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Ceiling fans should provide an energy-efficient solution for cooling your home and distributing airflow.

Installing it in preparation for the summer makes sense – the cool breeze means you don’t need to overwork your air conditioning system.

Most homeowners don’t realize that ceiling fans help circulate the heated air in the winter, thereby keeping the living space warm.

It’s a straightforward process, whether you’re replacing an old ceiling fan or installing a new one. You’re lucky if the space directly above the installation site is accessible through the attic; if not, there’s still a convenient way to get around the added challenge.

First things first, hanging a ceiling fan from the existing electrical box is not an option.

The added weight and vibration of the new fixture would simply be too much for it to support. For those with limited access to the ceiling, there are a few options. You can either use a specially rated tower and box mount between joists or screw-in fan-rated “pancake” directly to one of the joists on your ceiling for easy installation.

The size of the room you are looking to cool determines the type of fan to purchase.

For spaces smaller than 75 square feet, blades that are less than 36 inches in length are ideal because they produce enough air movement without taking up too much space. If your living area or bedroom is bigger than 240 square feet, fans with 54-inch blades work best.

The cubic feet of air per minute (cfm) is an essential factor when deciding on which one to buy because it determines the comfort level in the living space. Also, avoid hanging your ceiling fan too close to any lighting fixture because the rotating blades under the bulb cause the lights to flicker.

Step-By-Step Installation Instructions

Step 1 – The first step always involves the removal of the existing light fixture.

Ensure the power to the circuit is shut off and carefully remove any glass or metal shades from the old light fixture. To remove a ceiling fixture, unscrew the retaining nut or screws that hold it to the ceiling. To disconnect the wires, twist off the plastic connectors from each end of the wire.

Step 2 – Remove the old electrical box so that you can cut a new hole.

Grab a flat bar to unscrew the box if it’s nailed to the joist.

If there’s no access to the screws on the joists, the only option is to take off a metal plate over the bar and pull it out. Trace a 1/2-inch-thick pancake box against the ceiling, centred on an interior joist. Next, use a drywall saw to cut along the line – be mindful of the dust.

Step 3 – You can now attach the new electrical box; in doing so, see to it that you feed the power cable coming from above through the hole punched out in the pancake box.

This is assuming that there’s already a connector to this hole on its end.

Lift the box onto the cut-out in the ceiling, and then press it tight against the bottom of the joist.

Attach the box to the joist with screws. Use a drill equipped with a driver with an appropriately sized head. Ground the wire end by wrapping it around the grounding screw in the box.

Step 4 – Use a urethane-based adhesive on the back of the ceiling medallion.

Be sure to thread the wire through the medallion before setting it into place. Situate the medallion on the pancake box and press it to fit. Use finishing nails to drive it into the joist. Once they’re set, fill in nail heads with caulk or spackle.

Step 5 – The next step involves the proper mounting of the ceiling plate.

Attach the wires to the pancake box by pushing them through the hole in its center before holding up a metal ceiling plate. Attach the ceiling plate to your box with appropriately sized machine screws if you plan on painting it. Place the medallion over top of this before applying white paint.

Step 6 – Once you’re over with the fan’s ceiling plate, it’s time to assemble the rest of the components.

Thread the wires coming from the motor to the canopy’s center point. Next, place the canopy on top of it and tighten screws securely. Ensure that the wires pass through the down-rod. Thread the down-rod through the top of the motor and adjust with a wrench. You’re better off leaving the coating on the pipe threads as it prevents the likelihood of unscrewing.

Step 7 – After setting up the rest of the components, you focus on the wire connections. Attach one of the canopy’s hooks to the ceiling plate. Connect the two green wires to the bare copper wire from the cable with the help of a twist-on wire connector. Connect the right pair of wires based on their colour. Suspend the fan against the medallion and be sure to secure it using canopy screws.

Step 8 – At this point, shift your attention to the lights and blades. Screw each blade onto the blade iron.

If you’re unfamiliar with it, the iron is the bracket holding the blade to the fan. Use the provided screws to fasten the blade irons to the motor.

The light fixture housing on the ceiling fan must be plugged into the wire that hangs from the motor’s underside.

Don’t forget to install the bulbs and shades, too. If the ceiling fan comes with remote control, then it usually has a plastic holder, too. Screw this holder to a convenient location on the wall.

Replacing or installing a ceiling fan is no straightforward affair, but it’s doable without anyone’s help. The added comfort and substantial energy savings are enough reasons to give it a try.

Final Thoughts

If you have trouble installing your fan, please give PTX Electric a call and we would be happy to help. We are experts in smaller electrical service calls.  PTX is built on integrity which means we give you the straight goods, no gouging, and no mumbo jumbo. Try out PTX today and see how we are different from other electrical contractors.



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