Installing a ceiling fan: step by step

Fighting the heat is not only possible with air conditioners. Ceiling fans produce fresh air and are easy to install, in a short series of steps.

Last update: August 28, 2021

When summer approaches and the nights of intense heat, home cooling methods become indispensable. Although many houses have air conditioners, they tend to have high energy consumption. That is why there are those who choose to replace or complement them with the installation of a ceiling fan.

These devices generate a more natural breeze, thanks to their blades that stir the air. They make little noise and are combinable with the aesthetics of the room. There are models of various materials, designed to adapt to each environment in the house.

Installation is a simple task, suitable for doing yourself. It is enough to have basic tools, such as screwdrivers, ladder and drill. It is also important know what type of material the roof is made of.

1. Know the ceiling

This previous step is important, since some elements for the installation of a ceiling fan depend on the materials with which the house was built. For example, those that are forged of reinforced concrete require metal expansion studs to support the weight of the object.

Those with ceramic vaults require rocker dump blocks, which are fasteners made of steel. On the other hand, there are those known as false ceilings, made with plaster or plasterboard panels. In this case, rocker dump blocks are also used, which are inserted into the holes in those ceilings and then open, like a kind of umbrella.

These constructions are usually less resistant, so if there are doubts as to their condition, it is best to consult a professional before starting the work. In any case, it is important to make sure that the roof is in good general condition. In addition, the installation area must not be cracked and no pipes or other objects have to pass nearby.

Roofs are different in materials and construction. That determines the ideal grip for a fan.

2. Disconnect and disassemble

The first step is to cut off the general power supply, since you will be working with light cables. Then, remove the previous covers or installations and loosen the screws that hold those cables. Most fans include lighting, an aspect to take into account when choosing your location.

3. Place the ceiling and support

The next thing is to place the lighting panel. To do this with precision, it is advisable to mark with a pencil the exact points where the plugs will be placed.

Once the space is established, drill holes. You always have to be careful when using this tool. If you are not sure, consult someone experienced.

The thickness of the holes must be the same size as the studs. In general, 5 millimeters. Then insert them into each hole and adjust until the support is firm. This resistance is responsible for supporting the weight of the fan, so it is essential that its placement and adjustment are correct.

4. Assemble the blades

One of the most important details in the installation of a ceiling fan is the assembly of the blades. The specific indications for each model are usually in the manufacturer's manual.

Usually, first tighten the screws of each and then the entire structure is placed on the central base. Always screwing safely, but without forcing too much, as it can distort the mechanism.

5. Electrical connection

Connecting the cables is a step that requires attention. Products sometimes include clamps, that is, splice tabs that hold the cables. Nevertheless, the general rule is that each color should be matched with its similar pair.

Those of phase can be brown, black or gray and have to connect with the one that is of the same tone. Like blue, which usually represents neutral. Lastly, the ground wire comes in yellow or green.

6. Hang and hide cables

It was time to raise the fan. With great caution, hang it and hold it on the hook on the bracket. Connect the terminals and the receiver. Some models come with a remote control, which includes a motor.

In these cases, the sensor has to be visible, so that it receives the signal correctly. Finally, cover the cables with the protective casing and place light bulbs, if you have one. It only remains to reactivate the electrical connection and check that everything works well.

Recommendations for choosing the location of a ceiling fan

It is important to consider the size of the room. The larger the room, the larger the fan will be needed.

As for the place, it is usually placed in the center, to promote a more homogeneous air distribution. Another aspect to consider is that it has to have a minimum distance of 2.5 meters from the ground.

It is recommended that the blades respect a 50-centimeter margin with any nearby object or wall, so that they can rotate comfortably. In turn, they are about 25 centimeters from the ceiling.

The most common fans have 4 or 5 blades, but there are 3 and 5 or more. Everyone must follow the measurement rules: in spaces of up to 13 square meters, blades of a maximum length of 107 cm can be used. For places between 13 and 18 square meters the blades range from 107 to 132 centimeters. In rooms of 18 to 28 square meters, a length of 132 to 160 centimeters corresponds.

Advantages of ceiling fans

The installation of a ceiling fan, in addition to being simple, has other advantages over the other methods of cooling.

Energy consumption

Its electrical energy consumption is low, with approximately between 20 and 60 watts. Many people choose to combine them with air conditioners. Some include reverse functions, which help keep the hot air from the stove lower.

Service life and maintenance

Installing a ceiling fan is usually a once-at-a-site activity. The useful life of the object is very long and its maintenance is also easy. In addition, as it is hung, it does not occupy uncomfortable spaces nor does it have to be stored.

An air conditioner is a device that consumes a lot of electrical energy and becomes expensive.


Many people choose ceiling fans because of the low noise they generate. On hot summer nights, sleeping with the fan on doesn't cause discomfort, as the motor runs with a little hum.

Variety of models

The variety of fans to choose from is growing. They can be adapted to the design of each environment. In addition, there are models with or without light, and others with LED lighting.

Prioritize quality and aesthetics

The choice of the fan also depends on the budget with which you have. However, it is advisable to invest a little more and have a quality model, which has a less noisy engine and with more resistance.

For those looking for comfort, there are remote controlled fans, which include various speeds and even timers. Regarding aesthetics, although it is personal taste, the metal ones are placed in the kitchen, while the wooden ones in the living room.