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Old 04-02-2012, 05:53 PM   #1
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Hello. I'm in an apartment and it's getting warm out so I've decided to look into installing a ceiling fan. I've installed several ceiling fans in other apartments, but this one uses a 3.5" round plastic light fixture box in the ceiling. I'd like to use a 4" metal box for the fan though. I cannot see any mounting screws in the box, so I'm guessing it's on the outside of the box. There is a floor above me so I don't have attic-type access. Please look at the pics if they might help. What are my options?






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Old 04-02-2012, 06:12 PM   #2
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Your only option is to call the landlord or rental agency. Altering someone else's property is illegal.


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Old 04-02-2012, 06:18 PM   #3
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


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Your only option is to call the landlord or rental agency. Altering someone else's property is illegal.
I've already talked to them. They said we were allowed to install ceiling fans in the master bedroom (which this is). I don't know if different units have different ceiling boxes.
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Old 04-02-2012, 06:22 PM   #4
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


If they are telling people they can hang ceiling fans from those boxes, its only a matter of time till they get their tail sued.

That box is not fan rated. With the movement of the fan, its only a matter of time till it falls out of the ceiling.

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Old 04-02-2012, 06:28 PM   #5
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Now that the legality is out of the way.
Go here:http://www.diyadvice.com/diy/electri...iling-fan-box/
Tells you step by step and what type of box to use.
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Old 04-02-2012, 06:44 PM   #6
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


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Now that the legality is out of the way.
Go here:http://www.diyadvice.com/diy/electri...iling-fan-box/
Tells you step by step and what type of box to use.
Why send them to another site?

The question was answered that you can not use that box to hang a fan.
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Old 04-02-2012, 06:51 PM   #7
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Really?
The question was actually " what are my options" so I gave him an option via the link so I didn't have to type it all.
Thanks for your helpful input though!
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:00 PM   #8
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


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Originally Posted by sublime2 View Post
Really?
The question was actually " what are my options" so I gave him an option via the link so I didn't have to type it all.
Thanks for your helpful input though!
No problem!

Do you really want to tell someone living in an apartment how to change out a ceiling box to hang a fan?
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:15 PM   #9
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


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Do you really want to tell someone living in an apartment how to change out a ceiling box to hang a fan?
I dunno. He seems WAY MORE qualified than other guys who don't even know why one wire is black and the other is white (and do not want to learn), but kind souls have spent a dozen pages giving them step-by-step on how to install vent fans and rewire switches and recessed lights ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
Hello. I'm in an apartment and it's getting warm out so I've decided to look into installing a ceiling fan. I've installed several ceiling fans in other apartments, but this one uses a 3.5" round plastic light fixture box in the ceiling.

I'd like to use a 4" metal box for the fan though. I cannot see any mounting screws in the box, so I'm guessing it's on the outside of the box.

There is a floor above me so I don't have attic-type access. Please look at the pics if they might help. What are my options?

He has an understanding of the problem, knows he needs a metal box, and apparently has the landlord's permission.

It may be beyond what he wants to do (or is capable of doing), but it seems like he "gets it."

Last edited by M3 Pete; 04-02-2012 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:18 PM   #10
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


[QUOTE=M3 Pete;890613]I dunno. He seems WAY MORE qualified than other guys who don't even know why one wire is black and the other is white (and does not want to learn), but kind souls have spent a dozen pages giving them step-by-step on how to install vent fans and rewire switches and recessed lights ...
QUOTE]

So true!
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:19 PM   #11
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


What he ultimately decides to do is up to him.
Based on the fact he has stated that he has changed them a few times indicates he has some knowledge of what he's doing.
I just offered an option of how to succeed in changing the fixture.
Isn't that what this form is all about.
Helping people succeed at what they are trying to accomplish.
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Old 04-02-2012, 11:41 PM   #12
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Wow, lots of activity. That link to the DIYadvice.com site doesn't work for me, only the first page loads.

I know the plastic box won't work, that's why I mentioned the 4" metal box. I need to remove the plastic box, but I don't see any mounting hardware from below. So, how do I get the 4" box in there? Do I need to cut a 1/2" larger diameter hole in the ceiling drywall and then find out how to pry the old box out in order to mount the new box? Electric off on that circuit of course
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Old 04-03-2012, 12:01 AM   #13
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Maybe that box is like the one below? It would explain why you don't see any screws/ mails.
Which might be why the LL said you can change it.He already knows what type of box is up there.

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Old 04-03-2012, 01:29 AM   #14
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


sublime,
If you look carefully there appear to be two, easy to miss, mounting screws in the back of that box. I'm guessing that it's more likely to be:


Superorb,
I'd recommend taking a stud finder and seeing if you can find a stud right next to the box. That'll give you a better idea of what you're dealing with.

If you're dealing with a box like the one above, you can probably cut it up with a oscillating tool, and pull out the pieces without damaging the drywall. Then you could use an old work fan box to mount the fan.
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Old 04-03-2012, 01:05 PM   #15
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Installing a ceiling fan with existing 3.5" light fixture box?


Thanks guys. Since it's a 3.5" box it's too small for a fan bracket. The holes do not line up with two fan brackets from different brands that I've tried. I'm convinced it's a light-fixture-only box. If it were a 4" plastic box I'd still want to verify mounting, but I'd probably replace it with a metal box anyways. It hangs over our bed and I do not want that thing falling on us while we're sleeping.

I'll take a stud finder to the immediate area to try and find some studs.

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