How to Replace a Ceiling Fan Pull Chain Switch Part 1 How to Replace a Ceiling Fan Pull Chain Switch Part 1

What You'll Need
Stepladder
Pull switch assembly
Screwdriver
Wire cutters
Voltage tester
Wire Connectors
Electrical tape

A ceiling fan pull switch is not designed to last forever. When it gives out or breaks, you can easily replace it without using any special tools or equipment. Follow the simple steps below.

Step 1 - Power Off

You should never work on any electrical appliance if there’s a danger of power still feeding through to it. When you’re replacing a fan pull switch, the safest method is to locate which breaker controls the fan and switch it off. If the appliance is controlled by a wall switch rather than wired directly, you can just ensure the wall switch is off, but the extra level of security is better.

Step 2 - Accessing the Chain

With the power off, set up your stepladder under the ceiling fan. You’re going to need to remove the light shade first. This will be held in place by a bolt at the bottom on the shade. Loosen this, with your other hand holding the shade, and taking it as it comes away. Set aside. Remove the light bulbs and put them away safely with the shade.

The light fixture part of the ceiling fan is held on by a number of screws which you’ll now be able to see. Unscrew both of these and pull the light fixture away from the fan. You’ll be able to see the wires and also the pull switch assembly. At this point, use your voltage tester on the ceiling fan pull switch to confirm that the power is really off before proceeding.

Step 3 - Freeing the Wires

You’ll probably soon see that the wiring looks like a tangle. The wires for the pull switch will be crimped to other wires in the fixture. As it stands, you won’t be able to replace the switch. What you need to do is take your wire cutters and cut the wires as close to the switch as you possibly can. This will enable you to remove the old switch. Throw it away, as you’ll have no further use for it.

Step 4 - No Tangle

Where the wiring is much more straightforward, you’ll have an easier task. There will be a cap at the point the pull chain leaves the body of the fan. The chain will emerge from this cap. Remove the cap by unscrewing it. Now you’ll be able to get to the switch for the pull chain. There will be two black wires that are connected to wires inside the fan. Remove the wire connectors, loosen the wires, and you’ll be able to remove the old switch. Discard it.

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