Can I hang a ceiling fan where a light is?

Yes, but first you must make sure the electrical box is properly braced and rated for the weight and torque of the ceiling fan you are installing. We’ll give you a few tips on how to tell if your electrical box is ok to support a ceiling fan.

You’ll need to inspect the existing box first. The best way to do that is to examine it from above, from somewhere like the attic. If the outlet box is in between floors, that’s no problem! You’ll just need to inspect it from below. There are several ways it could be supported so you’ll need to confirm which way it’s fastened to the structure. It could be screwed to wood from the sides, or the screws could go through the top of the box. If you can’t see or are unsure, you’ll need to hire an electrician to inspect it for you. This is something Swiftec can do easily!

If your light fixture is in an older home, make sure the outlet box has been fastened with screws to the bottom of the block. If it has only been mounted on one side or with nails instead of screws, it will not be able to support a ceiling fan. You will need to secure it further, or get a new outlet box.

If you need to buy a new outlet box, the manufacturer of the will indicate that it is acceptable for ceiling fan installation. If not, there are other ways to attach and secure it to the building structure. This includes outlet boxes designed with straps, or making sure the box has been fastened to wood blocking.

If at any time you’re unsure about whether or not your outlet box can support a ceiling fan, or have trouble determining if it can, just give us a call at 605-721-1193!