We just installed our new ceiling fan with lights. The fan works fine but the light will flick on and then off again immediately. We took it back down and reinstalled it, ensuring that all wires were connected properly, but still the issue has not been resolved.

How do we fix this?

  • 1
    Did the ceiling fan come with bulbs or did you supply your own? If you supplied your own, did you stay within the recommended maximum wattage? New ceiling fans in the US need to include a wattage limiting circuit on their lighting, this could be shutting off power on you.
    – mac
    Mar 25, 2013 at 17:08
  • Related: diy.stackexchange.com/questions/15426/…
    – Niall C.
    Mar 25, 2013 at 17:16

2 Answers 2


I had the same problem. It is the wattage limiting black box that is bad if you used the bulbs that came with it and it doesn't work. I am an electrician so I found it to be a simple fix.

Turn off power at the switch. Open the bottom of the fan where you plugged the light in. You are basically going to bypass the little black box that goes into the lights. Mine had a red, blue and white wire going to the black box. Cut or unsplice the 3 wires as close as you can to the black box and remove the black box. Splice the white wire going to the light to the white wire that came from the selector fan switch back together. Then splice the red wire from the plug-in connector to the black wire going to the lights. This will solve your problem.

You can also get a new black box if you want the wattage limiting feature still. I am an electrician of 15 years and I don't see the point of it as my fan only takes small bulbs anyways. If you do remove this black box do not put in bulbs that will add up to over 190 watts together.

Good luck

  • My wiring was a tad different. I snipped off the red, white and blue wires that went into this "wattage limiter", and spliced the red and blue wires together. The 3rd wheel, the white wire, I did not connect to anything. It worked like a charm.
    – user18432
    Dec 4, 2013 at 3:13

I had the same issue with a new fan that had all CFLs installed. I changed one CFL to an regular old fashioned bulb and the flickered stopped.

I do have other fans with no issues and all CFLs.

  • A "dimmable" CFL/LED light may achieve the same result.
    – Zhentar
    Jul 11, 2014 at 19:14

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