How to Fix a Ceiling Fan

Ceiling fans operate with a set of blades attached to a small motor.

If there is a problem with your ceiling fan, chances are it involves a faulty switch. Instead of calling an electrician to fix it, save money and do it yourself. Here is how to fix a ceiling fan.

Remove all the screws that hold the switch housing with the main housing on your ceiling fan.

Clean the switch contacts on your ceiling fan. This may restore it back to good health. Remove the switch from its housing and spray contact cleaner into it. Pull the chain a few times to work the cleaner across the face of the contacts. If cleaning the switch doesn't work, replace the switch.

Shine a flashlight into the switch to check to see if any of the contacts are broken or corroded. If they are, you should replace the switch. If they appear to be fine, spray some contact cleaner into the switch and flip the toggle back and forth to work the cleaner into the switch. If it still doesn't seem to work, replace the switch.

Check the wiring from the house to the fan. Make sure the wires appear to be in good working order.

Check to make sure the wiring connected to the fan is not loose. Ceiling fans can be heavy and can strain wiring, if the fans weren't wired properly with plenty of extra wiring. Make sure your wires aren't strained. If they are, replace the wiring.

Replace the motor if none of these other steps have fixed the problem. If you think the motor needs replaced, you should contact your manufacturer.

Things You Will Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Contact cleaner


  • Always use a ladder that is of the appropriate height when fixing your ceiling fans. You might also want to have a helper on hand to hold the ladder while you work.
  • Before you start working on any ceiling fan, make sure you turn the power off to its circuit.
  • Comply with all your local and national electrical and building codes when installing and fixing your ceiling fan.
  • Ceiling fan motors typically come with extended manufacturer's warranties. If your motor is not working, you should have your manufacturer deal with it, rather than trying to fix it yourself.