Ceiling fans can change your life – or at the very least your outlook on life – with just a flip of the switch on a hot, stuffy, muggy day. There’s something magical about the way they can change the entire way a room feels, making it comfortable in seconds.
But what happens when this miracle-worker of a ceiling fixture starts affecting the ambiance in ways it shouldn’t? A noisy, squeaky ceiling fan will make the room it’s in unbearable no matter the temperature. If your noisy ceiling fan is making you miserable, it might be easier to fix than you realize. With just a little investigation and willingness to tinker, you could be on your way to cooler days ahead.
There are a number of reasons your fan may be making more noise than it should – we’ll go over some of the most common issues and what you can do to bring back the peace and quiet.
1. Problem: Dirt
Just like every other surface of your home, your ceiling fan collects dust over time. This is especially true if your fan sits idle over the winter months, but even a fan that’s on 24/7 will get dirty over time.
Take a damp rag and wipe down your ceiling fan, starting from the top. Be sure to wipe all sides and edges of the blades. If dirt was the culprit, you’ll notice right away that your fan is quieter once you’re done.
2. Problem: Damaged Blades
Over time, some fan blades may warp. This is especially true for fans that have blades made of cheap composite materials, fans in humid environments, and extra-wide fans. Look at each blade from the side – each blade should be tilted at the same angle and lay flat. If you find a blade that is bent or wavy, it could be throwing off the balance of your fan, causing it to wobble.
If you can, carefully bend the blade back into shape. If it’s not fixable, you may be able to order a replacement blade from the manufacturer.
3. Problem: Loose Parts
When your ceiling fan is in use there are a lot of moving parts, but if a part that shouldn’t be moving has come loose, you’ll hear a rattling sound. Thoroughly check your fan for loose screws. Common pieces that come loose include the canopy (the piece against the ceiling), the light kit (some fans may not have lights), and the fan blades.
Using a screwdriver, carefully tighten each screw you can find. Be careful not to over-tighten any screws, as it could damage your fan. If your fan has parts that snap into place, like a light cover, make sure those parts are seated properly.
If you’ve checked all of the above and your fan still seems to be rattling or unstable, you may need to remove the canopy and double-check that the mounting screws attaching your fan to the ceiling are secure.
4. Problem: Grinding in the Motor
If the simple fixes above don’t resolve your noisy fan woes, it’s possible that the motor in your fan is running without sufficient oil. Ceiling fan motors and bearings need lubricant to run smoothly – without it, you may notice a sound that’s more like a buzz than a rattle. Each ceiling fan has different requirements for the proper way to add oil to the motor. We recommend checking your manufacturer’s user manual for specific instructions.
If you’re not comfortable with taking your fan apart to get to the motor, this task might be a good place to bring in a professional.
Turning on your ceiling fan on a hot day should be a dream come true, not your worst nightmare. The good news is – most noisy ceiling fans can be fixed with nothing more than a thorough cleaning and a checkup with a screwdriver. In less than an hour you can be back to enjoying a blissful breeze in the comfort of your home.
If your fan is still making noise after you’ve checked for dirt, loose parts, and damaged blades, and oiled the motor, it might be time for a new, quality ceiling fan that can keep you cool for years to come.
Before you go out and buy the first fan you see – stop by our showroom and ask around. Our lighting experts can help you find what you’re looking for, and we guarantee that our fans won’t start squeaking at the first sign of a heatwave!