Do you know that a ceiling fan can be repaired? The ceiling fan is one of the most reliable appliance in the house. They usually last many many years without trouble.

Modern fans usually have an electronic circuit board. If you have fans with remote control, timer or natural breeze with variable speed, then they will probably have a small electronic circuit board in it. This board can be damaged by lightning strikes and usually you have to get a replacement from the manufacturer if it is damaged. If the fan is too old or you cannot locate replacement parts, then you probably have to get a new fan.

Traditional ceiling fans without any electronic circuit boards tends to last longer since they are less susceptible to damage by lightning or power surge. They do have electrical parts which is usually a capacitor. These tend to be more robust compared to integrated circuits. Quite often the part that is damaged is the capacitor. The capacitor is quite cheap, usually just a few ringgit and can be easily replaced. Both modern and simple ceiling fans have capacitors. It is a key component that makes the fan spin.

How do you know if the capacitor is damaged? These are the symptoms:-

  • the ceiling fan does not start but makes a humming noise
  • it spins very slowly
  • it spins only if you help it get started by pushing on the blades

If your ceiling fan has any of these symptoms, then very likely, it is the capacitor needs to be replaced. To confirm if the capacitor is the culprit, when you take a closer look at it, a damaged, capacitor will have a bulge, looked aged or even have a burnt smell. This confirms that it needs to be replaced. If it does not have any of these signs, the the ceiling fan malfunction may be caused by other problem.

The capacitor is usually located under the cone that sits above the fan. It is usually square or round in shape. Some have 2 wires, while some have 3, 4 or more wires. See the photo below. In this instance, the capacitor, it is the black rectangular box.

RepairCeilingFan

Here’s another view from another angle.

RepairCeilingFan2

As you can see from the photos, it is quite easy to replace. However, you must get a similar capacitor. There will be markings on it. For Malaysia, the voltage of such capacitor must be rated at or above 240v. It is common to have a capacitor rated at 400v but do not get anything that is lower. The other rating is the capacitance, denoted in μF or micro Farad.

If you are not sure how to go about replacing the capacitor, then get an electrician. At the very least, you’ll know that is should not cost too much to replace.

If you plan to do it yourself, then you must buy the part at electronic or electrical repair shops. Shops that sell new television and household appliances usually do not sell them. Bring along the old capacitor and you will be able to get the right one.

Before you remove any wires, make sure you take the necessary precautions and switch off the power. Use a test pen to make sure there really is no more power going to the fan. Then mark the wires so that you can put them back they way they were.

This is how to repair a ceiling fan from simple malfunction.

Note – this DIY repair involves mains voltage. You can get killed by electricity. If you do not know what you are doing, then leave it to the professionals.

 


Comments

Repair A Ceiling Fan — 16 Comments

  1. Great info!

    How & where do able to get the circuit board + capasitor for my Euro Uno (model CF300). How much does the board cost?

    Tq

    • Steve,

      for the circuit board, only the manufacturer will have replacements. I found Euro Uno’s Sales and Service is at Lot 1, Persiaran Sungai Buloh, Taman Sains Selangor 1, Kota Damansara, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. Tel Phone number: 03 61572999. Hope it helps.

  2. I have several Pensonic’s sole model 3 speed ceilling fans and they have been giving me problem endlessly.

    These fan are of the remote control type which circuit boards have been replaced during the warranty period. Within a couple of months later the same problem arises.

    Now one of the fan will switch on on low speed only but continuously bleep (very irritating). The other will run on middles speed and if you try to use the fast speed, the fan simply stop functioning.

    Is there any way I can do without the circuit board (or for that matter by pass the need for a remote control too)and “set” the fan to run on high speed only as soon as I switch on the main wall switch?

    Do you any any other suggestion (alternative “standard” circuit board)?

    Thank you.

    rgds

    hwee

  3. Hi Hwee, don’t think there are any standard circuit board. You may want to get someone to try to modify the fan. At the end of the day, might be just cheaper to replace with a non remote fan at just over RM100 each with warranty. Perhaps your area is lightning prone or voltage fluctuations that can damage the sensitive circuit boards

  4. As a part of repairs, maintenance may involve the following operations: inspections, replacements, adjustments and even cleaning. Performing maintenance in the right way can be good for preventing expensive emergencies. An example of work that can help people avoid unpleasant situations can be the series of tests and adjustment that are necessary each year when homeowners have alarm systems installed. Issues can also be prevented with a good household management. Placing a moisture barrier beneath roof tiles may be good against leaks..:’,

  5. Hi, my Deka remote control ceiling fan had the problem of slow speed and continuously beeping, speed cannot be changed. Do you think it is the circuit board problem or capacitor problem? Thanks.

    • Perhaps its better to change the entire controller. I’ve seen people use different controllers when the old one is damage i.e. slow turning on certain speeds. Not sure if it is 100% safe. Any electrical engineer want to chime in?

  6. Hi, I have the exact same fan type as the photos you have provided above. I recently changed the capacitor of the fan as I realized the fan was spinning too slow. However, now that the fan is back to normal speed, there is an intermittent buzzing/grinding sound. It happens at all fan speeds and even after the fan is off as the blades slows down. I hope you would advice if you have any clue on what may be the cause of this noise. This noise has resulted in some sleepless nights. Any form of help is greatly appreciated. Thank you!

      • At first I suspected it was the cone-shaped cover on top of the fan that was rubbing against it. However after lifting the cover up, the sound still persists. I have tried lubricating the fan however it does not help the situation. The sound does not increase with speed and is irregular frequencies, does not have a specific pattern of occurrence. Besides that, I have realized that if I had left my fan running all night long, the sound diminishes by the morning.

        • It could be the rubber bush/part holding up the fan. As the fan runs, it sways back and forth a bit. Wind from a window will cause the swaying to change a bit, thus that could be the problem. That tends to have squeaky sounds. Else the motor bearing has worn, so when the fan sways, it grinds/rubs against something occasionally.

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