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Balance a ceiling fan.

If your ceiling fan wobbles and makes more racket than an unbalanced washing machine load, read on--we've got the fix for you. Ceiling fan wobble is caused by imbalances in the fan blades or blade holders, misalignment of blades, excess dust accumulation or just loose blade holder mounting screws. Restore your fan to its smooth-running days of old before you wear down the moving parts.

First, make sure all the blades are tightly screwed into the blade holder, and the blade holder is firmly screwed into the fan flywheel. Remove any dust of buildup from the fan blades with a household cleaner. Run the fan to check the wobble and to dry the fan blades. If the wobble persists, one of the blades may be out of alignment.

Check blade alignment with a yardstick by measuring the distance from the edge of any blade to the ceiling (Photo 1), and make a note of the distance. Measure all the other blades in exactly the same manner. If any blade is out of alignment, gently bend the blade holder up or down until the blade is in line with the others.

Turn the fan on to see if it spins smoothly. If it still wobbles, pick up a blade balancing kit ($1.50) from a hardware store or home center. The balancing clip will balance the fan blades, eliminating the wobble.

Photo 2 shows how to attach the balancing clip and pinpoint the wobble. Once you've found the best location for the clip, install a balancing weight on the blade as shown in Photo 3. Add more weight if needed to get a smooth-running fan.

1 MEASURE the distance from the ceiling to the edge of a blade with a yardstick (most blades are angled, so be sure to measure on the same side of all the blades). Hold the yardstick still and rotate the blades around to measure the other blades.

2 SLIDE the balancing clip on the trailing edge of any blade, halfway between the holder and tip. Run the fan to check the wobble. Repeat with each blade, noting which one most reduced the wobble, then slide the clip in small increments away from the center of the blade. Move the clip, operate the fan, then move it again until you eliminate as much wobble as possible.

3 PEEL OFF the backing and stick the adhesive-backed balancing weight on the top center of the blade directly in line with the balancing clip.

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Copyright 2002 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:You can fix it
Author:Larson, Rocky
Publication:The Family Handyman
Date:Mar 1, 2002
Words:414
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