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How to Change Ceiling Fan Speeds

Ceiling fans not only provide relief for you during the dog days of summer, but they can also save you money on your home's heating and cooling costs. When used properly in the summertime, they can keep the temperature of a room a full ten degrees cooler. In the winter, reverse the fan direction and your fan will help disperse the warmer air more evenly around your home. With three speeds available, you can customize your comfort with the simple pull of a chain.


  1. Find the chain that is located closest to the ceiling fan's blades. If the ceiling fan has a light kit, there will be two chains. The lower chain controls the lights; the top one controls the fan speed. If no light kit is on the fan, there will be only one chain that controls the fan.
  2. Pull the chain once until you feel or hear the switch click. This will start the blades turning and the fan will be on its fastest setting.
  3. Pull the chain a second time, and the fan will slow down. It is now on medium speed.
  4. Pull the chain a third time, and the fan will be on low speed, its slowest available speed.
  5. Pull the chain a fourth time to turn the ceiling fan off.

Tip

  • So you can quickly identify which pull chain is for the fan, install a decorative dangle at the end of the chain.

Warning

  • Never try to change the direction of a ceiling fan while the blades are in motion, you may injure your hands and damage the fan's motor.

About the Author

Based in Atco, NJ, Dave Donovan has been a full-time writer for over five years. His articles are featured on hundreds of websites, and have landed him in two nationally published books "If I Had a Hammer: More Than 100 Easy Fixes and Weekend Projects" by Andrea Ridout and "How to Cheat at Home Repair" by Jeff Brendenberg.