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This New House: Not a Fan of Ceiling Fans

Here’s the latest This New House installment from Rick

Growing up, I lived in a ceiling fan-free household and was always kind of fascinated by them when I would see them at friend’s houses. I was always afraid of the fan crashing down or somehow my head getting up high enough where I would accidentally make contact with the blades of the fan. It was an irrational fear as a kid, but I managed to avoid having ceiling fans until we bought our house this year.

Our new home came equipped with three ceiling fans, one in the family room, one in the baby’s room and one in our bedroom.  Immediately some of those fears came back to the pit of my stomach. What if the fan crashed down on us while we were sleeping? What if I forgot about the fan while playing with our son?  I wanted the fans gone, but on the laundry list of things to be done, it was a pretty low priority. Initially.

A few weeks ago, my wife was working on a Saturday so I was having a lazy day around the house with my son. We were in the main bedroom and it was a hot day so I turned on the fan and very quickly there was a rotten smell in the bedroom. At first I didn’t know where it was coming from, but when my wife got home we determined it was coming from the ceiling fan. Suddenly replacing the ceiling fan in our bedroom was at the top of our to-do list.

My father-in-law is a master of all trades, so he was kind enough to come over to help replace the ceiling fan with a regular light unit. While working on the ceiling fan, we had to figure out what circuit breaker it was linked to, so we ran the fan for the first time since it gave off the foul odor. Immediately the odor returned and now smoke started to come out from the fan. It turns out the motor had gone bad!

Thankfully, we were able to avoid a fire. Even though the smell from the fan was disgusting, I’m very glad that it provided the warning for us. The idea of absent-mindedly leaving the fan running and not being in the house when the fan started smoking is one I don’t want to think about. So, needless to say, we immediately replaced the fan in my son’s room with a light fixture and will also do the same thing for the fan in the family room.


What are your thoughts on ceiling fans? Have you ever had a close call with something in your house? Let us know in the comments!

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