How To Separate Light And Fan Switches: Steps And Tips
A single switch for two gears working for different purposes does not fit the energy-efficient criteria. By simply having independent switches for your light and fan, you will save on electricity.
Here, you will learn how to separate light and fan switches.
Why Have Dual Switches For Your Fan-Light Combo?
The fan-light combo is a popular choice not just for its style but also for its functionality. It does not take up too much space. However, the downside is that it is frequently installed with a single switch. It means you cannot independently control each component.
It’s not all the time that you need to use both fan and light; hence you end up consuming more energy than necessary.
If you have realized the drawback of this single switch early on, you may have requested a technician to separate the wires and install a dual switch for the combo. However, if it just dawned on you recently, it is never too late.
You can do this job with a little technical know-how and the right tools.
It is common to have ceiling fans with light components. Here, we discuss the steps to have a ceiling fan with separate light and fan switch. Note: this procedure works on a specific setup (panel/power > switch box > fan-light).
- Turn off the power source of your light and fan.
- Take out the switch from the wall box. Replace it with a bigger box that can house two switches.
- Make sure again that the power is off for your safety.
- Remove the lens and the light bulb from the unit.
- Remove the wires and identify which ones connect to the fan.
- If your unit has two wires (plus ground) going from the switch to the fan, you can do the following:
- For a unit with individual wires, run another one through the tube from the switch to the fan.
- If you have a /2 cable, replace it with a /3 cable (black – switched hot 1; red – switched hot 2; white – neutral; and ground).
- Wire nut the black wires with two short black wires. Then attach each of these black wires to the hot switch.
- Connect each switched hot wire to the hot screw of your switch.
- Connect the neutral wires with a wire nut.
- In the fan-light junction box, connect each switched hot to one of the hot wires on the fan-light.
- In the same junction box, wire nut the white wire from the switch box to the separate white wires for the fan and light.
- At this stage, all wires from the switch box and fan-light should be connected together with a wire nut.
- Switch on your power source and check if the switches work well. If not, you can check the wires again.
If you have a different setup, you will need a different procedure on how to wire ceiling fan and light separately. Make sure you observe safety precautions when handling electrical stuff.
How to separate light and fan switches is quite tricky, especially if you have not tackled a task like this before. If you are not confident about handling wires, you can avail of professional service.