Reliable Heating and Air

Reliable Heating and Air

How to Install a Ceiling Fan

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

If you want to upgrade both the look of a room and the performance of your HVAC system, consider adding a ceiling fan. Replacing an existing fan is actually a job homeowners can pull off with the right skill set and tools in hand. Safety concerns and time constraints that pop up along the way may lead you to call in a professional. But if you feel up to the task, heres how to install a ceiling fan.

1. Preparation and Safety Procedures

To start the job, you need to cut power to the area where youll be working. Switch off the circuit to the room in question, then use an electricity meter to make sure the electricity is off. Using a light switch is unreliable and may leave you exposed to electric shock.

Replacing a fan wont require any structural changes, but upgrading from a light fixture means youll have to add support for the weight of a fan. Depending on the area where you live around Atlanta, you may need a building permit from the municipality.

2. Removing the Fixture

Once the power is definitely off, begin by removing the light or fan that is currently in place. Take out the screws connecting the fixture to the ceiling. Carefully bring the fixture out of the ceiling and detach the electrical wires by twisting off the plastic ends connecting them to the light or fan. Then remove the brackets that held the fixture in place.

At this point, a trained eye will be able to tell whether the electrical box in place is securely attached to the ceiling joist. Even if you competently replace a ceiling fan, the original setup may be flawed. Experienced electricians can advise whether its safe to continue or whether you should have a new support system installed.

3. Installing New Supports for a Fan

Even if you feel confident you know how to install a ceiling fan, installing new supports to hold a fan in place requires the use of a drywall saw while youre perched high on a ladder. Youll have to cut a new hole in your ceiling and set up a brace for the fan. Its often not practical for homeowners to proceed from this point.

If you want to continue, youll have to set up the brace box between joists inside your ceiling, centering it so its placed in the middle of the hole youve cut. Next, add the assembly and prepare to connect a mounting plate for the new fan.

4. Assembling and Connecting the Fan

If the work is already done to support the fans weight, you can skip to this step, where youll assemble your new fan according to the manufacturers instructions and connect it to the mounting plate below the electrical box. Move the fans wiring through the downrod and tighten the screws so you can prepare to connect the fans wiring. By setting the fans canopy temporarily in place, youll have time to wire the fan while it hangs from the ceiling.

Once the wiring is set, push all wires through the hole in the ceiling. At this point, you are ready to connect the canopy to the mounting plate. All thats left is putting the fan blades in place and installing light bulbs in the fixture.

Complications often arise when installing a ceiling fan. To avoid the safety risks and hassle involved, and to boost efficiency and style at home, find a model you like and contact Reliables HVAC team.


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