Is it hard to install a ceiling fan?

hello,
I'd like to install a ceiling fan in the bedroom. Are these hard to install?? The house was built in the 70's.
The fan would go into a existing ceiling light fixture, no attic access, it's on the 1st floor. The light box in the ceiling is metal, but I'm not sure how it is attached to the joists. The box is roundish and has 2 metal arms extending out. I saw the house being built back then but i don't remember if it's nailed or just tacked with metal type prongs. Any easy way to tell which way?
So, I'll assume I need one of those retro brace type things that go through existing ceiling holes. How would I get the old one out if its nailed in? How hard are the those braces to get in straight and level? Is the actual fan hard to install with just one person? Thanks
Jason
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If the box is solid and does not move , you have little to worry about.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I would say if the box is connected with conduit then your pretty safe there... if is just a box with some Romex (un-likely) running to it then you would have to secure the box to the joist somehow...
I had a similar installation on first floor no attic access... I connected the fan directly to the box but I also installed a safety cable just in case the bolts failed...

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

If the box is properly attached (most are in '70s homes) it is a fairly simple job. There will be instructions to follow and one person can do it in less than an hour.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I checked the light boxes in the basement, its unfinished, no sheetrock, just some insulation. The box arms are nailed to the joists, one nail per arm. Do you think that would suffice? Thx
Jason
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

That is typical and should work. In some older homes, the box was not supported across the joists, only nailed to one side making it easy to pull down.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

One nail? That doesn't sound too sturdy. Might be ok if your ceiling fan is small and lightweight. If it's a heavy fan, I'd put in a new box. Either a "ceiling fan box" with heavy-duty metal arms; or attach a box to a piece of 2x4 that you secure to the joists.
--
Jedd Haas - Artist
http://www.gallerytungsten.com
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Ever check out the rating for one nail?
In the case of the OP, a new box is not an option. Not that he box would make any difference since it is the attachment that is of concern.
Even an 8d nail is 9/32" diameter. Try to bend one. The put one in a joist laterally and hang your ass from it. Don't worry, you won't fall.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
You will have to remove the old box and support as it is not approved for ceiling fans. Start by disconnecting the wires and identifying them. loosen the wire clamp or connector. Remove the center screw that holds the box to the support brace and carefully pull the box down while removing the wire from the box.
The difficult part is removing the old box support brace. You will need to cut it using a sawzall or Dremel tool or a hacksaw blade. It will vibrate a lot using a saw so hold it steady or you may damage the drywall ceiling. Once the brace is cut, you must reach inside the hole and bend each end back and forth and try to pull out the nails that hold it in place.
Once the old box and support has been removed you are free to install a new fan brace and fan rated box such as a Raco #934 or #935 or some other brand. The new braces are relatively easy to install. The ends of the brace are made in such a way that they will position the box at the correct height as they rest on top of the drywall ceiling. Just line the brace up with the center of the hole and tighten it according to the manufacturers instructions. Install the box following the instructions also.
The fan manufacturer usually furnishes installation instructions and many have simplified the process by the addition of a hook to hold the fan motor while you splice the wires together.
John Grabowski http://www.mrelectrician.tv

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Are there any holes in the box near the Joist? If so, just screw in some 1 1/2 deck screws and you will be able to do pull-ups on that fan.
On Tue, 03 Aug 2004 15:20:05 GMT, "John Grabowski"

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Gene Casey wrote:

Exactly!!! (remainder of the message nort directed at you)
Contrary to the Codeoholics who *insist* that it be a "fan compliant box", the idea is to SAFELY HOLD UP THE FRIGGIN' FAN, not to be code compliant.
Really, Codebots: Give it a break. Yeah, you got the NEC on CDRom for Christmas, good for you. Now run along and scare the shit out of somebody in your neighborhood instead of here.
--
Saluting America's #1 (animated) "MILF" - Lois Griffin!
--------------------------------------------------------
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Tom, Thank you for so eloquently stating the most important fact; Safely holding up the fan.
As a licensed electrical contractor I have a legal obligation to do ALL of my electrical work according to the laws in the state of New Jersey. The building inspectors in NJ are considered law enforcement officials who have police radios in their cars. Consequently I cannot advise someone to do work that is illegal or hazardous. NJ currently has the 2002 National Electrical Code in effect with a few amendments as well as fire codes, building codes, mechanical codes, and plumbing codes. These codes were developed perhaps over one hundred years ago and continue to evolve for the purpose of saving human life and protecting property. Those who choose to ignore safety do so with risk to themselves and other human beings. I personally do not want to be responsible for injury or death to someone. Do you?
Those of you that have performed your own non code compliant uninspected electrical work that resulted in a fire already know the consequences.
Unfortunately it is human nature to be self reliant. We all feel that we can take care of ourselves, but that is not always the case. The reality is that we all don't know everything, but each of us has unique life experience from all the things that we have been exposed to. I began my career as an electrician at a very early age when my father, who was also an electrical contractor, would take me to work with him on Saturdays to give my mother time for housework and my baby sister. As I got older I worked for him during the summers that I was off from school. I am middle aged now and am still learning new techniques for electrical installations. Are you so sure that reading a how-to book and looking up information on the internet will make you an expert in a craft? Do you think that I could read a book about your job and do it as well as you without training and hands-on experience?
John Grabowski http://www.mrelectrician.tv

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Grabowski wrote:

All well and good. The people you work for are paying you to do that. People asking for advice on this newsgroup are not.

But you have no problems moonlighting and advising homeowners to do more than they need, to waste time and/or money to fix something that isn't broken?
Hint: "Saying nothing" is an option here on Usenet.

So, you are somehow required to point out every possible code violation that you see in life?

Yeah, I'm The Devil, that's my job. (stupid question/answer)

There's that "scare-the-shit-out-of-'em" attitude again. FIRE! FIRE! FIRE! Not because the guy's box isn't safe, but because it's not code approved.

Some people know that a properly mounted octagon box capable of supporting a working ceiling fan is a properly mounted octagon box capable of supporting a working ceiling fan, be it "Fan Rated per NEC" or not.
Those of us who do don't have the need to scream FIRE! and waste time and money fixing a non-existent problem.
--
Saluting America's #1 (animated) "MILF" - Lois Griffin!
--------------------------------------------------------
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I found it easy to install a ceiling fan. I had to get into the attic to install a 2x4 cross brace for support--that was fairly easy. Installing a new switch to the wall was the tough part (drilling and feeding wire through the hole, installing a larger electrical box.) There are wireless controls that make the install easier, but I think the wall switch has a clean look with one less battery-operated cordless gadget.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Phisherman wrote:

I've done it both ways, going for the wireless-battery-box- fake-switch setup when it would be a nightmare job of relocating a switch. Either way has its advantages, but we are becoming slaves to convenience (most of which use batteries, unfortunately <g>)
--
Saluting America's #1 (animated) "MILF" - Lois Griffin!
--------------------------------------------------------
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I assume that the people asking questions here are looking for good solid answers. Some things that are asked here I have had experience with and can relay that to a novice who may lack experience with tools and materials.
An improper electrical installation may not manifest itself for several years such as an improperly installed ceiling fan that suddenly falls down after operating fine for a long time (I've seen it). Sure, you can go and unknowingly wire a new bedroom with lamp cord in the walls (I've seen that too), but your insurance company will not pay for any property damage as a result.
When I answer a question, I try to take into consideration the person at the other end doing the work. Often it is difficult to judge their degree of mechanical aptitude and experience from the few sentences posted. I spend a lot of time with people every day and get a general sense of their understanding of home wiring and codes. I wouldn't expect someone who is attracted to a cartoon character to have a deep understanding of real human beings.
John Grabowski http://www.mrelectrician.tv

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Grabowski wrote:

Funny thing, you Codebots have seen it *all*, huh?

FIRE! FIRE! FIR! Do you ever stop and actually LISTEN to what people are trying to say to you? No, keep throwing up straw men that are exaggerated examples of the point you are trying to make. Nobody ever mentioned wiring rooms with lamp cord in the walls. That's unsafe. I know that, you know that. Next assinine example?
You're dogging the issue, totally. The issue is a properly mounted box that will safely hold a ceiling fan. In you mind, it couldn't possibly be true unless the box has a "fan approved" bug on it. Yeah, I know...FIRE! FIRE! ...

I wouldn't expect somebody with such an incredibly closed mind to have a sense of humor.

--
Saluting America's #1 (animated) "MILF" - Lois Griffin!
--------------------------------------------------------
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

No, the box is not near a joist, between them. Deck screws are not that strong in shear anyway. They break off surprisingly easy in shear. thx
Jason
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dude.......... Only YOU will know if it's hard, no matter if you are installing a ceiling fan, or screwing your old lady. To tell if it's hard, stick your hand in your underpants and scream real loud if you feel a hard prick. If not, call your mommy and bitch at her about it. Oh, and just so you know. If you got over 6", you're a man. If less, you are still a boy, or else you are deformed.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.