Would you trust this fan? Do you know how can I tell if it's secure?

I can't see how the canopy is attached to the ceiling. No screws are visible.

I pushed up on the rod, and the ball nestled into place a centimeter higher than it was before. Something seems fishy about that.

I removed the canopy and looked under the hood.

Video clip: https://streamable.com/gyucdv

Note the frayed wire.

Two screws, connecting the socket to something above it, were loose. I tightened them as much as I could. (This took 50+ turns of the screwdriver each. They were very loose.)

The socket and canopy are now flush with the ceiling.

However, the fan still wobbles and rattles.

  • 4
    Cut off your head? Almost guaranteed to be no. Could it fall? Possibly. That looks like the mount style we installed in our house 25 years ago. The canopy either unscrews (by twisting the whole thing) or there are likely screws available though 3 of those 6 holes. See if you can get the canopy off, then post some pics of what's underneath.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jun 21, 2020 at 16:23
  • 2
    It might be attached by screws in a slotted groove. Turn a little counterclockwise and pull down.
    – JACK
    Commented Jun 21, 2020 at 16:44
  • 1
    I just installed a ceiling fan. I am sure that the canopy is not a weight bearing element and is not attached to the ceiling at all. Rather I expect it to be attached to the actual mounting bracket that holds the fan. Can't say if it is safe, of course, but a lose canopy does not seem, by itself, dangerous (also necks are very tough and can certainly not cut by falling ventilators). Commented Jun 21, 2020 at 17:18
  • 2
    How much does it wiggle or rattle when it is working? The more it does, the more likely it will continue to work itself loose.
    – Yehuda_NYC
    Commented Jun 21, 2020 at 20:46
  • 1
    It wiggles and rattles a fair bit. I'm currently trying to rebalance the blades. But I'm concerned that the installation is poor. I haven't been able to remove the canopy - it doesn't straightforwardly unscrew, as far as I can tell. I guess it's stuck. I'm worried that my attempts to unscrew it have made matters worse...
    – Raffi
    Commented Jun 21, 2020 at 20:53

1 Answer 1


Is this ceiling fan going to fall? There is nothing in the photo that tells me a fall is about to happen, but the installation looks poor, and I think you need to get under that cover.

Will it cut your head off? No, if the physical support let’s go, it will dangle by it’s wiring like a wounded buzzard, but probably give you time to get clear. A bonk with a thin piece of wood is the worst you are in for.

Would I trust this fan? No. The installation is poor and I’m concerned the true support (the socket) is also poorly installed. The cover you see does not provide support.

enter image description here

Ceiling fans use a ball and socket system, the ball is what you see in your photo. The socket is under the cover and it is usually screwed into a connection box, and that connection box should be firmly supported. The fan is heavy.

How can you tell if it’s secure? That cover should unscrew and drop down. That will let you see how the socket is supported. .

Ok, sounds like you are not getting a solid hold with the screws. A retrofit (or old work) ceiling fan brace is the way to go. This video shows you the process, don’t have to buy theirs, there are a lot to choose from. You will have to take the fan down and disconnect it from the wiring, but that’s probably a good idea at this point, kind of a mess up there.


  • Nice answer and good job finding a photo! That's the exact method of installation on our first 4 ceiling fans from 25+ years ago. I haven't seen that type of mount on any of the replacements since, though, so I'm not sure if they're still using that method here in the US.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jun 22, 2020 at 15:35
  • Thanks, Anthony! I've removed the cover and added some more photos above.
    – Raffi
    Commented Jun 22, 2020 at 15:59
  • 1
    Made an edit, think you need to rebuild with a fan brace, video above Commented Jun 23, 2020 at 0:24

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