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Old 07-04-2018, 11:06 PM   #1
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Default Ceiling fan capacitor

Has anyone had any luck fixing a ceiling fan by replacing the capacitor?

I have a ceiling fan in our computer room/home office. One day I noticed it was making a louder than usual hum, and spinning on low speed. I tried putting it on high from the wall fan speed control, but it didn't change the speed, and still hums. The fan is kind of futuristic and has no pull chains to change speed.

I took out the combination light dimmer/speed controller from the wall, and removed the matching remote from under the canopy. I wired the fan straight though. Still only low speed with a louder than normal hum. Looking at the wiring I noticed a rectangular box 5uf capacitor that looked impregnated. It looked like it was in its third trimester.

I know I should call an electrician and this is not a DIY site, but has anyone ever replaced one of these. I went online and sure enough there is a market for these things. I ordered one, and it should be in in a few days.

They didn't have any at the Home Depot, and every guy I asked said they weren't an electrician.

Any thoughts?
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Old 07-04-2018, 11:17 PM   #2
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Call a electrician

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Old 07-04-2018, 11:36 PM   #3
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Old 07-04-2018, 11:42 PM   #4
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I have fixed a couple of fans with replacing the capicator.. But for a new one I've had to order from Amazon. Anytime I take out a ceiling fan I usually gut it for the pull switches and capicators. Now I have a few motors, switches and capicators laying on the shelf.

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Old 07-05-2018, 12:32 AM   #5
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Seeing a bubbled capacitor always made me happy, knew it was going to be an easy fix! Assuming you donít have a meter that tests capacitance, seeing a bubble is the easiest way to tell if a capacitor has gone bad (though sometimes a bad cap wonít be bubbled).

Replacing that one will almost certainly solve your problem. And fyi, any hvac supply or electric motor store will have a wide range of caps in abundance.
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Old 07-05-2018, 01:12 AM   #6
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:04 AM   #7
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Call an electrician.. If they can't troubleshoot a ceiling fan or a capacitor, call a real one...
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:31 AM   #8
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You're going to lock a guy who has been here seven years and has 1472 posts? Brutal.

I don't have any advice. If it was a customer, I would tell him to go to HD and buy a new one (except I go into hiding whenever a ceiling fan is mentioned).
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:09 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the input.

I called a local electronic place near me before I ordered it online. I can't believe no one around here has one. I would just replace the fan, but the wife always liked this one.

I don't have a tester for capacitance anymore. I didn't feel like cutting it out and seeing if it takes a charge on the resistance scale, and then reversing the meter. I know that's a half assed test.

I don't think I've ever heard any one fixing a ceiling fan before. Makes sense to cut out the working parts of old ones. I used to do stuff like that when I did service work type of stuff.

Thanks again! Maybe if the fan does need to be replaced, I'll call Angie's list. Then grab a chair and tell the guy how to do his job
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99cents View Post
I don't have any advice. If it was a customer, I would tell him to go to HD and buy a new one (except I go into hiding whenever a ceiling fan is mentioned).
You must have heard me giving advice to some apprentice years ago. I tell em to find a handyperson after they buy the fan.
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:50 AM   #11
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Quote:
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You must have heard me giving advice to some apprentice years ago. I tell em to find a handyperson after they buy the fan.
I would rather do heat trace on the coldest day of winter than hang a ceiling fan .
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Old 07-05-2018, 09:56 AM   #12
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I enjoy occasionally repairing appliances (for myself or family only) for cheap just to get the bonus life out of them. I think I replaced just about every part on my washing machine at my last house, some x3; that thing was a tank and I stretched it to 25 yrs or so.

last xmas when i was up in NY, my wife's niece was getting ready to buy a new fridge cause the "appliance guy" wanted 600 bucks to fix the ice maker in their almost new one. sheesh. ten dollar solenoid that I had to pay 75 over the counter for.

good luck with the clg fan.
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Old 07-05-2018, 11:41 AM   #13
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Even though most of this crap is made to be disposable any more, I'll fix it sometimes because besides the cost savings sometimes it's easier to replace in place than the full rip out and replace.
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Old 07-05-2018, 01:36 PM   #14
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Im more than willing to waste a day to fix something then once its fixed im more than willing to trash it and buy a new one. I think i have a mental problem where i just need to know why its broken.
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Old 07-05-2018, 01:50 PM   #15
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Am I truly one of the only "fantricians" around here Seriously though, Lowes has a tendency to carry quite a few replacement fan parts, as with most lighting showrooms...
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