting bracket so be sure to read those thoroughly.

Once you’ve got that mounting bracket in place you can get back off the ladder and assemble the fan motor. Again, follow the box directions very closely.

Now you can lift the unit to the mounting bracket and get to work on connecting those wires. All of the wires are color coded. White goes to white, green goes to green. If there’s a light the light wire goes with all the other wires in the box.

Pop them together with those connector caps, then secure them with electrical tape. Then tuck everything back into its box.

Now you can secure the canopy and mount the fan blades according to the kit directions. Make sure everything is good and secure. Install the light fixture.

Now you can restore power and test out your new ceiling fan fixture.

Here’s a visual walk-through from Lowes on how to install a ceiling fan:

If you’re not comfortable with this type of electrical project you’ll need to call a licensed electrician. If you’re in Durham, Raleigh, Cary, Chapel Hill, or anywhere else in the Triangle Area be sure to call us for a free estimate. We install ceiling fans and fixtures all the time for our neighbors and friends!

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