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Old 06-28-2014, 04:20 PM   #1
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How to improve shielding on ceiling fan?


Greetings,
I had an electrician install a couple of ceiling fans with a wireless wall-mounted remotes in my house that have 3 fan speeds, plus a dimmable light control. The remote receivers are not built-into the fan, they are after-market receivers mounted in the ceiling box above the fan. The remotes have been very finnicky from day 1 to the point that I'm totally fed up with them. Sometimes they work, sometimes intermittently, and sometimes not at all. I think I've narrowed the problem down to interference caused by noise generated by the electrical components in the fans, specifically the main pull-chain switches that control the lights and/or fan motors. The symptoms are:

Fan 1: I can turn the fan and lights on with the remote, but once the lights are on, the remote stops functioning or functions intermittently. Manually turning off the light at the pull-chain usually makes the remote work again.

Fan 2: Same as above but I've also noticed that sometimes if the light is on and the remote is not functioning, if I use the pull-chain to turn the lights off and then on again, the remote will work again for a short period of time. This is what leads me to believe there is some noise being generated by the pull-chain light switch in the fan.

So, my question is -- is there a way for me to improve the shielding of either the pull-chain switches themselves, or the entire fan.
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Old 06-28-2014, 04:36 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by minorgod View Post
Greetings,
I had an electrician install a couple of ceiling fans with a wireless wall-mounted remotes in my house that have 3 fan speeds, plus a dimmable light control. The remote receivers are not built-into the fan, they are after-market receivers mounted in the ceiling box above the fan. The remotes have been very finnicky from day 1 to the point that I'm totally fed up with them. Sometimes they work, sometimes intermittently, and sometimes not at all. I think I've narrowed the problem down to interference caused by noise generated by the electrical components in the fans, specifically the main pull-chain switches that control the lights and/or fan motors. The symptoms are:

Fan 1: I can turn the fan and lights on with the remote, but once the lights are on, the remote stops functioning or functions intermittently. Manually turning off the light at the pull-chain usually makes the remote work again.

Fan 2: Same as above but I've also noticed that sometimes if the light is on and the remote is not functioning, if I use the pull-chain to turn the lights off and then on again, the remote will work again for a short period of time. This is what leads me to believe there is some noise being generated by the pull-chain light switch in the fan.

So, my question is -- is there a way for me to improve the shielding of either the pull-chain switches themselves, or the entire fan.

You would think these things are supposed to make your life easier.

You would think.

Electrically, most people here would install 2 switches, one for fan one for light.
I have heard of rear cases where the remote fan/light combo controls have worked, I actually only know of one first hand.(maybe 2 but that one was was just a fan, and now that I think of it the fan / light that I was thinking about, the person aims and click,click, clicks many times. it will work but argh.)
The rest are finicky as you say.

You might call the manufacturer for suggestions or maybe some googling.

Good luck with it.
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Old 06-28-2014, 04:46 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ritelec View Post
You would think these things are supposed to make your life easier.

You would think....

Yeah, I'm pretty disgusted with the state of wireless fan controllers. They either don't have the features you want in a single controller, or they don't work. I can't use wired controllers w/o punching many holes in my walls and having an electrician run wires. There was already power in the places I needed it for the fans, but no easy way to run additional wires for the remotes so I went with the only wall-mounted wireless remotes that look nice in the wall and were supposed to work with any dimmable lights including dimmable LED lights. Then I bought a bunch of dimmable LED bulbs and discovered they do NOT in any way work properly with dimmable LEDs. I thought the cheap LED lights were causing the interference at first (and they do create a lot of interference), but switching back to regular incandescents only marginally improved the performance of the remotes. This is such basic stuff I really can't believe no one can make a decent wireless remote. I mean, there should be killer remotes with wifi connectivity in them that let me control things from either a wall-mounted RF wireless switch or my smartphone, but they just don't exist. I can get a DECT6 phone that I can walk down the street with and talk for 12 straight hours on w/o charging, but I can't get a damned wireless fan switch that can dim the lights and control the fan speed. Sigh.

Anyway, since what I want doesn't seem to exist, what I'm looking for now is some guidance on how to electrically shield those pull chain switches and other internal fan components w/o electrocuting myself or burning my house down. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-28-2014, 07:14 PM   #4
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My guess would be maybe the batteries are weak. Unless you are referring to the wireless switches and not remotes
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Old 06-28-2014, 07:27 PM   #5
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My guess would be maybe the batteries are weak. Unless you are referring to the wireless switches and not remotes
Nope, not the batteries. I've already made sure they are good, both by checking them with a voltage meter and replacing them with fresh batteries. It's definitely an interference prob. The remotes (usually) work when the fan lights are off, and not when they are on.
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Old 06-29-2014, 08:18 AM   #6
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Experiment with different frequencies on the remote and receiver.
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