A ceiling fan making noise can be from a variety of reasons. Different fan noises can be a CLUE as to what the problem may be. Your ceiling fan may be creating a rattling sound, grinding noise, buzzing noise, rubbing noise, clicking noise, humming noise, or squeaking noise. For example, a rattling sound may mean loose parts. A grinding noise may be from a faulty motor. A buzzing noise can be from an electrical issue. A rubbing noise may be 2 moving parts of the fan are touching. A clicking noise may mean a component of the fan is loose. A humming noise may mean items on the fan need to be resecured. A squeaking noise may mean the fan needs oil. Be sure to always turn the fan OFF before doing any type of maintenance.
Reason 1 = The fan blades are bent upwards and or downwards which causes the fan to be out of balance and therefore wobbles creating a rubbing noise.
Solution 1 = To fix this, check that each fan blade is angled the same, use a level and lay it on top of the fan blades, bend the fans blades so that they all are angled the same.
Reason 2 = The fan motor has lost its lubricating oil and makes a squeaking or grinding noise.
Solution 2 = Drip a few drops of general purpose lubricating oil onto the main shaft above the motor to let the oil drip into the bearings, you may have to remove some parts or completely remove the fan from the ceiling to do this properly.
Reason 3 = The fan clicks or ticks every now and then on any speed.
Solution 3 = A fan blade may be bent upwards which hits the side of the ceiling fan housing. Bend the blade back into place to stop the blade from hitting the housing.
Reason 4 = A component of the fan is loose and causes a clicking, humming, or rubbing sound.
Solution 4 = Check all components of the fan to be sure each screw is tight as a loose screw on any part of the fan can create all types of noises.
Reason 5 = Fan makes a high pitch humming noise when on high speed.
Solution 5 = Check to be sure the top part (canopy) of the fan has not come loose and fallen on the main housing which can create a humming noise.
Reason 6 = The fan constantly makes a clicking or ticking sound per revolution.
Solution 6 = At the very top of the fan, the junction box in the ceiling may not be mounted securely, check to be sure the whole fan is not loose from an unsecure screw and that the box is secure to the ceiling.
Reason 7 = The down rod may not be in place in the mounting bracket, the ball that sits a certain way in the mounting bracket is not sitting in the groove making a clicking or grinding sound.
Solution 7 = Remove the top portion of the fan to get to the mounting bracket to check that the downrod ball is sitting properly in the mounting bracket, be sure the pin that comes with the down rod is attached properly.
Reason 8 = The top portion of the fan is making an electrical buzzing noise.
Solution 8 = Check the ceiling fan motor to be sure it is lubricated with oil and there are no loose parts. Secure all screws on the motor. If the motor is buzzing no matter what you do, remove it and inspect it. If you have done everything to try and fix it, the motor itself may be shot and not worth fixing. A new ceiling fan may be the solution.
Reason 9 = A clicking noise comes from the fan blades and clicks every revolution of the fan.
Solution 9 = The fan blades may have loose screws which hold the fan blades on, use a screwdriver and check to ensure each screw (usually 3 screws per blade) that secures the fan blades to the fan housing are tight and secure.
Reason 10 = The ceiling fan seems to be rattling or vibrating near the light kit.
Solution 10 = Check the light kit to be sure the light socket under the light cover is not bent and letting the bulb vibrate against the bottom of the fan. Be sure the light bulbs are secure. Be sure the glass on or around the light is secured to the base of the light kit.
Other issues that can cause a ceiling fan to make noise.
– Fan blades may not be the exact weight from the factory, find which blade or blades are defective and use a ceiling fan balance kit to restabilize the fan.
– The light kit on the fan is loose and needs to be resecured using a screwdriver.
– Dust in or around the motor or fan blades may cause a wobble or rubbing sound, clean the fan with a duster to remove dust.
– High moisture levels may cause the oil in the motor and bearings to mix with the oil, lubricate above the motor shaft to get oil down into the motor and bearings.
– The light pull switch or fan pull switch chains are hitting the light kit, shorten the switch chains or find out why the fan wobbles and makes rattling sounds.
Do you have a ceiling fan that keeps you up at night or in your living room that makes noise? Cannot find the reason it is noisy? Please leave a comment below to and tell us the problem with your ceiling fan and we will get back with you with the most probable answer and help you to fix that annoying fan.
Allen is the author and creator of this website. He has years of experience with appliance repair, commercial food machinery maintenance, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, vehicle maintenance, and critical aviation related systems.