The Ceiling Fan Works Intermittently – Check Out These Steps!

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One of the questions we get a lot at Sgelectricsb is, “Why does my ceiling fan work intermittently?” So, as local electricians in Santa Barbara, Ca, we have decided to address this issue for our customers (and beyond!)

In short, there are a few reasons this could be happening:

  1. The speed selector switch may not be making good contact.
  2. The wires that supply power to the fan may have come loose.
  3. The capacitor in the fan may be going bad.

We’ll go into detail about each of these issues below so you can determine the likely culprit in your ceiling fan’s intermittent behavior.

Related Post: Ceiling Fan Stopped Working Then Started Again – Here’s What to

Why does my ceiling fan work intermittently?

The short answer is enough if you want to stop here, but if you want to know more about each of these issues and how to fix them, read on!

**Important Note** Never attempt electrical repairs if you don't feel comfortable or confident in your abilities—it's not worth the risk. And, if you live in Santa Barbara, CA, you'll be happy to know that Sgelectricsb offers many electrical services, including ceiling fan repairs.

1. The speed selector switch may not be making good contact

The speed selector switch is the switch that controls the speed of your ceiling fan. Over time, this switch can become loose, causing it to make poor contact and resulting in your ceiling fan working intermittently.

To fix this, simply tighten the switch with a screwdriver. If the button is still not making good contact, you may need to replace it. It is highly recommended that you call a qualified electrician to do this for you.

2. The wires that supply power to the fan may have come loose

Another reason your ceiling fan may be working intermittently is that the wires supplying power to the fan have come loose. Out of all the electrical problems I have seen in my years as an electrician, 95% percent of them were due to bad connections.

The fix is simple (requires an electrician): just tighten the wires with a screwdriver. If the cables are still loose, you may need to replace them.

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3. The capacitor in the fan may be going bad

The capacitor is a small component in the fan that helps start the motor and keep it running smoothly. However, this component can fail over time, causing the fan to work intermittently.

If you suspect the capacitor is the issue, it’s best to call a qualified electrician to replace it for you.

Can you fix a ceiling fan’s intermittent behavior yourself?

The issues mentioned earlier are some of the major ones we see at Sgelectricsb, but there are other potential causes of intermittent ceiling fan behavior. For example, this can be due to another internal component failure, a loose wire in the wall switch, or even a problem with the house’s electrical panel.

As you can see, there are a lot of potential causes of intermittent operation of ceiling fans—some of which you can fix yourself and some of which require the help of a qualified electrician. So, when it comes to improving your ceiling fan, use your best judgment and, if in doubt, always err on the side of caution and call a professional.

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Who is Sgelectricsb and what is its mission?

Sgelectricsb’s mission is to give detailed, high-quality electrical repairs and installations to the people of Santa Barbara. We have ceiling fan repair service as one of many services we offer. But because so many customers in a specific location were intermittently having issues with ceiling fan work, we decided to put together a quick guide on the subject. Ceiling fan problems can be confusing, but please don’t hesitate to ask us questions if you need help understanding what might be going wrong!

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