How to Take Down a Ceiling Fan? Here’s how To Do It Safely

How to Take Down a Ceiling Fan? Here’s how To Do It Safely


Flip off the circuit breaker that controls the ceiling fan. Mount a ladder under the fan. Confirm that no electricity is entering the device with a non-contact circuit tester held near the motor, checking for an absence of chirps or flashing lights.


Removing A Ball And Socket Ceiling Fan

  1. Turn off the electrical power at the electrical panel. 
  2. Using the step ladder, remove the metal canopy covering the mounting bracket. Unscrew the screws to remove this, and keep in mind you may need to use a short screwdriver to reach all the screws. Lower the canopy to rest on the fan. 
  3. Test to make sure there is no electrical current using your voltage tester. 
  4. Remove the wire nuts, and the wires. Put the nuts back on the wires coming from the ceiling as it will prevent any accidents if you have to turn the power back on. 
  5. Hold the fan tightly, and slide the ball at the top of the fan pole out of the mounting bracket. 
  6. Lower the fan to the ground, or pass to a helper, if you have one. 
  7. The mounting bracket is usually attached to the electrical box by two screws. Unscrew them and remove the bracket. Put the screws back into the electrical box to make sure they don’t get lost.

Great read: ceiling fans for bedrooms

Step 11: The Finishing Touches

All that’s left to do is install the bulbs and then place the shade or light cover over the top. When you are confident that everything is where it should be, turn on the circuit breaker to that room and give the light switch a test.

Step 9: Tightening the Wire Nuts

With the wires properly paired up with one another, all that is left to do with them is cover them and tuck them away. Screw a wire nut over each of the twisted wire bare ends. You want to tighten the wire nuts until they feel tight but be careful to not overtighten.

When you over-tighten these wire nuts it can strip them, loosening the connection. When that happens, the connection can arc and come apart. With the wire nuts secure, tuck them carefully back into the electrical box.

Breaking Down the Fan

With your ladder in place and your screwdriver in hand, you can begin to remove the components of your fan. The light kits that come with most ceiling fans can be removed (often unscrewed) by hand. Take that off first. Once you get to the fan blades, you’ll need your screwdriver.

How Do I Remove Ceiling Fan Blades?

With the light fixture out of the way, you’ll have much easier access to the fan blade attachments. Depending on the configuration of your ceiling fan, the screws that hold the fan blades in place may be facing you or the ceiling. Use the screwdriver to remove the screws and each fan blade one at a time. Most fan blades will have two screws each.


Examine the mount previously hidden by the canopy to learn how to disengage the motor and its housing. You may have to push a pin out of a support bracket and dangle the motor on a wire support hook built in to support the motor, while the installer wires the device. Alternatively, a safety cable may run from a screw in the joist above to the ceiling fan downrod, which is screwed into the top of the motor housing. Ideally, consult manufacturer’s literature before you mount the ladder to determine if the aforementioned pin, or alternatively a ball notch or other connector, links the downrod to the mounting bracket.

4.  Separate connected ceiling fan wiring

With downrod fans, you’ll need to remove the canopy first. Then you can begin removing the wire nuts and disconnecting the fan wires from the house wires. If your ceiling fan has a remote receiver wired in the canopy, be sure to remove the wire nuts and disconnect the remote receiver wires from the fan and ceiling. 

Once you remove the light and blades from your low-profile fans, you can remove the canopy to begin disconnecting the wires from the fan, ceiling, and any remote receiver. Low profile ceiling fans often attach to the mounting bracket from a hinge on one side that you can rest the fan, making it easier for you to use both hands for unwiring the ceiling fan.

NOTE: If you are uncomfortable with the wiring portion of removing a ceiling fan, consult with a certified, professional electrician.

Safety Tips

Safety Tips

There are some safety tips that you should always keep in mind when working with electricity within your home. 

  • Most circuit breakers will have separate circuit breakers for different areas of your home. If you can’t find the right one, turn off the main breaker. Some circuit breakers have a lock that can prevent others from turning the breaker back on. If yours has a lock, use it. 
  • If your home has a older model fuse panel, remove the fuse. If you can’t find the right circuit, shut down the power to the whole house. Keep one hand in your pocket when removing the fuse, so that you’re not handling it with both hands. 
  • You may also want to leave a note at the distribution box to let any electrical workmen know that you are working on the circuit. 
  • Always check that the circuit is dead before you begin working on any wires. Use a socket tester, or a voltage tester. 
  • As rubber doesn’t conduct electricity, wear rubber soled shoes or boots. 
  • Make sure you use high quality tools, such as pliers, and screwdrivers, as cheaper quality tools may snap or break, causing accidents. 
  • Also, make sure your tools have rubber coated handles to help prevent any electricity going through your body. 


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