Advice requested for the repair of 3 of 4 ceiling fans (perhaps remote controlled?)

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I have three inoperative ceiling fans that I just don't understand. http://www.flickr.com/photos/98287134@N02/9210688634/lightbox/
When I bought the house (foreclosure), there was only 1 remote control which operated only one of the four ceiling fans.
That operating ceiling fan has a wall switch, and a pull switch, and a remote control. The pull switch just changes the speed while the wall switch and remote control appear to work in series.
But, I don't have *any* remotes for the three inoperative ceiling fans. Worse yet, one (the one pictured), is a good 25 feet in the air, with the top of the stairs just out of reach by leaning over the railing - but enough to pull the pull cord.
In *all* the inoperative fans, I have pulled the pull cord multiple times and operated all potential wall switches, none of which operate the fans.
I have never worked on a remote-controlled fan before. QUESTION 1: How can I tell *if* the fans are indeed remote controlled? QUESTION 2: How can I debug why 3 of 4 won't ever turn on?
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Danny D. wrote:

Maybe they are in remote mode? Remote is programmable? Time to call maker of the fan/remote for support. There ought to be universal type remote around.
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On Sat, 27 Jul 2013 20:56:56 -0600, Tony Hwang wrote:

Exactly what I was thinking, simply because none of the wall switches operate 3 of the four fans.
It could be as simple as their batteries are dead (if the remote transceiver inside the fan housing even has a battery).
Or, it could be that the three fans were turned off via the remote and then the remote was lost.

That's what I was hoping to find out.
Here's a picture of the one working fan:
http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2881/9393040692_36ba734fc0_o.gif
The one remote that works with that one working fan is this white Emerson RF unit on the right, next to three other remotes that came with the house - but which don't do anything that I know of.
http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3806/9390285779_e29ff2c342_b.jpg
The two gray 3-button "Clicker" brand remotes look like RF garage door openers to me; and the one tan "Aloha Breeze" looks like it might be one of the fan remotes; but it doesn't operate any fan.
Yes, I put batteries in all of them. I'm not sure how to test if a remote is working though, other than to aim the infrared remotes directly at a camera and press a button.
This proves the infrared light is working on the "Aloha Breeze" above, because I can *see* the infrared light up in the cellphone camera as I press the buttons (presumably because a cellphone camera is more sensitive to infrared than human eyes are).
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On 7/27/2013 6:01 PM, Danny D. wrote:

make a remote kit for it called Adapt Touch (W-52). Each fan can be set with a different code, so you have to access the receiver in the fan canopy to see it's setting, then match it to the setting on the transmitter. Not an easy task as you have to drop the fan and the canopy to get to the specially designed receiver module.
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On 7/27/2013 11:36 PM, RBM wrote:

On the ones I have, you turn the cover a few degrees and it comes down the pipe. The receiver is located in the bracket that holds top of the pipe.
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On 7/28/2013 8:11 AM, Art Todesco wrote:

Casablanca makes a canopy cover like no others. It's a two piece cover. One piece is 3/4 ths of the cover, which is screwed to the mounting plate using 3-3" machine screws, which go straight up from the bottom. This leaves a quarter section open, which is where you insert the ball hanger of the fan. Once the fan is hanging on the 3/4 part of the canopy, you install the 1/4 section of the canopy with another 3" machine screw to close it up. The receiver kit made for these, (W-52) actually has holes through it, so the canopy mounting screws go through the receiver. The thing I'm not sure of, is the location of the code switches. It is possible that they are accessible by removing just the quarter section of the canopy, but I wouldn't count on it.
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On Sun, 28 Jul 2013 08:11:16 -0400, Art Todesco wrote:

Is the "canopy cover" the small cap attached to the ceiling or the larger housing attached to the fan blades?
http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2881/9393040692_36ba734fc0_o.gif
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 07:31:18 -0700, Oren wrote:

Thanks Oren, that diagram was very helpful as I have never worked on fans before.
I will remove one of the canopies of the easier fans.
1. For the one working fan, I'll determine how the remote, pull switch and wall switch interact (so I know how to debug the others).
2. For the fan on the extremely high ceiling, I'll hope to try all the combinations of the DIP switch inside the one Emerson remote that works the similarly looking fan (#1 above).
Surprisingly, since this fan is located in a foyer which has four side entrances, the number of unknown wall switches is astounding. There are roughly a dozen wall switches in that foyer, scattered about, only about 3/4 of which I have identified what they do (most turn on lights and some turn on outlets - but a few don't do anything that I know of).
They should make it mandatory that houses come with wiring diagrams!
3. For the other two fans, both of which are different, I can drop the canopy and see if there's a remote inside.
Does anyone know if these remotes inside the canopy need batteries? (it might be *that* simple?)
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 12:14:03 -0700, Oren wrote:

Hi Oren, That's what I'll do, but, it's actually harder to do than you may think.
The reason is that there isn't a single switch in the house (except in the garage) that is your typical on/off switch.
They're all unmarked paddle switches. Entire arrays of them. Worse yet, since the house is a wide-open design with many entrances in the main foyer, there are a plethora of 3-way switches.
So, the hunt-and-peck approach, which I am forced to do, won't be so easy as just flipping a switch. :)
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 12:14:03 -0700, Oren wrote:

Thanks. Makes sense. I'm just trying to figure out *why* three of four don't work.
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 16:41:04 -0700, Oren wrote:

Agreed.
Assuming the one working fan is similar to the non-working foyer fan, I'll figure out how that one working fan works (without taking it down because it too is high up in the air).
Once I get the hang of how the pull cord and light switch affect the remote control operation, I'll try to see if I can "trick" the tall foyer fan into working.
Once I get that tall foyer fan working, I'll work on the two non-working fans. I'll probably tackle the one with the light first as I KNOW the wall switch enervates that light.
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 07:40:11 -0700, Oren wrote:

I see. Thanks. Two of my inoperative fans look heavy, so, the hanging of the motor on the hook under the canopy will be important.
The main fan to get working is the foyer fan, 25 feet up (or so).
So, I'll first determine how the similarly looking working fan works with the white Emerson remote, and, then, I'll try all the combinations of the 4-pin DIP switch to guess at the code.
Interestingly, the problem will be compounded by not knowing which of the dozen or so wall switches in the foyer actually operate the fan.
There is also a cryptic switch with LEDs mounted at the front door, which I will snap a photo of to ask if anyone recognizes what it is.
(It's hard to get photos off my phone and my camera busted.)
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 12:23:25 -0700, Oren wrote:

Unfortunately, of the 3 inoperative fans, only one has a light, and, that light works to (but the switch still doesn't operate the fan).
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 14:28:57 -0700, Oren wrote:

Will do and report back. But I will concentrate on the tall foyer fan first, as this is the critical fan to get working.
The hint that the universal Emerson remote control has that 4-place DIP switch is the key to running through the 16 frequencies, hoping one of them will enervate the fan without me having to take it apart.
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On 7/29/2013 8:27 AM, Danny D. wrote:

is. On this particular fan, just the canopy against the ceiling needs to be dropped to access any remote receiver.
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 18:50:55 -0400, RBM wrote:

Drat! If that's not a Casablanca, then this foyer fan, which is the critical fan, might not work the same way, nor with the same remote.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7410/9210688634_95387e15df_o.jpg
Right?
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On 7/29/2013 8:25 PM, Danny D. wrote:

call their technical help line and ask them if a universal transmitter will work with their W-52 receiver, but ultimately you will have to know how the dip switches are set
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On Mon, 29 Jul 2013 22:18:37 -0400, RBM wrote:

Thanks for the tip.
I'll call Casablanca tomorrow: http://www.casablancafanco.com 888-227-2178 They do have manuals here: http://www.casablancafanco.com/Support/Manuals-and-Parts-Guides/
But, the only manual that had W52 in the name was this one: http://www.casablancafanco.com/uploadedFiles/Casablanca/Support/Owners_Manuals/w52.pdf
I don't have any wall switches that look like that W52 unit though.
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On Sat, 27 Jul 2013 23:36:42 -0400, RBM wrote:

For the three fans in the ceiling, I don't mind dropping them to access the remote unit.
Is that master remote unit in the smaller cap part of the fan that is attached to the ceiling, or in the larger part of the fan housing that is closer to the fan blades?
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7410/9393218370_2568a83f47_o.gif
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