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Ceiling Fan Humming - Andydiy - 07-25-2019

I had two Hunter fans go bad on me in the last few months.  One of them would spin very slowly; the other fan will not spin at all but the motor hums.  (It literally stopped spinning in the middle of the night.)

I replaced the capacitor in both.  The fans are nearly identical and use the exact same capacitor.  The one that was spinning slowly is fine now, the one that hums still only hums.  

Hunter fans have a wiring harness that carries all the power for the lights and the fan.  I plugged in a known working, identical, hunter ceiling fan into this harness and it still only hums.  So I know the capacitor is not the problem.

We had a lightning strike a little over a year ago and lost several electronics.  Could that strike have fried the degraded the windings in the motor so it would stop working over a year later?  Any thing else I'm not thinking of that I could do to fix this?


RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - Robert Adams - 07-25-2019

Failing capacitors is the modern scourge of electronics. In everything from motors to circuitry capacitors are a major failure item. The caps in electronics are the #1 mode of failure. Often you will find blown caps or leaking caps or dried out caps on circuit boards and in electronics that are starting to age you will want to replace all the electrolytic capacitors. 
     All these LED lights now and anything that has any type of power supply you will often find the dreaded red chinese capacitor. They are in everything and they are really really cheap. 

         For HVAC and motor caps you can get USA made ones but the price is much much higher and with the quality of many US made products these days I am skeptical if they are really much better. 

    Your lightning strike could have shortened the life of them but who knows. My parents house had the chimney hit before they bough the house. Then over the years the neignbors house was hit then the house caddy corner was hit then the house over and across the street had one of their brick post things by the street hit and blown apart.... Out of all of that not much damage to electronics other than one tv. The loose neutral on the new neighbors house caused way more damage taking out a couple TVs and other electronics. The elec company finally came out and opened the lid on the transformer and found whoever hooked it up didn't even try to tighten the neutral. It took a while but they did finally cut a check for the damage.

        Humming with new cap= dead motor. Our ceiling fans run 24/7 for 9-10 months out of the year(very hot here)and I am amazed they are still working but I do hear bearing noise in one.

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - fixtureman - 07-26-2019

Check to see if you are getting the correct voltage.  check all the connections as they may be loose

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - Snipe Hunter - 07-26-2019

You wouldn't have these fans on dimmer switches, would you?

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - TDKPE - 07-26-2019

By any chance, have you checked the reversing switch?

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - Woodenfish - 07-26-2019

Does that brand have a lifetime motor warranty? Have you contacted the manufacturer for technical assistance?

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - Andydiy - 07-26-2019

We do not have it on a dimmer.

I checked all of the connections but I did not check voltages; I should do that.

I did check the reversing switch and tried in both directions multiple times.

Hunter does have limited life time warranty on the fan motor.  According to their website I would need the receipt.  I bought the fan six years ago, I definitely don't have that.  Good idea though, I bet I would have to send the motor in at my cost too.

Thanks for the ideas.  I think I'll just have to buy a new fan.  At least I was able to save one of the fans.

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - MstrCarpenter - 07-26-2019

My Father in Law would have said, "Do you know why it's humming?....... It doesn't know the words!"

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - TDKPE - 07-27-2019

By any chance, did you give it a spin to see if it will continue running under power? I asked about the reversing switch because absent the “B” winding, which gives it direction, it should turn in either direction equally well, though without that “B” winding, it won’t run as well as it would normally. Sort of like a start winding, but it’s a permanent split capacitor or shaded-pole motor with capacitor in the secondary winding circuit and that smaller winding is always in the circuit. If that small winding is disconnected, like when the direction switch falls apart, it won’t know which way to turn and it will just sit there humming to itself, like a cap-start motor with a bad capacitor.

RE: Ceiling Fan Humming - hbmcc - 07-27-2019

We had ceiling fans years ago; still have one installed in a room we don't use. They just swirled hot air into hotter ceiling air. I changed out to room fans that mostly push air through and out the house via doors and windows. Anywhere that temps vary effectively through the day, new air is always prefered over recirculated. However, one of those swamp coolers--4-foot fan that sucks air out of the house through the attic--would be ideal. Like desert climes, we can vary about 30 degrees in 24 hours; 33 yesterday.

I never complain about cold.