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I bought a home with a ceiling fan that is wired in this manner: the light is on a single switch, and the fan is wired to two switches, on either sides of the room.

It makes more sense to me to have the light on the two switches, and the fan on the single switch. Currently, up at the ceiling fan box the black wires are connected and the blue wire from the for the light is connected to the red wire from the ceiling.

Can I connect the black wire from the fan to the red wire from the ceiling, and the black wire from the ceiling to the blue wire for the light? (This would swap the power wires in order to swap which set of switches control the fan/light.) I don't see why it wouldn't be okay, and this seems easier than trying to figure out how they wired the two switches together (which currently control the fan but I want to control the light) in order to change the wiring at the switches.

Thanks for any help!

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  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. If an answer is helpful, please click the large check mark next to it to accept. And, props for taking our tour before posting; few newbies do. – Daniel Griscom Sep 6 '20 at 10:42
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    One thing to be wary of is if either light or fan is operated by an external "dimmer" or speed control. Such devices may not be happy if roles are swapped. – Hot Licks Sep 6 '20 at 22:09
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Yes, you can do that and it will swap the power to the light and fan. Just remember to turn off the power at the breaker before doing any work.

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That should be fine. The only question is how many neutral (white) wires are connected and if two, are they connected to separate wires to the fan. If there are two and they connect separately, you should swap them too.

As @Jack noted, make sure to turn off the breaker before working; don’t depend on the switches being off.

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    Every fan/light that I have seen has a shared neutral in the fan. Are there fans that have separate neutrals for the fan and the light? – Jim Stewart Sep 6 '20 at 2:07
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    @jimstewart I don’t know. I just wanted to cover all possible situations. – DoxyLover Sep 6 '20 at 2:49
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    @JimStewart It's certainly not common, but it's not impossible either. Especially if the light was originally installed by itself, and the fan added later (or vice versa), the extra wire run for the later addition will have its own neutral. – HiddenWindshield Sep 7 '20 at 1:31

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