As a homeowner, you may be tempted to do your own ceiling fan installations. After all, it makes sense if you’ve already connected other types of wiring for your home. However, you’ll quickly find that the wires on a ceiling fan are slightly different from your standard wiring.
A blue wire on a fan controls the electrical current to the lighting fixture. Depending on what type of fan you have, yours may or may not contain one. However, it’s important if your fan does have one, to connect the wire because otherwise, you won’t be able to use your fan’s lights.
Luckily, we can help you learn how to get the job done without any issues. So, if you’d like to learn how to wire a ceiling fan and what each wire means, continue reading.
However, if you have never worked with electrical wiring, we suggest you contact an electrician for help.
What is the Blue Wire on a Ceiling Fan & What Do Other Wires Do?
Ceiling fans have a few different color wires, and each color of wire is specifically designed to send electrical currents to certain areas. Understanding what each wire does is key to being able to set up your ceiling fan correctly.
We’ve created a guide that can help explain what each color wire does:
The blue wire is what controls the electric current to your lighting kit. In a ceiling fan, the light fixture is located in the middle of the ceiling fan where the light bulbs are located. It’s essential to line up the blue wire to the right wire. Otherwise, it will not turn the light on. However, if your ceiling fan doesn’t have a light fixture, then you won’t have a blue wire.
On the other hand, the black wire is what powers the blades of the fan. It sends an electrical current and allows you to adjust the speed of the fans. When the wire isn’t connected, it will halt the use of the fan.
The last type of wire you’ll run into is the white wire. This type of wire is what completes the fan’s circuit. If you’re unsure of what a completed circuit is, then here’s a quick brief on what it does.
“A completed circuit is when an electrical current is completed by creating a loop. When this happens, electricity flows through the device, and it can be powered on.”
The white wire doesn’t control any specific part of the fan. However, it’s essential to connect it because it helps control the overall unit. Without the white wire, you’ll run into potential problems.
Do Ceiling Fans have a Ground Wire?
No, ceiling fans don’t usually have a ground wire. A ground wire is generally identified by either a copper or green wire. It’s responsible for protecting your fan from experiencing power surges.
Ceiling fans can operate without the use of a ground wire. However, a ground wire protects in case there is a surge. If you want to keep your ceiling fan safe, then a ground wire can be helpful.
Types of Ceiling Fans & Wiring
Before you go and start to wire your ceiling fan, you’ll need first to identify the type of fan you’re dealing with. There are two types of ceiling fans you can purchase, and each type will determine what cords are wired together. So, you must understand what kind of ceiling fan you’re dealing with before you start to do anything.
Here is a quick breakdown of the two different types of ceiling fan switches you’ll run into:
Wiring a Single Switch Ceiling Fan
- Head to your circuit breaker and cut off all the power to your ceiling fan.
- Take the ceiling fan and connect the blue wire to the black fan wire and the black ceiling wire.
- Next, connect your grounding wires if you choose to have one. The wires are generally either green, yellow, or copper colored.
- Lastly, take the white wire and connect them.
- Close and secure the ceiling fan before turning the circuit breaker back on.
- Once the power is on, test to see if the switch works. If it does, you’ve successfully set up a single switch ceiling fan.
Wiring a Dual Switch Ceiling Fan
- Go to your circuit breaker and shut off all power to your ceiling fan.
- Connect the black wire from the ceiling into the fan’s black wire.
- Next, connect the blue wire to the second live wire, either colored red or black.
- After that, connect the white ground wire from the ceiling and attach it to the white wire.
- Lastly, close the ceiling fan and turn back on the power to test it.
- If it works, then you’ve successfully set up a dual switch ceiling fan.
Wiring your ceiling fan isn’t too complicated as long as you understand the two basic types of ceiling fan switches. However, we always recommend that you contact an electrician if you’re unsure of what to do. Hopefully, we’ve helped you understand a bit more about what is the blue wire on a ceiling fan and what it does.