We have a ceiling fan light. One swith controls the fan, the other the light. When I turn on the light switch, there is a noticable delay (like a full second) before the light comes on. Is it a wiring issue? I notice no blinking, no other problems, just the delay.

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    is it a low energy bulb (or normal fluorescent light)? some have a delay on start up – ratchet freak Feb 4 '12 at 19:50
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    No, regular small fan light bulbs (incandescent) – LLA Feb 5 '12 at 0:34
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    Is it possibly not a standard hardwired switch? Some fans are controlled by radio remotes, and the receiving electronics could have a delay. If the switches are identical to your other typical light switches, this probably isn't it. – Shimon Rura Feb 5 '12 at 0:59
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    Sounds like you have lazy electrons. Or possibly a bad switch. – Tester101 Feb 5 '12 at 3:56
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    Of course, the lazy electrons is possible...it is in a teenager's room after all.... – LLA Feb 5 '12 at 5:32

This is one of those problems that you just have to work out systematically, don't be swayed by logic.

  • If there is only one bulb change it.
  • Check the wiring at the light and switch - see that the connections are tight.
  • Change the switch.
  • Try wiring a test lamp to the fixture.
  • Call an electrician. You may have serious wiring issues.

Also don't rule out the fan. I've installed one fan that had a rather large capacitor on the light circuit. Not sure of the reason of the capacitor but that light had a small delay when turned on.


I had this problem with an dimmer switch designed for use with LED and CF bulbs. I was using incandescent bulbs. I returned the dimmer switch to home depot and got a regular "for incandescent only" dimmer switch and the problem went away.


I had the same issue with a combination switch with a Hunter fan. My delay for the light to come on was several minutes and then sometimes the light would flash like a strobe light. After reading comments from this site I decided to purchase another Hunter fan and see what happens. I connected the fan and light. It now comes on instantly without any delay. I have another fan/light combo in another room. The delay is only a couple of seconds but no other problem. My suggestion is to purchase a new light/fan if you are having the same problems that I was. Not sure if it is safe to keep using it like mine was operating. Apparently there was some regulation about delays that I have read in some other sites.


It could be a defective light bulb. It is very odd.

protected by Community May 14 '18 at 20:46

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