Examine the fan's pull chain switch. The fan will operate slowly if a switch fails or if a speed setting is absent. Turn off the fan and wait for it to cease moving. Pull the chain and turn the fan to the lowest speed setting, then pull the chain and travel through the progressive speed levels while listening to the fan motor. If it sounds like there's no problem with the fan belt or blade attachments, then it's likely just a loose chain that can be tightened by pulling it hard for a few seconds.
If this doesn't fix the problem, then it's time to replace the fan. Ceiling fans are easy to install yourself, but if you need help, most home improvement stores or online retailers will let you take your old fan down to their repair department before they ship out a new one. They'll usually charge around $75-100 for the service.
The best way to ensure that you're getting a proper speed setting on your fan is to first examine the manufacturer's instructions or data sheet for your model. If these instructions are missing or not available, then use our guide to determine the correct speed for your situation.
Once you know how fast you should be running your fan, measure the distance between its mounting holes and multiply this number by 0.8 (this gives you the width of its arc) - this will give you an idea of how much space it needs in order to spin completely.
Perhaps a resistor connected in series or a variac can be used to lessen the speed. The fan makes use of a shaded pole motor (the manufacturer calls it "Alveolate" and compares it to the standard shaded pole motor, pointing out that its motor is better). A starting capacitor is required for the "alveolate" motor. This should be an electrolytic type with no less than 10 microfarads capacitance.
The resistance needed for a variable speed fan depends on how much current the fan requires. Most fans will work best at full speed. Reducing the speed will cause the fan to run slower and faster until it reaches some other speed which is less than full speed. This is usually not a problem with desktop fans, but large industrial fans may need to be run at very slow speeds to prevent overheating.
Variable frequency drives (VFDs) are available for commercial applications where it is necessary to vary the speed of one or more appliances such as air conditioners, heat pumps, and ventilators. These devices can also control lights and other appliances using a built-in communication system. VFDs offer many advantages over traditional methods of controlling power tools and other equipment, including reduced noise and energy consumption.
Resistors can be used to adjust the speed of a fan. This is done by connecting the resistor in series with the fan itself. The higher the value of the resistor, the lower will be the speed of the fan.
Slowing the fan's speed is as simple as attaching a bulb or other resistive load in series between the power source and the fan. If the wattage of the connection load is raised in this technique, the fan speed is likewise increased. Slower speeds are more energy efficient.
This method can also be used to accelerate a fan when you need to create a breeze or if you are experiencing a heatwave and want to reduce the temperature faster. The key here is that you only connect the load for a short period of time - enough to slow down the fan but not so long that it affects how often it turns.
This is called "variable speed" operation and is available on many ceiling fans. Other types of fans may have this feature but not all of them do. To determine if your fan has this capability, look under the unit for settings like this: Variable Speed. This means that you can control the speed by adding or removing resistance from the circuit that powers it.
For example, if you put your hand up against the fan blade, it will stop spinning because there is no current flowing through it. Remove your hand and the fan will start up again at its previous speed. This type of fan is called "wall-mounted" because it hangs from the wall using screws or bolts. You can also find floor models which are designed to sit directly on the ground.
A ceiling fan ages by slowing down over time. The slowing may not be evident at first, but as the fan becomes increasingly sluggish, you will notice a change in the air circulation, or lack thereof. Slowing Down With Age A sluggish fan can be caused by one of three things: a problem with the bearings, an out-of-balance blade, or a defective capacitor. Ceiling fans are available with either metal or plastic blades; both types will wear out over time if not maintained properly. If a fan has not been cleaned for several months, it should be taken off the wall and washed thoroughly with a spray bottle filled with water and mild dishwashing liquid. Don't use soap—this will cause corrosion of the metal parts inside the motor.
Ceiling fans with wooden blades are attractive and low maintenance, but they do have their drawbacks. The main one is that wood tends to grow organisms such as mold and bacteria which can be transferred to people through the air. Also, wooden blades can become dry and aged looking over time.
Metal blades are the most durable option, but they are also the most expensive. Over time, metal parts inside the motor will wear out and need to be replaced. This is why it's important to maintain your fan, and remove any debris that may be blocking its blades.
Plastic blades are much less expensive than metal ones, but they aren't as durable. Over time, plastic parts can break easily, causing the fan to malfunction.