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Old 04-28-2015, 08:53 AM   #1
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Ceiling Fan Heating Up - Possible Wiring Issue?


So about a month ago my wife and I put in a new ceiling fan in one of our bedrooms. After running for a bit a foul odor would come from the room. After checking the motor housing felt quite hot, so we took it back assuming it was defective and put in another. This one did the same thing, these were discontinued and very inexpensive big box branded fans, so we assumed nothing of it.

A couple days ago we purchased a nicer hunter fan and installed it. Sadly, the same thing occurred. I had my father come check things out and he found a flaw in how it was wired up originally. The box was rewired to be "Correct" but the fan is still hot. I did some looking on the internet and found 1 very slight variation to how it is wired currently and I'm wondering if any experts think this could be the still cause of the problem.

How the box is wired:

There are 4 pairs+ground of wire coming into the box. 1 pair is hot when the circuit is on the other 3 have no juice. 2 pairs should be going to outlets in the room and one pair was validated to be going to the switch. What he wired up was all black wires together. The 3 white wires not coming from the switch pair are wired together + a jumper that goes into the fan neutral. The white (which had black tape added now) from the switch pair is now going into the hot wires from the ceiling fan.

Now I've found a few diagrams on the internet that show the switched wires being hooked up in the opposite manner: white with black tape would be hooked to all the black wires excluding the switches black while black from the switch is hooked to the hot wires coming from the fan.

Is this causing the motor to heat up excessively and do I need to correct the order of White+black and black wiring? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. If this is unclear, let me know what you need clarified.

Thanks.
Bill
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Old 04-28-2015, 09:42 AM   #2
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I wire a ceiling fan with the fan neutral to the house neutrals . The light kit wire to the switch leg . The fan wire to the hot or hots .

Light switch turns on the light .

Pull chain on the fan turns the fan off & on & selects the speed .

Always take a photo of an electrical box , when you remove the cover , light fixture . If you do not know what you are doing , leave stuff alone .

It used to be SOP to connect the white in the Romex going to a switch , to the hot . Tape it a different color for identification . The black / switch leg in the Romex was connected to the brass colored screw of the keyless light fixture . Or the black wire of the light fixture .

Best I remember , this has changed .

As to why you fan is getting hot , I have no way of telling , long distance .

God bless
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Old 04-28-2015, 09:59 AM   #3
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Your switch loop is miswired. The re-marked white should take power down to the switch.

However, this has nothing to due with your issue. Are you using a dimmer as the switch?
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Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
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Old 04-28-2015, 10:08 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
Your switch loop is miswired. The re-marked white should take power down to the switch.

However, this has nothing to due with your issue. Are you using a dimmer as the switch?
Thank you for your response, no there is no dimmer on the switch, it is a simple flat toggle switch - on or off.
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Old 04-28-2015, 01:52 PM   #5
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Aside from correcting the obvious, which Jim says shouldn't be the cause of the heat, is there something else that I can be checking to try and determine why only this fixture seems to be causing excess heat on the fan motor unit? I let the light run for a while and it did not generate almost any heat (and all LED bulbs so there is only a little heat coming from the bulbs) so it only seems to be heating up when the fan is engaged - this was the same with the previous fans that we put in. This circuit has never tripped since I've lived in the house, this remains true after installing the new fan units.

I also didn't mention before that there seems to be no damage to the insulation on the wires in the box, so it doesn't seem like they're heating up excessively.

Apologies for making this a separate post from my previous reply, I couldn't find an edit button anywhere to just modify the previous one.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-28-2015, 02:35 PM   #6
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The only thing I can think of is that you put the fan in series with another load, so that the voltage at the fan is lower, which would make the motor run hot.

The way you've described the wiring doesn't seem to make that the case, but at this point I'm thinking of the possibilities.

How's the fan speed? Does it seem "normal" for a ceiling fan on high/medium/low, or is it very slow?
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Old 04-28-2015, 02:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flasherz View Post
The only thing I can think of is that you put the fan in series with another load, so that the voltage at the fan is lower, which would make the motor run hot.

The way you've described the wiring doesn't seem to make that the case, but at this point I'm thinking of the possibilities.

How's the fan speed? Does it seem "normal" for a ceiling fan on high/medium/low, or is it very slow?
Thank you for the response.

Yes, I feel like, compared to all the other fans in the home, this one doesn't lag behind it appears to have the same speeds. When starting it up, it spins up quickly.

As for being in series with another load I'm not entirely sure how to evaluate this because I'm not certain what to consider "in series" or "load". I can tell you that on this same circuit there are a couple computers and associated hardware (which I'm pretty sure are wired out of the same wiring from this box) and a couple alarm clocks (which I'm not sure if they are wired from the same junction box, they're in the other room).

Any other feedback will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:47 AM   #8
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How hot is hot when you touch the motor? Can you hold your hand on it or does it cause burns when you touch it?
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