Weirdest Ceiling Fan Problem

Reply

  #1  
Old 07-01-13, 03:55 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Weirdest Ceiling Fan Problem

Hi Everyone, I'm new to the forum and hope you can help.

I just installed a harbor breeze crosswinds ceiling fan with light fixture and remote. I am replacing track lighting that was on the ceiling. The track lighting was connected to a dimmer switch. After I finished installing the ceiling fan everything worked correctly however it was making a strange humming sound and the lights didn't seem to be fully lighting up. After some research I found that the dimmer switch I was using was not one that was compatible with the fan. I purchased a new switch and then realized I didn't have the correct wiring for a 3 Way switch for a fan. Instead I just used a normal rocker switch and got everything hooked up the and the lights on the fan came on however now the remote no longer works. This means I can also not get the fan to spin, chains dont work either. I tried wiring the fan directly to power bypassing the switch completely however the lights turn on yet the remote and the fan do not work. I tried hooking it back up to the old dimmer and everything worked fine including the remote and the fan. Is there anything that I haven't done already they can help me figure out how to get this to without the old dimmer switch so I can get rid of it and just use either a rocker switch or wired directly to power?

Thanks for any of the help I hope I explained this correctly and I can upload any pictures or more information if you need it.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 07-01-13, 04:37 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,967
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
Welcome to the forums! Since 3 way switches have three wires, how did you connect them to a regular spst switch? Is the fan/light controlled by a three way switch, or just the track lighting. What does the track lighting have to do with the fan/light?
 
  #3  
Old 07-01-13, 01:40 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks Chandler!

Sorry, guess I didn't explain this very well, it was 4 am when I posted and I was really tired

So let me try this again. Originally there was track lighting in the room (just thought that detail may be important) and the wife hated it, so I took it down to put up a fan. There are three wires in the box on the ceiling. Hot, common, and ground. Those were run to a dimmer switch on the wall. The dimmer switch was not for a fan, so when I got everything hooked up, the fan buzzed and didn't seem to be getting full power. However, everything worked, light, fan, & remote.

The 3-way switch I bought never worked, I am dumb and didn't realize that did not have the wiring for it. So we can forget that part. I grabbed a standard rocker switch and plugged the fan lead into one end and the hot power lead into the other. Light on the fan turns on, but nothing else works. The remote or the fan portion, including the chain for the fan. The chain for the light works though.

Took the switch out of the equation completely and connected the fan lead directed to the hot power lead and same thing. Light works, but nothing else. Just for troubleshooting sake, I connected the old dimmer switch again, and voila everything works. I am at a complete loss.

Hopefully this clears some things up. The fan is simple wiring, color to color from the fan to the remote receiver. Then hot and common from the ceiling to the receiver. Why would it work on the dimmer but not on anything else? Using my multimeter and voltage looks the same either way.

Thanks again for any help!
 
  #4  
Old 07-01-13, 02:32 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Hot, common, and ground
Common is a term associated with three way switches. I believe you mean neutral.

The fan is simple wiring, color to color from the fan to the remote receiver.
Not sure what you mean. Normally the fan would have a white wire, a blue wire, and a black wire. Is that what you have?

If the receiver controls the fan and the light there would be a neutral (white), line in wire from the switch box (probably black) and two load out wires (red and maybe red/white or blue), one for the fan motor and one for the fan light. Is that what you have?

Grounds not relevant for function therefore not included in description. Grounds will be any, bare, green, or green/yellow wire.
 
  #5  
Old 07-01-13, 05:42 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Sorry you are correct, neutral.

The fans wiring is blue, white, and black. The receiver has the same three colors and I wired them together. There is also a red and second white wire. Red connects to the hot wire in the ceiling and white to the neutral.

Red = 120v
White = neutral
Blue = fan
Black = light
White = common
 
  #6  
Old 07-01-13, 06:20 PM
Nashkat1's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,470
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
Blue = fan
Black = light
This is uncommon. Usually the black is the motor and the blue is the light.However, if, when you say
The fans wiring is blue, white, and black. The receiver has the same three colors and I wired them together.
you mean that you spliced three pairs of wires together color-to-color, that sounds standard.

Took the switch out of the equation completely and connected the fan lead directed to the hot power lead and same thing. Light works, but nothing else. Just for troubleshooting sake, I connected the old dimmer switch again, and voila everything works. I am at a complete loss.
I don't doubt it. This part makes no sense at all. In fact, it's unbelievable. I would try it again - only this time I would also take the receiver out of the equation by splicing the fan/light wires to the appropriate ceiling wires.

The dimmer switch was not for a fan,
There's no such thing as a dimmer switch for a fan. Do you mean that it was a dimmer rather than a fan motor controller?

The 3-way switch I bought never worked, I am dumb and didn't realize that did not have the wiring for it. So we can forget that part.
Hey, everybody makes dumb mistakes. That's not who they are, it's just something they did. If you want to look and feel smarter, and if the remote receiver/controller is not integrated into the fan you bought, you should be able to replace it with either a two-wire fan/light control that mounts in the switch box, such as a two wire fan/light wall control for Hunter Original fans or a hand-held control such as a Fan/Light Universal Remote Control, that hangs on the wall when you want it to.

But first you need to get the power working. Can you post a link to the installation instructions for the fan you bought?
 
  #7  
Old 07-01-13, 06:23 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Red = 120v
White = neutral
Blue = fan
Black = light
White = common
Is that a guess on your part or is that what the instructions really said? I would expect:
  • power in black from the switch box to go to the black on the receiver
  • red on the receiver to go to the fans black
  • Blue of the receiver to go to the fans blue which is the fans light.

Echo... echo. Nash types faster.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 07-01-13 at 06:40 PM.
  #8  
Old 07-02-13, 02:00 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Alright, wow, thanks for the in depth replies. Sorry, was at hockey tonight where I got a razzing and also some help from some of my teammates who are contractors.

They recommended exactly what you guys also recommended. I went straight home and removed the receiver from equation and everything works just as it should on the chains.

Yes when I wired the receiver to the fan I followed the colors as per the instructions and the tags on the wires. The fan is a Harbor Breeze Crosswinds that I bought from Lowes.

You are correct, my terminology for these things isn't the best. There WAS a light dimmer switch, and I attempted to put in a fan control switch. That is gone now, since I didn't have the proper wiring for it to begin with. There is just a standard rocker switch for on/off now.

My teammates believe the receiver issue working when connected through the dimmer switch may just be a red herring. They believe the receiver is defective or I possibly damaged it when I hooked up the fan originally to the aforementioned dimmer switch. I did hear some buzzing originally and it seemed to be underpowered. The fact that it continues to only work if I have the dimmer switch hooked up is not an indication that the wiring I have done is somehow incorrect, it is just that for some reason, who knows why, it will work there, but the only way to know for sure is to replace the receiver. This is particularly true now that we know everything works fine minus the receiver.

I know that part sounds weird, hence my asking for help. I have installed numerous ceiling fans and this is the first time I have run into this problem, and even with an electrician troubleshooting it over the phone with me, we couldn't get the remote/receiver to function properly without being hooked through that dimmer.

I will swap the receiver at Lowes in the next day or so and throw a new one in and see what happens. Chains are fine, just would like to use the remote since it was included in the purchase and at this point I want to WIN against the fan
 
  #9  
Old 07-02-13, 08:06 AM
Nashkat1's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,470
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
I went straight home and removed the receiver from equation and everything works just as it should on the chains.
Aha!

They believe the receiver is defective or I possibly damaged it when I hooked up the fan originally to the aforementioned dimmer switch.
I was wondering about that. Your teammates sound like a fairly sharp and experienced bunch. A good resource to have.

I will swap the receiver at Lowes in the next day or so and throw a new one in and see what happens.
Good. Besides letting you WIN against the fan and get everything you paid for, using the remote is healthier for the fan motor than using an on/off switch. Unless you always switch the fan to High with the pull chain before turning it off.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: