How to Extend Ceiling Fan Downrod Wiring for a Longer Drop
The optimum height for ceiling fan blades is seven feet off the floor. Should your fan be too far off the floor, you won’t get the best air movement and your ceiling fan becomes a fancy light fixture that moves. You can move the fan closer to the floor by attaching a longer downrod but your wiring may not reach through it. You can extend the downrod wiring for a longer drop by following these basic steps.
Turn the power off to the ceiling fan at the breaker panel. If you don’t know which breaker that needs to be turn off, simply turn on the ceiling fan and turn off each breaker until the ceiling fan quits operating.
Disconnect the ceiling fan from the power supply. Remove the screws that hold the canopy to the mounting bracket to be able to disconnect the wiring. Twist off the wire nut that connects the white wire from the ceiling fan to the white wire from the power supply. Twist off the wire nut that connects the black wire from the power supply to the black wire from the ceiling fan motor and will also connect to the wire that powers the light kit.
Remove the ceiling fan from the hanger bracket and set it aside to give you enough room to work on the fan safely.
Remove the old downrod by loosening the set screw and removing the pin that holds the downrod in the downrod collar.
Measure the downrod and purchase 12 inches more wire than the downrod measurement. You will need 14 gauge stranded wire in white, black and blue. The white wire is for the neutral wire, black for the hot wire and the blue wire is for the light kit.
Wire the extended downrod wiring to the original ceiling fan wiring. Connect the white wires together by twisting an orange wire nut onto the wires and securing with a piece of electrical tape. Connect the black wires in the same manner that you connected the white wires. Connect the blue wire to the wire that is marked as the light kit wire with an orange wire nut and secure with a piece of electrical tape as well.
Thread the extended downrod wires through the new downrod. Attach the new downrod to the ceiling fan motor housing in the manner that the old one had been connected.
Connect the ceiling fan to the power supply. Connect the white wire from the ceiling fan to the white wire from the power supply by twisting an orange wire nut onto the wires. Connect the black wire from the ceiling fan and the blue wire from the light kit to the black wire from the power supply by twisting another orange wire nut onto the wires. Push all the wiring into the electrical box and attach the canopy to the hanger bracket with the screws that were removed in Step 2.
Turn the power back on to the ceiling fan at the circuit panel.
- If your ceiling fan does not have a light kit, you will not need the blue wire and there will not be an additional wire for the light kit attached to the ceiling fan motor.
- When working on any electrical project, make sure the power is off to the circuit that you are working on.
Cecilia Harsch has been writing professionally since 2009. She writes mainly home improvement, health and travel articles for various online publications. She has several years of experience in the home-improvement industry, focusing on gardening, and a background in group exercise instruction. Harsch received her Certified Nurses Assistant license in 2004. She attended Tarrant County College and studied English composition.