Don't Hire a Handyman! How to Install a Ceiling Fan Yourself

man installing a ceiling fan

A new ceiling fan is a thrifty DIY to keep cool and way to reduce your energy bills. A fan installation is the perfect small project that only takes a few hours to complete. You don't need a handyman!

If you have already changed out noisy old fan blades for quiet plastic fan blades or fixed a wall fan, you can do this.

As long as your room already has a ceiling outlet, you only need some basic tools to begin the project. With some patience and a ladder, you can take these instructions, install that fan and sit down in cool comfort in less than a weekend.

Read on to learn how to install a ceiling fan.

Safety First

Before you begin any project, read the instructions and gather your needed materials and tools within arms reach.

  • Turn off the power off before beginning.
  • Check the ceiling clearance and
  • Get a UL-Listed outlet box marked "Acceptable for Fan Support".
  • Double-check that the electrical connections comply with local codes, ordinances, or National Electric Codes.
  • Read the manufacturer's instructions.

This cannot be stressed enough, turn off the power at the circuit breaker, not just the light switch.

Tools and Materials

Gather your tools, the fan, and electrical box to a spot close to you. You will need:

  • Crescent Wrench
  • Cordless Drill with extra bits (long and short)
  • Level
  • Voltage Tester
  • Wire Cutters/Strippers
  • Pliers
  • Screwdrivers
  • Electrical Tape
  • Ladder
  • Dust Mask
  • Safety Glasses

Once you have what you need, time to start the project!

How to Install a Ceiling Fan

Follow this simple walkthrough.

Step 1

Turn off the power at the circuit panel. Use a voltage tester or turn off the power to the whole house before attempting to install a ceiling fan. Double check that the wires are not live before cutting or pulling them.

Step 2

Remove the old fixture cover and bulbs. Unscrew the fasteners holding the fixture base to the ceiling box. Remove the fixture base. Disconnect the wires to the outlet box.

Step 3

Remove the existing outlet box.

Step 4

Install the new hangar bar and UL-approved outlet box.

Step 5

Assemble the fan. Ceiling fans are heavy and need support while you attach them. Some fans have a way to safely hang from the outlet box while you attach the wires. You may need some help at this point.

Step 6

Screw in the fan assembly to the outlet box.

Step 7

Install the decorative trim and fan blades.

Step 8

Restore power and test your work. Does it turn on and off, and operate on all speed settings?

Check the lights, if any. If your fan includes a reverse function, check if the fan blades spin in the opposite direction.

More Helpful How-Tos

We hope that you've found our guide on how to install a ceiling fan guide. Be sure to read other articles to learn more about electrical, plumbing, landscaping and other DIY improvements.


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