retrofitting a ceiling fan control

Hi, When my house was built, I had 3 Emerson ceiling fans installed in various rooms ranging from 13 to 17 ft ceiling. Having to make too many decisions to a shorttime, I forgot to choose/ask for fans with speed control on wall or remote controls. The wall switch only controls on-off.
They all have a pull-chain; not sure if they are for light kit or speed control, never tried it.
Will those Hunter/Leviton fan speed controls works by replacing the on-off switch? If they do, how does this speed control impact the speed control by the pull chain (if it was indeed used as such)?
I have heard from various people that I need to get to the top of the fan in order to install speed control/remote control, I am not about to put up scaffolding in order to do that.
Thanks!
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HY wrote:

The fans I've seen all work with a wall speed control. If the fan has a speed setting, you leave the fan switch on high, then use the wall switch.
The only speed controls that require access to the top of the fan are the remote control variety. IMO, they are the way to go for new installs, because you don't need to run wire to a wall switch at all. All you need to do is find a hot and run it to the fan, which is usually pretty easy. For your case, just buy a wall speed control switch.
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Unless you're looking for the "remote" control like Trader mentioned, You can just replace the wall switch with a fan speed control. Lutron makes several called "fandial" which work very well.

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If your fans are a lights / fan combo and you want to control both the fan speed and the dim the lights you have two options.
First, you can replace the toggle switch on the wall with an appropriate controller, however you need to have the right kind of wire running to the fans from the switch to do this. Normally, there is 14 /2 wiring; you will need to replace with 12 /3. This is not an attractive solution because you will dig up your wall and ceiling to pull new wire.
Second, you can install a remote control module in the fan's ceiling hood without replacing any wires in your wall or by replacing the switch. The fan will be turned off and on at the switch, controlling fan speed / light dimming with a remote.
You don't need to get an elaborate scaffolding to get to the fans. You can probably rent an A frame ladder from a local tool rental outfit for an afternoon. They will probably drop it at your door and pick it up. I've rented 18' A frame ladders for 4 hours for $23 + delivery.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

And exactly why is he supposed to have 12 gauge wire? I can see why he would need 3 conductors if he has a light that he wants to control too, but certainly 14 gauge is fine for a fan/light and meets all code.

If you do it this way, typically the wall switch is no longer used at all, because the remote can do that too. Not much sense in having another switch to worry about someone turning off.

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Frequency Interference). Also why would you need 12 AWG (20 amps)? This for a fan, or even two or three fans on same circuit, along with a few lights. Ceiling fans takes only a few watts, each fan prob. no more than a single light bulb. Not talking about two or three horsepower motors in reference to typical ceiling, bathroom exhaust an range hoods etc.!
BTW; thank goodness I can fix anything in/on my ceilings with a chair/short step ladder! Outside can paint the whole house with no more than a step ladder and even the gable ends with a short one arm carried ladder etc. A regulation 8 foot ceiling etc. is energy conserving and helps a house 'keep its head down' during heavy wind and snow storms.
Question: What is the groups opinion of those "Little Giant' ladders (160 ladders in one????) as widely advertised on TV.
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On 20 Mar 2006 09:37:12 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Why not replace it with 14/3? 14 has been good enough so far, and all that is being run off of it is one motor and one or 3 lights. (and for that matter, now you will split the current and no new wire except the neutral will run even as much as the 14/2 did.)
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