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Why Is My Ceiling Fan Humming & How Do I Stop It?

Why Is My Ceiling Fan Humming & How Do I Stop It?

When using your ceiling fan, the last thing you need is to try and figure out why it is humming. The whole purpose of having a ceiling fan is to relax by cooling the air, not getting disturbed by a humming sound piercing the air. It may even cause you to think that the fan is unstable and bound to fall, which is even more unnerving than the humming sound itself.

Chances are you will obsess over the humming until it stops, or you make it stop. So how do you stop your ceiling fan from humming?

Here are several common reasons why your fan is humming and how to fix them;

Grinding motor parts

The humming sound could result from your motor parts rubbing against each other due to a lack of grease or lubrication. Use elemental oil such as WD-40 to ease the friction and reduce the grinding, which will, in turn, reduce the humming.

Pour a few drops of lubricating oil on the main motor shaft, and make sure you oil the bearings as well. Coat all surfaces that encounter friction thoroughly. Take the fan apart if need be to ensure all necessary arts are fully coated.

Uneven blades

If your blades are not even, they may end up rotating irregularly, causing them to produce a vibrating sound that may sound like humming. Ensure the blades are even and properly fitted to make them rotate in unison to eliminate the humming sound.

Ensure all the blades are angled at a precise and parallel angle and bend any edges that are not angling correctly. You can use a level to make sure they are all in the same position.

Poor mounting

If your ceiling is mounted on a rickety support system, it will wobble every time the blades rotate. Causing the fan to produce a repetitive sound similar to humming. To fix this, simply replace the mounting system and ensure it is bolted securely onto the ceiling.

Ensure all fan mounting system components, including the junction box, are secured onto the ceiling properly. And make sure there are no loose screws. 

Fan settings

Speed settings can cause the fan to buzz, especially if there are speed control mechanisms with differing settings. For instance, setting a fan to slow speed while dimming the light can cause it to malfunction due to differing settings.

Additionally, the fan may be humming if the speed setting is too high, causing it to rattle. Ensure the top part of the fan is fastened correctly to reduce or eliminate any humming.

Faulty bulb

A faulty bulb or a loosely installed bulb may cause your ceiling fan to malfunction. It may also create a banging noise or even make the fan light flicker when the light is on. Ensure your ceiling fan bulbs are correctly installed.

Spoilt spare parts

Broken or malfunctioning fan parts can cause it to hum. To fix this, ensure all the parts of your ceiling fan and bulb are function properly and replace any component that seems like it may be on its last leg.

Other methods you can use to reduce ceiling fan humming;

  • Use rubber insulation spacers between the rising bracket and the ceiling. And in between the blades and the blade brackets.
  • Insert rubber washers between the rising bracket and the motor protuberance to reduce vibrations.
  • Change the rubber flywheel connecting the blade bracket to the motor.

Why is my fan humming but not turning on?

This could be a result of a broken remote. If the fan has a malfunctioning receiver and is not getting a strong signal, it can hum while not turning on. You can rectify this by replacing the receiver or hardwiring it directly into the power lines and using a switch.

Alternatively, you can see if the fan’s capacitors are functioning correctly, as this may cause the fan to hum even when it is off. This could be due to a struggling motor making noises but not working as it should.

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 Ceiling fan humming when off

This could be related to the electric switch. Check to see if the switch is responsible for the hum and change it if it is the cause of the humming sound.


If all the solutions above fail, it may be time to call a professional to look at the fan. If the fan makes a sizzling sound or emits a burning smell alongside the humming, it could lead to a fire. The best thing to do is turn off the fan at the circuit board and call an electrician.