Silence Squeaks: How To Stop A Squeaking Ceiling Fan

28 September 2015
 Categories: , Blog


A ceiling fan is supposed to bring you comfort by circulating air in the room, and usually produces a calming noise. If they ever start to make squeaking or buzzing noises, the cause could range from something simple to complex. However, it doesn't mean you need to buy a new fan. Here are some tips on how to fix squeaking ceiling fans. 

Turn Off the Power and Gather Tools

For this project, find something to stand on to help you access the fan like a ladder, hair, or stool. You will also need:

  • a damp rag
  • hand-held vacuum or feather duster
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • machine oil
  • yardstick
  • a penny
  • canned air or lubricant

Turn off power to the fan to avoid electrocution. To be on the safe side, use a voltage meter to ensure no power is coming to the fan.

Inspect the Blades

Set the chair, stool, or ladder on a secure area to access the fan, and have someone hold it for you for extra safety. Squeaking noises can be caused by loose blades, out of balance blades, or dirt. Clean dirt and grime off each blade with a cloth and coat them with lubricant or apply canned air to remove debris that could be causing the noise. Inspect each blade to see if they wiggle and tighten loose blades with a screwdriver.

Measure the distance of each blade with the yardstick from the ceiling down adjusting ones that are not the same distance. A blade not the same distance as the others can cause noise. To test blade balance, fasten a penny with tape on one blade base at a time. If extra weight stops the squeaking, buy a ceiling fan balancing kit from a home supply store.

Tighten Light Fixtures and Oil the Motor

The motion of the fan can make loose light fixtures vibrate which cause them to rub against metal. Check each light fixture for tightness, and tighten loose fixtures with the screwdriver. Also, inspect the globes to see if the rubber covers are in place.

Remove the motor housing and clean dust with the feather duster or a hand-held vacuum. Lubricate the motor with several drops of machine oil over the bearings or hole. Don't use anything other than an oil based lubricant on the motor.

Turn the power back on, and try the fan after each repair. Sometimes, it is only something simple causing the squeaking noise. If you can't find the source of the fan noise, you will need an electrician (such as one from Action Electric) to properly dismount the fan, and troubleshoot the cause.