I am installing ceiling fans in a brand new home that had pre wiring for ceiling fans installed. The issue I am running into is I have two switches in my wall, one controls an outlet and one is a dimmer switch that controls the ceiling fan. The conduit for the ceiling fan has a wire coming out with black, red, white and ground. When I connect wires from the fan I connect the black to black for the fan, red to blue for light, white to white for neutral and grounds. The problem is the black wire is not powering the fan. The light works with the switch but will not power the fan. If I connect the black from the fan, blue from the fan to the red in ceiling I get power to both light and fan with the switch. My concern is that the dimmer now controls the lights and the fan which can burn up the fan motor. I don’t understand why the fan does not have power when connected to the black wire from the ceiling.

  • you forgot to ask a question – jsotola May 27 '19 at 22:18
  • My question is why the fan doesn’t have power when connected to the black wire from the ceiling. I have to have the black and blue from the fan connected to the red from the ceiling for them to both have power. Shouldn’t I be able to wire blue to red and black to black and still have power to both lights and fan separately? – Amy Beymer May 27 '19 at 22:54
  • Does the black wire have 120 V ac on it? Which wire in the ceiling is coming from the dimmer switch? – Jim Stewart May 27 '19 at 22:56
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    Can you post photos of the insides of both boxes involved? – ThreePhaseEel May 27 '19 at 22:59
  • The red wire from the ceiling is the wire that the dimmer switch controls. I’m not sure how to add pictures to the post? – Amy Beymer May 27 '19 at 23:27

You need two separate switches in the wall, one for the fan and one for the light. The dimmer switch may be one which is rated for a light or a fan, you would have to determine that.

You could disconnect and remove the simple switch which controls the receptacle and connect the two wires so the receptacle is always on. Then use that spot for a dimmer switch that is rated to control a fan. On one side of that switch would be the hot feed and the output side would be the black wire going to the fan.

Alternatively, if you don't need a dimmer for the light you could use the simple switch for the light and the dimmer switch for the fan (assuming it is rated for a fan).


Another alternative is to leave the receptacle switch in place and connected as is and change the dimmer switch to a double dimmer switch that will control both the light and the fan. double dimmer switch

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  • I guess I was figuring that the 2nd switch was wired to control the fan and the outlet and the dimmer would control the light. It just seems silly to me to have an outlet switch and a fan with dimmer switch in one room. – Amy Beymer May 27 '19 at 23:29
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    The switched outlet would be there for the ability to use a floor lamp or something similar, and being able to control it with a light switch that is easier to access than the switch on the light itself. – Jeff Cates Jun 1 '19 at 0:48

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