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How to Install a Ceiling Fan: Ceiling Fan Installation Guide

Ceiling fans are a crucial part of just about any home. Ceiling fans can cool a room down by 4° in the summer or they can distribute warm air around a room in the winter. Installing your ceiling fans shouldn't be an impossible task. With our ceiling fan installation guide, your brand-new ceiling fan will be up and running in no time. 

  1. Prep and gather materials. To install a ceiling fan, the first thing you want to do is make sure you have a ceiling fan. Equally as important, is ensuring the ceiling fan fits the room and space. Visit our Ceiling Fan Buying Guide: How to Choose the Right Ceiling Fan Size for our best tips on choosing a ceiling fan. Next, check that the electrical box is ceiling fan-rated. If you're replacing an existing fan, chances are that it is appropriately rated. All ceiling fan-rated boxes are required to be labeled clearly stating that they are fan-rated. Look for this label or inscription before installing the fan. 
  2. Turn off the power. Before installing your fan, turn off the wall switch as well as the circuit breaker. This will ensure that your risk of electrical shock is extremely low. 
  3. Remove the old ceiling fan or fixture. Unscrew the canopy and disconnect any wires. It may be a good idea to have a second person to help you remove the ceiling fan; especially if you're using a ladder. 
  4. Mount the junction box and bracket. Next, you'll mount the junction box. Home Depot gives the helpful steps below. 
    • Now, it's time to mount the junction box. Insert the fan brace through the hole in the drywall and onto the ceiling. The square tube of the brace should be centered with the hole.
    • Rotate the square tube with your hand until the teeth are firmly locked into the joist. Feel around to gauge your results.
    • Attach the U-bolt bracket to the fan brace. It should be centered in the hole with the bolts facing downward.
    • Thread the cable wire into the junction box. Slip the box up so that the bolts slide through it and tighten the nuts to secure the box into place.
Now, it's time to mount the ceiling fan mounting bracket. Follow the manufacturer's instructions on how to do this. Be sure to thread the main wires through the center of the mounting bracket.
5. Adjust your downrod. Most ceiling fans come with a 6" downrod. However, if you decide you need a longer downrod, additional lengths are available to purchase. Choose ceiling fan downrod length based on the height of your ceilings. You'll also want to keep in mind that sloped ceilings require the fan to either be compatible with sloped ceilings or to use a sloped ceiling fan kit. After ensuring the above, install the downrod and thread the main wires through. Your fan should come with instructions on how to install the downrod for your fan. 
6. Wire the ceiling fan. Connect the main wires to the fan motor wires. For wiring, you simply match wires up. I.e. black main wires to black fan wires, white to white, etc. Once the wires are securely connected, push them up in the housing and screw in the ceiling fan canopy to the mounting bracket. *Pro tip: Some ceiling fans come with additional wiring. Be sure to refer to your ceiling fan installation guide for extra wires.
7. Install blades and light kit. Using the included ceiling fan hardware, install the blades and light kits. Again, your ceiling fan will come with unique instructions on how to do this so be sure to refer to that. 

 Kichler Lighting has some helpful ceiling fan troubleshooting tips: 

If the fan won't start...
  • Check circuit fuses or breakers.

  • Check all electrical connections to ensure proper contact. CAUTION: Make sure the main power is OFF when checking any electrical connection.

  • Confirm the transmitter batteries are installed properly (if applicable). 
    Positive (+) side facing out.

  • Ensure the batteries have a good charge.

If the fan is noisy...
  • Verify that all motor housing screws are snug.

  • Be sure the screws that attach the fan blade brackets to the motor are tight. 

  • Allow a 24-hour "breaking-in" period. Most noise associated with a new fan disappears during this time.

  • If using an optional light kit, verify the screws securing the glassware are tight.

  • Make sure the light bulbs are not touching any other component.

If the ceiling fan is humming...
  • This issue may be due to loose screws. Check all screws including motor housing, fan blade, and blade iron screws to be sure they are snug.

  • Confirm that the canopy cover ring fits snugly onto the bottom of the canopy.

Still unsure? Watch Kichler Lighting's expert video on how to install your ceiling fan. 

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