Whether you’re planning to repair or replace your ceiling fan, sometimes it isn’t just a matter of unscrewing a few pieces and taking the fan down. More often than not, it becomes a bit more of a complicated process – however, with the mounting popularity of ceiling fans, there’s hope if you’ve lost the instructions for installation and removal that came with your fan. You can do it yourself – very carefully! Ceiling fan removal doesn’t have to take over your weekend.
Before You Remove the Fan
1) Clear out the area around the fan. That means moving tables, chairs, or anything else that might get in the way or become a potential tool for an accident. Set up a ladder underneath the fan, and make sure that you have someone else in the room with you while doing the job – you should always have a spotter when using a ladder. Find yourself the correct screwdriver and grab your pliers.
2) Before you do anything else, make sure the electrical supply to the ceiling fan is 100% off. Then check it again. Then check it a third time. You absolutely cannot just turn off the wall switch, since just anyone could walk by and inadvertently flip the switch without knowing why it’s off. This will give you a powerful and potentially deadly shock, so look for the breaker or fuse box to the room. When the electricity is off, the fan will not turn and the lights will be off. This is another reason to have a spotter, to help you figure out which fuse or breaker is the correct one.
3) You can now reach the fan with your ladder, and make sure the person working with you is able to easily determine which tool is which – and can hand them to you when needed.
4) Assuming you’re working with a globe system, remove the glass globe in the center by turning the decorative screws at the unit’s base. When the globe slips off in your hand, pass it to the person at the bottom of the ladder, and then begin removing the center bulb and any additional light bulbs. You may need to unhook some electrical wires around the fan’s base, though you may have to first remove the base with a screwdriver to get at these wires.
5) The fan blades will then need to come off the unit, since most blades are attached to the fan’s body with metal armatures. Check for the correct screwdriver, and take off each blade by holding the fan blade with one hand while you unscrew it with the other. If you are planning on reinstalling this fan, hold onto the screws. Once this is done, you should only have a motor that’s still attached to your ceiling.
6) Take a look at which screwdriver you’ll need, and look carefully at how the motor assembly’s support structure is situated. You might have to support the motor with one hand while loosening the surrounding bolts that hold the unit onto your ceiling joist. Make sure that you do not let the motor fall out of the unit, since that will damage the wiring and ruin your fan. Instead, support the loose motor with your hand while looking for a box that contains the wiring, which will typically be an aluminum junction box.
Final Ceiling Fan Removal Steps
7) The final and most dangerous part of ceiling fan removal comes when you take the wiring out of the motor. If the electricity has been shut off, you don’t need to worry, so if you’re still unsure – check it again. The wires that come from the underside of the motor can be traced to the wires that come from the ceiling, and there should be a set of plastic caps where both groups of wires come together. These caps are screws, which are able to wrap the two sets together – and they can be removed by turning them counter-clockwise until the wires come apart.
8) When both sets of wires as well as your grounding wire are disconnected, your entire ceiling fan has been uninstalled.