Soon after I replaced my plain vanilla (most regular lever) switch with this old-fashioned looking push button switch to control my ceiling fan, the fan broke.

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Could it be that there is something about this type of switch that makes it only compatible with lights and not more complex controlled units, such as ceiling fans (due to maybe having a capacitor etc)?

  • Do you have any specifications on this switch? Or is it (a) of foreign, uncertified in any practical way, recent manufacture? or (b) an old item cleaned up and reused? Jun 12 at 15:24
  • @manassehkatz-Moving2Codidact -- recently manufactured designed to look retro
    – amphibient
    Jun 12 at 15:31
  • Does it have any specs? Jun 12 at 15:33
  • 2
    If the switch has the proper listings(UL) and was wired correctly, then possible the fan just broke at the same time. Explaining how the fan broke might help. Is there any special features of the switch besides looks, or just push one button for on, the other for off?
    – crip659
    Jun 12 at 16:18
  • 6
    The style of switch may be a red herring. People mess up switch swaps all the time, even when they're only changing from black toggle to beige toggle or replacing a broken one. Jun 12 at 17:58

1 Answer 1


A standard snap switch(on/off) would not be the reason the fan failed.

if it was an electronic switch it could have caused issues but those are rare with ceiling fans because they draw a very small amount of current.

All of the ceiling fans I have worked on are straight AC inductive motors (no brushes) the switches on the fan are usually the first thing to fail followed by the bearings.

  • great answer and, coincidentally, what I was hoping to hear
    – amphibient
    Jun 12 at 19:30

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